Jesus wasn’t a super popular guy to most Romans while He was alive. In fact, most of the authority in the time when Jesus was alive wanted Him dead (which is why it eventually happened wink wink).
On the Tuesday of Holy Week, Jesus is teaching in the temple to a crowd of people. While this is happening the leading priests, the teachers of religious law, and the elders came up to him… that seems to be a bunch of authority right there. Here’s what they said:
“By what authority are you doing all these things? Who gave you the right?”
Yes, they seem a little upset and majorly confrontational but what does Jesus do? He responds with a question:
“Let me ask you a question first,” he replied. “Did John’s authority to baptize come from heaven, or was it merely human?”
That clearly flusters all of these authority figures who have come only to try and humiliate Jesus in front of His following. It continues:
They talked it over among themselves. “If we say it was from heaven, he will ask why we didn’t believe John. But if we say it was merely human, the people will stone us because they are convinced John was a prophet.” So they finally replied that they didn’t know.
They now have realized that they backed themselves into a corner. This is the moment where they are kicking themselves for trying to outsmart the Son of God.
And Jesus responded, “Then I won’t tell you by what authority I do these things.” Luke 20:1-8
So you see here a classic example of what Jesus faced much of His life: opposition. Jesus taught love and the priests taught rules. Jesus taught for us to be merciful and the priests taught order and discipline… do you see where this could potentially clash?
But Jesus wanted and needed for everyone to hear the good news, He wanted them to know the Gospel.
I think this story reaffirms what we covered yesterday for Holy Week. Throughout His time ministering to people, Jesus simply spoke the truth and did it boldly, no matter the situation or circumstance He was presented with.
Yesterday: boldness. Today: faith.
We must be bold, but we also shouldn’t back down when the world says it’s not convenient or that it’s weird or that it’s a bad time or that you are odd for talking about it… That’s the devil trying to keep The Good News from spreading.
Jesus provides the only way to salvation, He gives us eternal life. He knew that then when He taught and was constantly bombarded by opposition, but look what He achieved.
One person changed the world, despite opposition, despite being sometimes unpopular to some people.
Jesus wants us to have that boldness, to know that He will provide for us if we simply trust in Him.
We can have absolute faith that in all things, in every place, with any person, for whatever reason God is on our side. If He is for us, who could be against us?
Take heart in that, but also know that your faith will be tested. There will be people who try to talk down your faith, try to argue away the things that Jesus did or taught. You’re best response is simple– love them.
Show them Christ’s character and watch His love wrap around them in a way that they have maybe never felt.
I think I’m beginning to ramble, but it really gets me so excited to talk about God and how much He loves us. What a gift!!
Dear Lord, give us assurance that we can lean on You for every situation we find ourselves in.
Give us a peace that transcends the oppositions this world tries to throw us off with. Give us faith to stand strong under You no matter the situation or no matter if we “fail” because Your love is perfect and goes so far beyond our mistakes. Wash us white as snow, grant us peace, but make our lives uncomfortable if it means turning more towards You. We love you Lord, Amen.