Texts: Matthew 8; Matthew 9:1-8
Other Texts: Matthew 7:28; Matthew 28; Romans 8:31-39; 2 Peter 1:3
What is authority? A definition might be ‘the power to command obedience or the right to control something or someone’. Without authority, it is hard to command anyone to do anything.
What gave Jesus His authority? Jesus knew what he was talking about. He taught with authority. His approval came from God, not from men.
Five encounters with Jesus:
The leper had no question about Jesus’ ability to heal him. It’s also interesting that Jesus wanted Him to go to the priest. Even though Jesus was a far greater authority than the priest he still followed the normal routine and honored them.
We know that the centurion was a very important man. He could well have felt that he deserved some help from Jesus, but that’s not his attitude at all. He doesn’t feel worthy for Jesus to even enter his house. He recognized Jesus’ authority over sickness.
Because of this man’s faith, Jesus performed the healing of his servant without even going to his house. In contrast to the faith of this centurion, the Jewish leaders did not recognize Jesus’ authority.
The disciples were desperate. At the end of themselves, they come to Jesus. They had nowhere else to go. With a word, He calmed the wind and waves. “Even the wind and waves obey Him!”
Jesus knew that these men needed help. He delivers the men, and the people of the town recognize the power of Jesus. Their response, however, was to plead with Him to leave their region!
They were satisfied with their life as it was. No doubt they had problems, but they did not bring them to Jesus. Sometimes we can do this ourselves — keep our distance from Jesus because we are afraid of what He might ask of us.
Jesus, to prove that He had the authority to forgive sins, healed the man. The response of the crowd was to glorify God. Jesus was so close to the Father that when people saw Him work they glorified Him.
Bring our problems to Jesus
Have confidence in the power and authority of Jesus