Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of August 29, 2010
- Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of August 29, 2010
As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho Press,
here is a selection from our book of daily devotions,
"Living as the Beloved: One Day at a Time," by the
Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.
Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's
meditation. We hope you will be blessed.
Thank you for forwarding this to your friends.
By what authority?
"When Jesus entered the temple, the chief priests
and the elders of the people came to him as he was
teaching, and said, 'By what authority are you doing
these things, and who gave you this authority?'"
The chief priests and religious elders want to know
where Jesus had received his theological authority.
He was a mere upstart, an itinerant and unschooled
street preacher in their opinion. They, on the
other hand, were trained scholars and had dedicated
their lives to maintaining the strict standards of
the religious purity of their faith. So these
critics were throwing down the gauntlet. How dare
Jesus teach with such authority and upset their
cherished religious traditions? Who did he think
he was to challenge their powerful influence on
Jesus was well aware of the chief priests and
religious elders' hostility. As the story continues,
he astutely answers his enemies with a theological
question based on the prior teachings of John the
Baptist. The frustrated priests and elders have
a heated discussion among themselves. No matter
how they answer, Jesus has cleverly put them in an
uncomfortable spot where public opinion would flow
in his favor. Finally the thwarted leaders avoid
any more public debate and admit ignorance to the
question Jesus had posed to them about John the
These questioning priests and elders offer a valuable
insight for us as they question the authority of
Christ. There have been times in my own spiritual
journey when I have questioned and doubted him. I
clearly remember part of my journey involved a time
when I overtly rejected any of his teachings, turned
my back on Jesus, and fled away from anything even
remotely Christian. I personally needed time to
look at other worldviews and spiritual traditions
while experiencing life as a young adult. My journey
to faith involved years of skepticism before I got on
my knees in prayer one day, and admitted I needed
whatever Jesus Christ had for my life. I knew once
I did, the divine authority of his words would change
my life forever.
What about you and your spiritual journey? How have
you struggled with faith in God and the teachings of
Jesus Christ? What and who is the spiritual authority
in your life? Does this divine influence empower and
energize you? If not, perhaps it is time to reexamine
your personal beliefs and spiritual practices.
God, we are all on a spiritual journey searching for
meaning and purpose. Bless our memories and reflections
today as we consider the authority of Jesus. We live
in a confusing world where many conflicting deities of
choice abound. Help us this day to determine whose we
are and who we are. Amen.
Grace and peace,
Chi Rho Press
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