From that time Jesus began to preach.—Matt. 4:17a
Our Lord heralded the gospel message with certainty. His mission was not to dispute or argue with His opponents but to preach the truth of salvation. He did not merely proclaim certainties, but He did so with the utmost authority (cf. Matt. 7:29).
The scribes could not teach with authority because they had mingled so many man-made opinions and interpretations in with biblical truths that any sense of authority for them had long since disappeared. It was thus quite astounding when the people again heard one like Jesus preach with real authority, as the prophets had (cf. Matt. 7:28–29).
Jesus also preached precisely and only what His Father commissioned Him to proclaim, which no doubt gave added weight to His authority. He testified to this fact quite directly, “I did not speak on My own initiative, but the Father Himself who sent Me has given Me a commandment as to what to say and what to speak” (John 12:49; cf. 3:34; 8:38).
Based on this divine authority, Christ sends us out into the world as His ambassadors by saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations” (Matt. 28:18b–19a). All believers who are faithful witnesses for the gospel will proclaim God’s certain truth by His authority—and with His power.
|The authority of Jesus that registered with the people of His day also had something to do with His authenticity. If people don’t show much respect for God and His Word today, how much of it is due to a lack of authenticity in His people? Pray that we would exude His grace-filled reality.|