Saturday 15 November 2014

Tuesday of Week 1 Year 1

What does it mean to have authority? The word "authority" can be used to mean power given by the state (in the form of government, judges, police officers, etc.) or by academic knowledge of an area (someone can be an authority on a subject). However, these forms of authority do not last forever and do not always command the respect and voluntary obedience of others. Also, we have seen many instances of people who have been granted such authority turning out to be arrogant, conceited, corrupted or misusing their position for their own purposes. These people may have so called political or intellectual authority, but they may not necessarily have moral or spiritual authority.

In today's Gospel, we see Jesus whose "teaching made a deep impression on them because, unlike the scribes, he taught them with authority." Also, the Gospel tells us: "The people were so astonished that they started asking each other what it all meant. 'Here is a teaching that is new' they said 'and with authority behind it: he gives orders even to unclean spirits and they obey him.'" How was Jesus different from the scribes, and what sort of authority did He hold? Jesus was different because He had moral and spiritual authority, as He was one with the Father. Jesus shows us that His authority stems from the fact that what He is teaching and doing is not for His own personal gratification or benefit, but for the greater glory of God. Jesus is inviting us to follow His example and grow in our moral and spiritual authority by maintaining a good relationship with God. Are we willing to nurture this form of authority, or are we still wandering around seeking for temporary authority?

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