It’s the final day of Stuart’s notes for a while. If you have been reading them, I’m sure like me, you would like to thank Stuart for taking the time to produce them. The Bible is not a soothing bedtime read, it’s described within it’s pages as a sword;
“For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12)
I’ve been reading the Bible for many years and there are still times when I find it difficult because it’s so challenging. Some of the issues Stuart has touched on this week have been very challenging but if we are dealing with God’s word, that’s exactly what we should expect.
Today’s passage can be read here.
Here’s an unholy alliance coming to challenge the Lord Jesus; the three most powerful groups in Jewish society; the religious nobility, the teachers of the law and tribal elders.
They believed they had the authority over the people, but the people preferred Jesus. They hadn’t commission him or inferred their authority to his teaching and actions, more than that they saw his most recent actions (clearing the temple, the triumphal entry) as direct criticism and challenge.
So they challenged him; by what authority are you doing this (v2). No answer given (v8).
Compare this to another occasion when Mary and Martha challenged the Lord Jesus after Lazarus’ death (John 11). Lord if you had been here he wouldn’t have died. But on that occasion he answered. So why did he answer Mary and Martha, but not the Jewish leaders?
Honesty. Mary and Martha were honest about themselves; this is what we know, this is what we feel, please respond.
However, there was no honesty from the group in today’s passage (v5-7). The Lord Jesus knew the answer before he asked the question. But he did not ask for his enlightenment, rather it was for theirs. He gave them the opportunity to be honest with themselves and if they had he would have given them answers – the right answers.
Look at the incredible things that happened, the answers Jesus gave when people were honest with him: Luke 7: 37-38, 48-50, Luke 7: 6-10, Luke 5: 8-10
It’s the same today, the Lord Jesus knows me inside out and I need to be honest to him about myself before I hear the answers and see the actions he is doing in my life.
Lord you know me inside out. Help me to be honest about myself with you so that I can hear what you have to say to me.