Sunday, December 15, 2019

Who gave you this authority?

“By what authority are you doing these things? And who gave you this authority?” (Matthew 21: 23).

Monday of the 3rd week of Advent. A confrontation between the chief priests and elders with Jesus over Authority. Consider the following facts:

The kingdom that Jesus came to set up has some commonalities with earthly kingdoms. For example :
1. King
2. A realm/domain
3. A government
4. Laws
5. Citizens

When Jesus threw out the money changers from the Temple, the recognized authorities of the Temple questioned His authority.
"Where was John’s baptism from? Was it of heavenly or of human origin?” By this question, Jesus points to the chief priests and elders the existence of a different type of authority.

In the trial of the Apostles Peter and John before the Sanhedrin, we see the Teacher Gamaliel allude to a different authority:
"So now I tell you, have nothing to do with these men, and let them go. For if this endeavor or this activity is of human origin, it will destroy itself.  But if it comes from God, you will not be able to destroy them; you may even find yourselves fighting against God.” They were persuaded by him." (Acts 5: 38 - 39).

The truth is that the Kingdom of God is already here and now. The Church is the seed of that Kingdom.
Where does the Pope get his authority? Not from the barrels of the gun as some dictators believe. Stalin quipped:  "How many military divisions does the Pope have?" Jesus answered that question to Pontius Pilate:
"My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jewish leaders. But now my kingdom is from another place."

The question for us is:
Does King Jesus reign over your heart and mind and finances? If not, Advent is the Season of grace to place your life under the authority of Jesus Christ.

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