85 The authoritative word

Luke 20:1-8
Psalms 119:105-112
Ⅰ Lawmakers of Sanhedrin

Jesus who fulfilled the entry into Jerusalem in Chapter 19 seems to have spent at Bethany (or the Mount Olive) at that night; but He seems to have stayed in the temple in daytime, during the the Passion Week. Luke does not show most of the days of week, but when I guess the reference from the other Gospels, the first half of the Passion Week in Chapter 20-21 seems to assign events of Wednesday from Monday. The text of this morning (20:1-8) seems to be the next day of when He entered in Jerusalem, according to Matthew (21:18); but Luke shows no interest at all about it, and just says it "One day". Probably, luke would have some intention about it. I would like to hear it.

"And it came about on one of the days while He was teaching the people in the temple and preaching the gospel, that the chief priests and the scribes with the elders confronted Him, and they spoke, saying to Him, ' Tell us by what authority You are doing these things, or who is the one who gave You this authority?'" (1-2) It is said that they were "the chief priests and the scribes, and the elders" (19:47), but they were lawmakers Sanhedrin Congress. It seems that Jesus taught the people in the front yard of the temple, and preached the gospel, and perhaps He had also healed the sick people; but they would have come excitedly to stop those. Managing the temple region was an important mission of them. And, even if there is no such a thing, Circular letter that Jesus is a dangerous person, had arrived from the Torah scholars and Pharisees of various places including the Galilee. Originally, it was instructions of the lawmakers of Sanhedrin from the first. So, if it is likely that Jesus comes to Jerusalem, of course, they would had piled up consultation for the need to somehow. At there, actions of cleansing the temple of Jesus (19:47) was reported! For them who wait in the wings to try to condemn Jesus, a great opportunity has come. They came to Jesus all together, because their consultation that to punish Jesus or to expel from Jerusalem would have been finished. In the word "confronting" (Nagai translation), such their enthusiasm is felt.


Ⅱ The shadow of death of the cross

"Tell us by what authority You are doing these things, or who is the one who gave You this authority?" They made authority of Jesus a problem. Jesus Himself did not never wield that authority, but they seems to have been sensitive to Its authority. At first glance, it will be able to hear that this is the proper questioning to the person who claims to be the Messiah indeed; but, it is the consideration to the people who are listening around, and in fact, it will be good to say it was the trap which was set up several folds around. "Who is the one who gave You this authority?" Three elements will be considered in this question. First of all, only public institutions capable of giving its authority is Sanhedrin parliament. Sanhedrin Congress was a legislature of Jewish highest, and it had function as the supreme authority administrative agency and even judicial. However, they did not have awarded such authority to Jesus. It is thought local synagogue awarded it, but in that case, it would have been limited to the authority of only local synagogue. To enforce its authority in the temple area of Jerusalem, after all, it was vital that lawmakers of Sanhedrin authorized or awarded it. If Jesus has answered the specific person's name as "from ○○", it is possible to erode the fame of Jesus, as it is invalid. In this way, after killing the buds first, they expected to Jesus the second answer. It is that the "authority from God". They have been well aware that Jesus is acting with the authority of the Messiah, but did not try to touch it. They have tried to pull out the answer of "authority from God" to the last from the mouth of Jesus Himself, it was the purpose of them. Because, that answer is immediately hitting the capital offense. Eventually, this their insistence pulls out the answer of Jesus (22:70), and the death sentence of Jesus will confirm. And it is the case of the third, but they might have considered a possibility of the case that Jesus will not answer anything. There is no legitimate authority, and even in the case cleansed up the temple from the bold, Penal Code of Jewish has established the death penalty also.

Their malicious purposes that "they were trying to destroy Him" (19:47), it was denounced for His emerges. Because they Sanhedrin lawmakers had a pride that they were acting on behalf of the authority of God; would their antennae had reacted especially sensitive to those who claimed Its authority other than oneself? And, they had come over with a grim determination that they never accept the absolute authority of Jesus, from the beginning.


Ⅲ The authoritative word

Would they lawmakers of Sanhedrin had been thinking seriously that they must abide the authority of God? Probably, it would have been so. Because false Messiah had been appeared one after another at that time, it might be said that His authority was about to be attacked under such situation. However, as much as they become so earnest to the authority of God like this, I feel the question that the authority of God must be protected by a man. The authority of God, it is in the region where nobody can intervene, I think. Authority of Jesus was really like that. When they bring it into question more and more, it seems to be clear that He is in the authority of God; and nobody can not to match Him even if they become the bunch. Under His authority, - it might be okay to paraphrase His glory -, what we can do is only to prostrate ourself to Him, and praise Him. The problem of the authority of Jesus was a central problem of the people who accepted Jesus and the people who resisted to Him. We have to listen that all the people, including our modern, are asked whether to confess "Jesus is my Lord", or to deny Him. Probably, Luke would have been aware of that he has removed the word of "the next day" from this article, I think.

On the contrary, Jesus asked to Lawmakers of Sanhedrin. It was not that He dodged their attacks, but rather, it was a sincere question from the One as God Himself. "I shall also ask you a question, and you tell Me: 'Was the baptism of John from heaven or from men?'" (3-4) "Heaven" is the "God" of course. Jesus said once "But the Pharisees and the lawyers rejected God's purpose for themselves, not having been baptized by John." (7:30); but now they remember "Why did you not believe him?" (5), and they are thinking about how to start their own. They were such ones; but if they repent, and admit God's hand in John, and answer "it is from heaven", it was also "Yes" for Jesus. Then, Jesus will accept them also; in this question, rich grace gospel of God seems to be hidden.

After they thought "If we say, 'From men' all the people will stone us to death, for they are convinced that John was a prophet." (6), they answered that they did not know where it came from. Jesus also answered to them, "Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things.". Probably, Luke would have heard it was a hold rather than a condemnation to them. We will hear the words on the cross which only he wrote it down there. "Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing." (23:34) Probably, in the modern which seems to be far away from God as well will be seen the same. If the words of God are heard as an authoritative thing truly, pent-up various modern problems will disappear. I hope to speak Such Words.



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