Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Full authority

Today’s Reading: John 10:17-18 (NIV)

[Jesus said,] 17 “The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life – only to take it up again. 18 No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”

Good morning!

Authority is a powerful word. My dictionary defines the word authority as the power to enforce laws, exact obedience, command, determine, or judge; the power or right to make decisions. Whose authority do you rely upon for daily living?

When I was a little girl, I quickly learned that it was my dad who had full authority over our household. He was the one I would answer to if I misbehaved at school. My measuring stick for life was rooted in the things my father said. Daddy took his authority over our family quite seriously, and we were not allowed to question him about much of anything. It was an eye-opening moment when I first realized that my father’s beliefs might be a tad bit biased. What happens when the authority we’ve relied upon turns out not to be completely reliable? How does this revelation affect what we believe, and how we choose to live out our days?

Our school teachers had a lot more authority forty years ago, than they do today. Our educators risk their lives each day in the classrooms where they teach. It is their deep desire to open the minds and hearts of young men and women who will one day carry the future of our world, which compels them to remain faithful in their chosen vocation year after year.

The authority of Christ came from the highest authority ever. His heavenly Father, the creator and author of life, gave Jesus full authority to willingly lay down His life and pick it back up again, through death and resurrection. Although His disciples didn’t understand what Jesus meant, they knew His authority came from above. There was no question in their minds that this man was not sent but for a greater mission and purpose. Jesus is willing and able to become a perfect and holy sacrifice for humanity’s sin.

We desperately need the wisdom of a higher authority to guide our lives. Jesus looked to His heavenly Father for full authority to do the work He came to do. I pray we will choose to follow the example of Christ and seek out the Father’s wisdom each day. Won’t you open your Bible and take a closer look at the living Word?

Grace and peace,

Deb Spaulding

Faith UMC - St. Charles, MO


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