So when the centurion and those with him, who were guarding Jesus, saw the earthquake and the things that had happened, they feared greatly, saying, "Truly this was the Son of God!" – Matthew 27.54
I like this different perspective we get here. We get to see all the events of the crucifixion from the perspective of a Roman solider.
Imagine we are there. There has been all the drama of a crucifixion. The sky has turned dark in the middle of the day. There has been an earthquake. He has heard the cries of Jesus including ‘Father, forgive them for they don’t know what they are doing.’
When all that happened and Jesus said ‘it is finished’ a Roman soldier overseeing the crucifixion called out ‘truly this was the Son of God.’
I don’t know what really happened in this soldier’s heart, but he saw what many today fail to see – Jesus of Nazareth was not just a teacher. He was not just a social reformer. He was and is truly the Son of God.
The soldier had a message that the world still needs to hear today. There is no hope in apart from the living Son of God and He is still alive today.