Silence and Stillness before God (2 minutes)
When Jesus returned to the Temple and began teaching, the leading priests and elders came up to him. They demanded, “By what authority are you doing all these things? Who gave you the right?” “I’ll tell you by what authority I do these things if you answer one question,” Jesus replied. “Did John’s authority to baptize come from heaven, or was it merely human?”They talked it over among themselves. “If we say it was from heaven, he will ask us why we didn’t believe John. But if we say it was merely human, we’ll be mobbed because the people believe John was a prophet.” So they finally replied, “We don’t know.”And Jesus responded, “Then I won’t tell you by what authority I do these things.
Holy is feisty. This describes Jesus’ retort to the chief priests and elders when they questioned His credentials. They challenged Jesus to identify the source of His authority.
Jesus responded to their question with one of His own. “I will also ask you one question. If you answer me, I will tell you by what authority I am doing these things” (Matthew 21:24).
The chief priests and elders processed Jesus’ question like a game of chess, calculating the outcomes of potential moves. The leaders valued positioning more than truth.
Question to Consider
Lent is a time to ask ourselves if we, like the leaders in Matthew 21, value anything more than truth. Is Jesus awaiting honesty from us? Is there any question Jesus could ask that we would rather not answer?
Jesus, help me to be honest in all areas of my life. Help me to not shy away from your questions but to trust you in the process of making me holy.
Conclude with Silence (2 minutes)
The 40 days of decrease blogs have been inspired by the book “40 Days of Decrease” by Alicia Britt Chole.