MONDAY 3RD WEEK OF ADVENT GOSPEL, REFLECTION AND COMMENTARY. BY WHAT AUTHORITY ARE YOU DOING THESE THINGS? (Jn 1:6–8, 19–28).
GOSPEL OF MONDAY, 3RD WEEK OF ADVENT
When he had come into the temple area, the chief priests and the elders of the people approached him as he was teaching and said, “By what authority are you doing these things? And who gave you this authority?” Jesus said to them in reply, “I shall ask you one question, and if you answer it for me, then I shall tell you by what authority I do these things. Where was John’s baptism from? Was it of heavenly or of human origin?” They discussed this among themselves and said, “If we say ‘Of heavenly origin,’ he will say to us, ‘Then why did you not believe him?’ But if we say, ‘Of human origin,’ we fear the crowd, for they all regard John as a prophet.” So they said to Jesus in reply, “We do not know.” He himself said to them, “Neither shall I tell you by what authority I do these things.”
GOSPEL COMMENTARY OF THE NAVARRE BIBLE, COMMENTARY TO THE GOSPEL OF ST. JOHN (with permission)
- 23-27 When the chief priests and elders ask “By what authority are you doing these things?” they are referring both to his teaching and to his self-assured public actions — throwing the traders out of the Temple, entering Jerusalem in triumph, allowing the children to acclaim him, curing the sick, etc.
- What they want him to do is to prove that he has authority to act in this way or to admit openly that he is the Messiah.
- However, Jesus knows that they are not well-intentioned and he declines to give them a direct answer; he prefers to put a question to them that forces them to make their own attitude clear. He seeks to provoke them into examining their consciences and changing their whole approach.
TOPIC: DO YOU THINK YOU ARE A GOOD LEADER IN YOUR HOME, WORKPLACE, ORGANIZATION AND COMMUNITY?
Today’s gospel (Matthew 21:23-27) Gives us an idea of what Jesus had to deal with in the religious authority of his time. Prior to this passage, Jesus just drove out the traders from the temple and now He was being questioned by the chief priests and elders by whose authority He did this and all that He preached. The authorities of His time wielded enormous power and dared anyone who contradicted them with persecution and even death. That is why they eventually had Jesus killed.
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