Embracing Authority (Matthew 21)

au·thor·i·ty    [uhthawr-i-tee, uhthor-]noun, plural au·thor·i·ties.


the power to determine, adjudicate, or otherwise settle issues or disputes; jurisdiction; the right to control, command, or determine. Source: dictionary.com

or said another way:

authority |əˈθôritē; ôˈθär-| (abbr.: auth.)

noun ( pl. -ties)

the power or right to give orders, make decisions, and enforce obedience. Source: Apple’s Dictionary

Rather we are apt to admit or recognize it we all have things that have authority in our lives.  People and things we have to answer and submit to. Sometimes authority happens without any say in the matter.  For instance i don’t get to pick who the chief of police is here in town or the mayor or the fire chief, but just because i didn’t get to pick them doesn’t mean that i don’t have to answer to them.  Then there are situations where i have a bit of say in the matter, i pick where i work and if i don’t like it i can try to find work elsewhere, but i don’t get to hire my boss.  Then there are situations where i choose to actively submit and let certain powers have authority in my life, choosing God.  i love how in Matthew 21 you can clearly see who and what the disciples let have authority in their lives, who and what Jesus lets have authority in his life, and also you can look at the chief priests and elders of the people and see who and what has the authority in their lives.  To equate it to my life, i can either submit and embrace the authority of God in my life or i submit and embrace authority that really doesn’t care about me and my heart.  The disciples knew that Jesus was the son of God, they saw how he cared about them, so in this moment at the beginning of Matthew 21 when Jesus told them to act they submitted knowing they could trust his authority in their life. They had been down the road and back with this man, they had encountered the power of their heavenly father because of this man, and that was something they could submit to.  Jesus also knew his father’s heart and at every turn we see him submitting to God’s authority and plan for his life.  He trusted his life to his father, not to the world, not to the power that could’ve been his if he used his gifts to his own glory.  Then on the other hand we see these men in power, men who have authority over people, and they questioned any person or thing that showed authority outside of their governing.  They didn’t care if Jesus was good for the people, they wanted to stop him for fear that there would be a power shift.  They wanted to silence him before their authority was questioned or stripped.  They submitted and embraced the feeling of power and lording that over others.  They lost sight of God, if ever they did have sight of him.  They decided they knew better than anyone, they placed faith in wisdom of their own not in the wisdom of God.  They hatched a plan and embraced darkness instead of the authority of Christ in their life.  It would be so easy to do that too in our culture in our world, but it doesn’t have to be.  i can get up everyday and embrace the authority of Christ in my life.  i can quit making my life about me.  i don’t have to be a player like those in the parables at the end of Matthew 21, i can choose God everyday, even when the authorities all around me think i am a fool, i can still choose him.  It won’t make sense to the world, it never has, which is why i won’t let the world be my authority, but instead i choose Christ.

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