Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Authority Struggle

Jesus ministry from beginning to end was a struggle over authority. The good news of the kingdom of God upset the kings, governors, priests and nobles who exercised authority in Israel. These authorities understood the nature of kingdoms, so they knew what was going on. They realised that the appearance of this new kingdom would bring a shift in with authority in Israel. If the government of God gained authority, they would lose authority, power and privilege. The authorities understood that they had to oppose this new kingdom, so when Jesus was teaching, he was frequently challenged about his authority. His trial before Pilate, turned into an argument over authority.

When Jesus was born in Bethlehem, Herod recognised the threat, as soon as the wise men announced that a new king had been born. The threat to his authority was so serious that he massacred all the boys born in Bethlehem.

Herod was furious, and he gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old (Matt 2:16).
Jesus was just a baby, but he was dangerous to Herod, because he represented a challenge to his authority. Herod used ruthless power to eliminate him while he could, but he failed.

Jesus challenge to authority goes on, and those with authority still try to destroy it, sometimes with the sword, and often with word and beliefs.

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