Advent Day 16: Who Do You Say I Am?

Advent Day 16 Reading: Matthew 21:23-27

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?” 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. John’s baptism-where did it come from? Was it from heaven, or from men?” They discussed it among themselves and said, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ He will ask, ‘Then why didn’t you believe him?’ But if we say, ‘From men’-we are afraid of the people, for they all hold that John was a prophet.” 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 the leaders of the day were questioning Jesus’ authority, He opted NOT to answer their question, while instead, at a later time in Matthew 28: 18, after He had risen from the dead, Jesus revealed His presence and authority openly to the new leaders of the day (his disciples) by telling them, Yes, that all authority in heaven and on earth had been given to Him. 

As we all know Jesus is the Son of God, and as an equal member of the Triune Godhead has authority over heaven and earth.  Why then did He choose to refrain from saying so at the time the chief leaders asked Him, but later initiated telling his disciples without be asked?  I believe that His motive, was motivated by not only His timely purpose, but His audience. Earlier, He knew the chief priests motives of inquiry were impure, so He wisely chose not to reveal Himself.  At a later time, when He knew the true leaders could be trusted with the truth of His identity and power, He openly revealed His authority to them.  

Today, I believe it is much the same.  When someone comes to God in sincerity and humility, Christ gladly reveals His identity, power and authority. According to our faith, it will be done for us. The Godhead, being the gentlemen they are, will not give us more than we can handle (in faith) at the time. They do not want to stumble us by revealing a component of Their nature to us  that might become misconstrued by our impure motives, but instead, wisely choose to reveal to us according to our readiness.

That is one of the reasons I believe it is by faith we are saved. Without faith, we will NOT see the kingdom of God, nor be able to have an inward witness that He IS, who He says He is.  I remember when I was struggling to believe (as these chief priests were) and  God sent a born-again believer to me who said, If you make the choice to believe in faith what your mind cannot comprehend, you will be saved; and once saved, your born-again spirit will reveal the truth to you about who Jesus is.  I knew I had a choice to make, and thank God I made the right choice. With sincerity and in humility, I put my faith in what I could not understand, and voila, Christ revealed Himself and His authority to me. I can honestly say that my life had never been the same.

Who Do You Say He Is?  Do you doubt His authority in your life today to do the impossible, or to take care of your needs or loved ones? Whatever those doubts might be, I challenge you to do an about-face with sincerity and in humility, and come before Him as Peter did and confess, You ARE  the Christ, the Son of the living God. When you do, there is no doubt that your life will never be the same.

-The Quilted Poetess

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