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The Remarkable life of Christ: The Authority of Jesus – Mark 1:21-2:12

Feb 27, 2022
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The Authority of Jesus: Mark 1:21-2:12

Capernaum was the adult home and ministry hub of Jesus. This city was located on the Sea of Galilee and was considered the “Harvard of the day” when it came to knowledge about the Scripture. The synagogue there was in the heart of town, and was used as a place of instruction, as the center of Jewish culture and literature, and was like the modern-day courthouse. This synagogue was where Jesus “entered the synagogue and was teaching”. the people hearing “were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one who had authority, and not as the scribes.
In verses 23-27, we see a man enter the synagogue who had an unclean spirit. “But Jesus rebuked him saying, “Be silent, and come out of him!” “And they were all amazed so that they questioned among themselves saying, ‘What is this?’ A new teaching with authority!”
Mark goes on to show how Jesus healed Peter’s mother, many others who were sick. We then see Jesus heal the lame man who was dropped down through the roof. In Chapter 2:8 it says, “And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven.” When Jesus was questioned by the scribes, he said in verse 10, “But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.
Jesus’ teachings and miracles blew them away and put the fear of God in them. Jesus didn’t come to be a sideshow, but instead came to be the Son of God! He came to preach the gospel that one can be forgiven and set free. The authority that Jesus possesses is astonishing. We need to have our eyes open and allow it to affect everything we do.
This authority that Jesus had was called s’mikhah, and it was given to Him at His baptism. This authority means “laying” on of hands in the ordination ceremony for a judge, elder, or rabbi. It is a symbolic act that confers or transfers an office, along with its duties and privileges, by dramatizing God’s blessing and gifting needed for the work. Uniquely, only rabbis with s’mikhah had the authority (reshut) to interpret Scripture in order to teach. All other rabbis had to quote another rabbi or teacher who had authority. Also, only rabbis with authority could have disciples. We see multiple times in Scripture where Jesus speaks to His authority:
Matthew 7:28-29 “And when Jesus finished these saying, the crowds were astonished at his teaching, for he was teaching them as one who had authority, and not as their scribes.
Matthew 21:28 “And when he entered the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came up to him as he was teaching and said, By what authority are you doing these things, and who gave you this authority?”
Matthew 28:18-20 “ALL AUTHORITY in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always to the end of the age.”
You have been given this great commission to make disciples wherever you are in life!
Questions to Consider:
  1. Whose authority are you under at home? at work? at school? How does that authority impact you?
  2. What amazed you this week? Why were you amazed?
  3. When you read the Bible, are you amazed at who Jesus is and what He has done? how does that impact you?
  4. Pray for the opportunity to have gospel conversations so that others can be amazed at the love and Truth of Jesus!
  5. Pray that the gospel pushes forward through the war in Ukraine. Pray for the protection of pastors that are boldly exclaiming the gospel to a people that may be more able to hear it now in a time of desperation.