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Micah 6: 6-8 “6 With what shall I come before the Lord and bow down before the exalted God? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, wi...

Monday, March 25, 2024

The Answer

Matthew 21:23-27

23 Jesus entered the temple courts, and, while he was teaching, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to him. “By what authority are you doing these things?” they asked. “And who gave you this authority?” 24 Jesus replied, “I will also ask you one question. If you answer me, I will tell you by what authority I am doing these things. 25 John’s baptism—where did it come from? Was it from heaven, or of human origin?” They discussed it among themselves and said, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will ask, ‘Then why didn’t you believe him?’ 26 But if we say, ‘Of human origin’—we are afraid of the people, for they all hold that John was a prophet.” 27 So they answered Jesus, “We don’t know.” Then he said, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I am doing these things.”

When we think of the things that Jesus did upon entering Jerusalem, particularly the cleansing of the temple, it was only natural that the authorities would ask Him on whose authority He was acting.

Jesus, as he often did, countered with a question of his own.  “On whose authority did John the Baptist act?”  Their answer was an answer they thought would not condemn them either in Jesus’ eyes or in the eyes of the people.  They said they did not know.  But an answer of ignorance from people who should have known was self-condemning.  They could not face the truth.

The religious authorities had a duty to know these things, to know a true prophet from a false prophet. To say they did not know was to say they were not who they claimed to be.  So Jesus, rightly, refused to answer their question.

As Christians, we are to walk the path of truth, wherever that path leads, however difficult the journey, no matter how uncomfortable.  

And at the end of that journey lies the answer.


May the love of Christ be with you,

Rev. Eric Lanier (Retired)


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