Thursday, October 27, 2016

Astonished By Authority

When was the last time you were astonished by the teachings of Christ?

In three of the Gospels, the people were "astonished" with the authority by which Jesus taught. (Matthew 7:28-29, Mark1:22 & 27, Luke 4:32) Here was an uneducated carpenter speaking with more than knowledge and understanding. He spoke with authority, even more so than their scribes. They couldn't wrap their minds around it.

In just 5 chapters of the book of Matthew (8-12), Jesus exerts His authority over disease, sickness, demons, storms, waves, death, blindness, deafness, and religion. The people rallied around all these demonstrations of His authority and thought nothing of his lowly roots when they were watching and wanting Him to do more miracles.

 Yet the people weren't described as "astonished" by these miracles. They were astonished by the authority of His teaching.

The pharisees even asked Him for more signs, but Jesus wouldn't "perform" for them. He had already shown and would continue to show His power and His authority without playing into their hands.

Jesus knew that they REALLY couldn't understand the authority by which He spoke. They thought they were the ones who were supposed to have the authority.

Honestly, growing up in the church, I seldom respond in astonishment to His teaching OR His miracles.  Don't get me wrong, I am thankful that by God's good grace that I grew up hearing about and knowing these things.

Yet, maybe we should ask God to let us see His teaching with fresh eyes....

This week, I have been focused on God's authority. I want, no I NEED, to be astonished by this the same way the people in the Gospels were astonished.

My prayer for myself, and for you sweet reader, is that we would all be astonished by His authority, especially in His teaching....

If we are astonished by the authority of His teaching, how would our lives be different? How would our faith journey be stronger? How would we approach the relationships and circumstances of our daily lives?

We don't need to go to conference to be astonished. We don't need to purchase LifeWay's latest packaged Bible Study. We don't need to take a Facebook poll or even make a Google search.

Just ask.

Just ask Him to astonish you by the authority of His teaching.

He will answer. This is the kind of prayer He delights in answering. We are humbling ourselves and looking for His glory.

Look for it.

Be astonished by His authority.

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