October 31, 2022 – Monday
Mark 11:27-28 RGT
27 Then they came to Jerusalem again. And as He walked in the Temple, the chief priests came to Him, and the scribes and the elders,
28 and said to Him, “By what authority do You do these things? And who gave You this authority, that You should do these things?”
The RGT is the Revised Geneva Translation from the 1599 Geneva Bible (GNV ) which King James I hated and thus commissioned what we know today as the King James Bible (KJV).
But enough of that, let’s look at our two verses for today. First for some context, the they came to Jerusalem are Jesus and His disciples. And it was Jesus who walked in the Temple continuing to preach the Good News. The chief priests and the scribes and the elders were not happy with Him and asked Him a question, “By what authority do You do these things? And who gave You this authority, that You should do these things?”
Jesus had shaken the foundation of the money-making schemes going on in the temple when He arrived and in verses 15-19, 15 And Jesus went into the Temple and began to cast out those who sold and bought in the Temple and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers and the seats of those who sold doves; 16 nor would He allow anyone to carry merchandise through the Temple. 17 And He taught, saying to them, “Is it not written, ‘My house shall be called the house of prayer, to all nations’!? But you have made it a den of thieves!” This enraged the Scribes and the chief priests as we read in the next two verses, 18 And the Scribes and chief priests heard it, and sought how to destroy Him. For they feared Him, because the whole multitude was astonished at His doctrine. 19 But when evening came, Jesus went out of the city.
They wanted Him destroyed and dead because they feared Him. Somehow, this itinerant rabbi-prophet seemed able to act with complete impunity and they did not know what to do about it. So they simply sought His death. That’s why they came to Him asking, “By what authority do You do these things? And who gave You this authority, that You should do these things?” They were hoping to be able to use His answer to discredit Him and make it possible for them to arrest Him. It was almost like a modern-day question, “Please answer yes or no, have you stopped beating your wife?” Of course, any yes or no answer would be used to trap the person being questioned. He would have to object to the question somehow as not being valid.
Jesus did something similar, by following their question up with one of His own. 29 Then Jesus answered, and said to them, “I will also ask you a certain thing. Answer Me, and I will tell you by what authority I do these things. 30 “The baptism of John, was it from Heaven, or from man? answer Me.” Now they were trapped as the following verses reveal, 31 And they thought amongst themselves, saying, “If we shall say, ‘From Heaven’, He will say, ‘Why then did you not believe him?’ 32 “But if we say, ‘From man’, we fear the people.” For all men counted John as a Prophet, indeed. 33 Then they answered, and said to Jesus, “We cannot tell.” And Jesus answered, and said to them, “Nor will I tell you by what authority I do these things.” Extraordinary!
Bottom Line: They, in reality, feared His authority. Notice they asked not about how He healed so many or had fed so many. They were only concerned when His authority upset their golden money-maker within the temple. Jesus cared only that the temple be used for its intended purpose. The same should be true of our churches today.
Prayer: Almighty God, Thank You for such guidance from Your Son about how our churches should be focused on Your word and prayer along with praise and worship. – In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Riley D. Driver – Pastor
Calvary Chapel of Dayton