The Authority of Jesus

Matthew 7:28–29 (ESV) — 28 And when Jesus finished these sayings, the crowds were astonished at his teaching, 29 for he was teaching them as one who had authority, and not as their scribes.

This is the last passage from our look at the Sermon on the Mount recorded in Matthew chapters 5-7. The sermon ends with the people astonished by the things Jesus had been teaching them. He was saying things they had never heard before and he was teaching them in a way the scribes did not. Jesus was teaching them with authority!

What does it mean that Jesus was teaching as one who had authority? The way the scribes would teach was to quote the teaching of rabbis who had come before them. They would say, “Rabbi so-and-so says this about this topic.” Jesus did not draw from the teaching of others to make his case in his teaching. He spoke from his own position of authority. He said things like. “You have heard that it was said, but I say…” This was quite surprising.

Why would Jesus teach in this manner? Jesus drew from his own authority because it was greater than any other. He was the Son of God. The Gospel of John tells us the Jesus is the Word made flesh. Jesus did not need any other to confirm the truth of his teaching because his teaching came from himself. He was the source and the final authority on what the word of God said. Have you come to recognize Jesus’ authority and submit to it?

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