But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, (Matthew 5:44)
When Moses came down from Mount Horeb he delivered the written commandments of God to Israel.
When Jesus preached among the people He delivered the oral commandments of God to humanity.
In those days when Rome ruled, the land where Jesus preached was a major transaction point of ancient trade routes where people from all nationalities crossed path.
People who heard Jesus preached were amazed He spoke with authority. The words of Jesus transcended people’s perspective of sociopolitical life, His words pierced straight into the hearts and souls of mankind.
People’s hearts were convicted Jesus spoke the truth, and were convinced they should do something about what Jesus said.
Jesus represented the spoken authority of God. People responded in repentance to Jesus’ message.
People were healed by Jesus’ spoken word –
But the centurion replied, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof, but only say the word, and my servant will be healed. (Matthew 8:8)
That is true even till today. Jesus spoke the word and the servant was healed.
In those days many had frustrated Jesus’ ministry with disbelieves and doubts. But Jesus was greatly encouraged by the centurion’s faith, trust and confident in His authority.
That centurion was a man of authority, and a man who exercised authority by giving commands.
That centurion honored Jesus for who Jesus is – the spoken command and authority of God Almighty.
Jesus was impressed by the centurion’s faith and a man’s life was saved due to that centurion’s faith in Jesus‘ spoken command.
The disciples were amazed even the wind and the waves obey Jesus’ spoken command.
And he awoke and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Peace! Be still!” And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. (Mark 4:39)
Imagine a typhoon coming your way.
Best thing to do – run as far away as you can.
Well, the disciples were in a boat out in the sea, nowhere to run. We’re not sure if they had any life-jacket with them. They must have been busy trying to throw all the water and fishes back out into the sea.
But wait a minute they remembered Jesus was on board with them – in times of emergency always consult your master, or better still get your master to solve the problem.
We’re not sure what the disciples expected Jesus to do, but they did ask for help. Whatever Jesus can do please do it quick before the storm hit them.
Jesus spoke the word and the storm turned to calm.
The disciples were amazed, but what else did they expect Jesus to do?
What Jesus had been doing – preach the word, teach the word, speak the word. So if the disciples asked for help in the midst of a stormy sea, what did they expect from Jesus?
Jesus spoke the word and the dead was raised –
When he had said these things, he cried out with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out.” (John 11:43)
Even the dead listen to Jesus.
While many of the living had turned a deaf ear to Jesus – this dead man Lazarus heard Jesus calling and woke up!
The Jews who saw Lazarus coming back to life after being dead for 4 days – speechless, dumb-folded, nevertheless were finally convinced this Jesus is the Messiah they were waiting for.
The Jews were convinced Jesus had the power and authority over life and death through His spoken command as God Almighty.
The Jews remembered how the prophets of old who were true messengers of God were able to call the dead back to living as according to God’s will. They knew this Jesus represented the oral commandments of God Almighty.
The high priest was furious “now why didn’t I do that?”
People got tired of stiff lifeless nagging from the high priest and went to listen to those life-giving words preached forth by Jesus.
A tree was judged by Jesus’ spoken command
And seeing a fig tree by the wayside, he went to it and found nothing on it but only leaves. And he said to it, “May no fruit ever come from you again!” And the fig tree withered at once. (Matthew 21:19)
The larger part of Jesus ministry had warmed the hearts of many through healing, comforting words of encouraging.
This incident which was also recorded in the Gospel of Mark came as a shock and warning to His disciples.
For all the reasons and explanations provided by scholars and theologians, there can be one final verdict –
Jesus’ spoken words are final authority – and all things on earth and all things created are made subject to Jesus’ authority, which also mean humanity had been made subject under Jesus’ authority.
Apparently Jesus’ disciple like Peter, James and John paid attention to what Jesus said. For after the formation of the New Testament church, multiple times they were persecuted and threaten with death and more severe punishment but Peter’s faith and confession was –
“We should listen to God and not men”. Before we forget, Peter was referring to Jesus as God.
The most important thing Jesus said –
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6)
Jesus Himself has spoken and this is it.
If Jesus is the way, that means there is no other way.
If Jesus is the way, which means all other ways are heading the opposite directions.
Humanity in search of the true living God – we have our answer in Jesus.
For the Jews who had high regards to Moses, they were offended by the words of Jesus.
Nevertheless the life and ministry of Jesus have proven it – Jesus is the spoken authority of God Almighty.
Jesus is the way to eternity, peace and life.
We have the message of Jesus among us.
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