On Tuesday of Holy Week, Jesus' authority is questioned. Basically everyone important wigs out and tries to test Jesus by asking him where he gets his authority. (Matthew 21:23-27, Mark 11:27-33, Luke 20:1-8)*
His response of course is... "yes. ha!"
OR his response could also be "I'd tell ya but you wouldn't believe me."
I'm reminded this day that we often look at what God is doing in the world and ask Jesus, "Who do you think you are!?" Or more often than not, we feel we should see God somewhere and ask, "Why aren't you fulfilling my desires for a savior!?"
This is a perfect opportunity for Jesus to say, "I'm God! I'm of divine origin!" and yet he doesn't do that. Why? Well, he is side stepping their question because he is not concerned about authority. And what does that question get you, other than division? It isn't concerned about people's lives changing. It isn't concerned about helping people find God.
It is a label. A misunderstood label meant to trap and kill a man. Take note, all you Christians willing to run around claiming to have divine authority. Here is one place where Jesus wouldn't even fall for that trap.
Remember, it is just Tuesday. Yesterday he "cleaned out" the temple and today people want to know why. In our lives may we be willing to validate Jesus' authority in our lives. May we enable him to use us, move through us, and ultimately when people ask where we get our authority to love the unlovable, let's blame Jesus.
Remember, Jesus will be asked about authority again before this week is over. Next time by the Sanhedrin and Pilate.
* - as an aside, the Gospels sometimes have a tendency to remember certain things differently. Those three Scriptures, however, are almost identical in the NIV. This kind of parallel writing just hardly happens. It shows just how important Jesus' response is and how well it was remembered by the Christian community. Obviously, early Christians didn't want to taint this experience by putting words in Jesus' mouth. It is yet another Scripture that shows how much Jesus disliked giving straight answers - despite our best efforts to make him do so.