Authority was a key theme within today’s reading. A centurion—a Roman—an unlikely source confesses the authority of Jesus; a confession Jesus praises, “Truly I say to you, I have not found such great faith with anyone in Israel.” (8:10).
Then the disciples who should confess Jesus’ authority are surprised His authority is not limited, “What kind of a man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey Him?” (8:27).
The demons understand Jesus’ authority, “Have You come here to torment us before the time?” (8:29b) They recognize His authority as Judge.
Then the scribes deny Jesus’ authority, “And some of the scribes said to themselves, “This fellow blasphemes.” (9:3)
Jesus then illustrates His authority to forgive sins (9:6).
A woman bleeding understands Jesus’ authority, “If I only touch His garment I will get well.” (9:21)
Jesus then with His authority gives authority to His followers (10:1)
But Jesus reminds them that their authority is through the power of God not themselves (10:19, 20).
And those who receive the authority of Jesus’ followers receive Jesus’ authority (10:40).
Chapters 8 & 9: Jesus’ authority demonstrated. Chapter 10: how that authority is to play out in the lives of Jesus’ followers.
- Sent out to witness by healing, raising the dead, cast out demons, etc.
- Sent out to witness by the way they testify to Jesus in the face of persecution.
- Sent out to witness by proclaiming publicly & boldly what they have learned privately.
It seems to me that the evidence of us possessing the authority of Jesus is found in just that…
We are witnesses!
Tomorrow’s Reading: Romans 9 & 10