The words of Paul to the Corinthians reveal so much about the response to the gospel when the lost hear it. “For you see your calling, brethren, that not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called” (1 Cor. 2:26). Why is this true? All of mankind is invited to come to Jesus, but so many of the mighty and noble do not answer the invitation. Much can be learned by looking at those who were mighty or noble who did respond.
There were those whom the Bible describes as noble who did respond. John chapter four describes a nobleman who lived in Capernaum and traveled more than twenty miles to see Jesus in Cana. His child was dying, and he begged Jesus to come and heal his son. Jesus told him to return home for his son would be healed. “So the man believed the word that Jesus spoke to him, and he went on his way” (John 4:50). Read it carefully. Unlike most who are noble and do not respond, this man responded because he believed the word of Jesus. Every noble man who believes and obeys the teaching of Jesus will be saved. Those who do not will be lost—not because they are noble but because they fail to listen to Jesus.
What about the mighty? The mighty are those whose position in life has placed them above others. An example of this would be centurions, the Roman officers who commanded a hundred soldiers. Why is it that some centurions responded and realized who Jesus was?
Matthew chapter eight and Luke chapter seven describe a centurion who lived in Capernaum. He had used his own money to build a synagogue for the Jews. He sent the elders among the Jews to ask Jesus to heal his sick servant. As Jesus approached his house, the centurion gave this message to Jesus. “Lord, do not trouble Yourself, for I am not worthy that You should enter under my roof.” He was a mighty man but realized the Mighty One. He said, “I did not think myself worthy to come to You. But say the word, and my servant will be healed.”
How did Jesus describe this mighty man? The Lord turned to that crowd who was following Him and said, “I say to you, I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel” (Luke 7:9). Why did this man, this powerful soldier, find such favor from the Lord? His great faith was verbalized when he said that all that was needed was for Jesus to simply say the word. Mighty men whose hearts respond to the words of Jesus will be among those who are called and become the chosen (Matt. 22:14).
The gospel is for all mankind, but only those who are humble enough to listen to the words of Jesus will become the chosen people of God.