As One Who Had Authority
Matthew 7:28-29 “(28) And when Jesus finished these sayings, the crowds were astonished at his teaching, (29) for he was teaching them as one who had authority, and not as their scribes.”
Mark 1:21-22 “(21) And they went into Capernaum, and immediately on the Sabbath he entered the synagogue and was teaching. (22) And they were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one who had authority, and not as the scribes.”
Luke 4:31-32 “(31) And he went down to Capernaum, a city of Galilee. And he was teaching them on the Sabbath, (32) and they were astonished at his teaching, for his word possessed authority.”
Authority has to do with power and right. Power granted to enable one act and speak. Right to act and speak. The power and right can be granted politically, by arms, by studies, by relation and by divine appointment. Authority has also to do with being a reliable source of information. Authority is also power to influence because of perceived and appreciated authority. Authority also refers to academic knowledge of a certain discipline. Authority has to do with legitimacy to act and speak. Jesus spoke as one who had authority.
Authority in speaking refers to reliability of the teacher. Authority in speaking refers to mastery of the lesson content. Authority in speaking refers to effectiveness that causes listeners to understand like never before. Authority has to do with delivering the lesson in a manner that empowers listeners to act on it. Without authority, the teacher and the lesson, remains wanting! Jesus taught them as one who had authority.
Scribes had qualifications and appointment and thus had authority. Scribes had authority but in the presence of true authority they had no authority. They were schooled which is legitimate authority, but they lacked the ultimate effective authority. They had been appointed scribes and earned a rightful living as such, thus they had authority, but really had none. They even had the titles that confirm authority, they were scribes, but their authority ran into a crisis when Christ the ultimate authority showed up. There is authority and there is authority. When listeners did the natural thing of comparing their teachers, they dismissed the scribes, and said of Jesus, that He taught as one who had authority.
Human acquired authority is nothing in the light of the cross of Jesus. Human acquired authority is highly limited and ineffective in comparison to what God can do. While we pursue and posses human acquired authority, we also recognise that the best authority and most effective, is that which Jesus has. Jesus taught as one who had authority.
The Matthew chapter seven account is a testimony of those who heard Jesus deliver the sermon on the Mount. When that very long sermon ended, the people were left perturbed, they were astonished at the lesson and the Teacher. The crowds who were listening immediately dismissed the competence of their scribes. They now understood the Torah. The entire Torah had not only been summarised but simplified. The expectations of God now made sense and were very clear. They knew Jesus had no formal schooling to give Him the title and role of Teacher, yet He taught as one who had authority.
The Mark and Luke accounts refer to the same incidence of Jesus teaching in a Synagogue on Sabbath. These accounts are different from the Matthew account which is set on a Hillside after the sermon on the Mount. Jesus was not the only one teaching on sabbath, yet His teaching has been remembered two thousand years later. Jesus was not the only one who was listened to by the congregation, yet His teaching method remains memorable to this day. Jesus was different because His word passed authority.
While other writers indicate that He taught as one who had authority, Luke writes differently. Luke writes that, His word possessed authority. His lesson was clear and moving. His lesson was applicable. His lesson was desirable. His lesson was unforgettable. His lesson was potent in every sense. His lessons brought a sense of relief, after religion which had been adhered to without understanding, could now be appreciated by all. His word possessed authority.
Luke 10:19 “Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you.” I wish to declare to you today that He still gives authority to those who believe in Him. He gives competence and abilities that make us immediately stand out from other teachers. His authority helps us overcome demonic power, which includes inability to learn and particularly to learn God’s word. To those who believe in Him, authority is freely available. Authority to live happy lives and authority to be the best in our professions and finally be saved to heaven. Behold, I have given you authority, so that you too can speak, as one who had authority. Authority from Jesus, not our own that has been given by human beings or earned in human efforts. Authority emanating from the ultimate universal authority.
Behold, I (Jesus) have given you authority over any challenge in teaching and entire christian life. Behold, I (Jesus) have given you authority…and nothing shall harm you as you minister to me in teaching and in your entire life. We need this authority in our lives. Behold, I (Jesus) have given you authority…. Do you accept it? I accept it and take it and apply it, in Jesus name. Amen! (C)firstname.lastname@example.org (do not delete any part of this post, including this. You are free to share these posts but don’t edit the authorship or content… thank you and be blessed!)