So Great Faith

Jesus and the Centurion,” by Paolo Veronese

Jesus taught His disciples about faith by pointing out manifestations of faith in others. When a Roman centurion begged Him to heal his servant, Jesus agreed to do so. But when the centurion said, “Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed” (Matthew 8:8; see also Luke 7:7), Jesus was impressed. The centurion understood that a person with authority need not be physically present to complete a task. Because of his authority, his words had power, and he believed that Jesus’ words also had power which transcended His physical location.

Jesus said to the people around Him, “I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel” (Matthew 8:10, Luke 7:9). The Jews had so many advantages with respect to faith. They had the words of prophets and the examples of their ancestors to guide them. This man, who lacked all of those things, had nevertheless demonstrated extraordinary confidence in the Savior’s power to heal, and his faith was rewarded.

Many years earlier, a missionary named Ammon saw a great manifestation of faith from an unlikely source. As her husband lay in a coma, the queen of the Lamanites asked Ammon to heal him. Ammon assured her that the king was well and that he would awaken the following day. “Believest thou this?” he asked. “I have had no witness save thy word, and the word of our servants,” she replied; “nevertheless I believe that it shall be according as thou hast said” (Alma 19:9).

Ammon exclaimed, “Blessed art thou because of thy exceeding faith; I say unto thee, woman, there has not been such great faith among all the people of the Nephites” (Alma 10:10).

On the second day of the Savior’s visit to the American continent following His death and resurrection, He shared a marvelous spiritual experience with a group of people. As they prayed together, the people were purified and filled with His glory. He testified to them:

So great faith have I never seen among all the Jews; wherefore I could not show unto them so great miracles, because of their unbelief.

Verily I say unto you, there are none of them that have seen so great things as ye have seen; neither have they heard so great things as ye have heard.

3 Nephi 19:35-36

Today, I will identify and acknowledge expressions of faith. I will be particularly grateful when people demonstrate unusual levels of faith, as did the centurion and the Lamanite queen. I will recognize that people from a variety of backgrounds can demonstrate extraordinary faith, and I will strive to learn from them.

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