Summary: Who is Jesus? Where is the proof?
Today is the day when all questions will finally be answered. Everything is decided today. Well, maybe not everything. And maybe not any important questions are answered today. What is today? For those that follow professional football, it’s a big day – it’s Superbowl Sunday. All the questions about who is the best team in the NFL will finally be answered later today. Everyone that’s a football fan has an opinion, and you can all take your questions and opinions to the Superbowl, because that’s where everything is settled and decided with authority.
Wouldn’t it be nice if there was a place where all the real important questions of life could be answered – a place where everything important is decided? We live in a world filled with questions, and filled with opinions. What really happens after a person dies – do you know? What is the purpose of life – why am I here? What really is moral and not moral? And when I do sin and I feel guilty, how do I get rid of that? Where do I go with my guilt? If there is a heaven, how do I get there? What does God want from me? There are many questions, important ones. And in our world, many opinions! Is there a place where everything is settled? Where all the opinions fade away, and everything is decided with authority?
There is a place, and you know that place. It’s the Bible. It’s the words of Jesus Christ. He, along with his Word, is the ultimate authority on all things. Today we’re going to ponder what a blessing it is to have Jesus and his Word in our lives, as we live in a world filled with so many questions and opinions.
Jesus revealed his authority in our Gospel lesson for today. He was the guest preacher that day at the synagogue in Capernaum. As he spoke, the Bible says that the people were amazed at the way he taught. He spoke with so much authority. He was so sure of what he was saying. Back then, most of the teachers of the law wouldn’t teach with authority. They would quote other rabbis to back up what they were saying. But Jesus didn’t need to quote anybody. He was the Word incarnate. He was the light of the world. He was the way, the truth, and the life, and as he spoke the truth – and as you listened to him – you knew that you were listening to someone who had authority.
Then Jesus showed his authority by performing a miracle. There was a man in the crowd possessed by an evil spirit. The evil spirit interrupted Jesus’ sermon. Jesus commanded the evil to be quiet, and to come out of the man, and that evil spirit immediately obeyed, because Jesus’ words had authority. There was no asking a second time. No saying please. No negotiation. Immediate obedience to Jesus’ authority. The people in the synagogue were amazed at what they were seeing and hearing. The words of Jesus were so powerful. And his miracle was so impressive. There was no question that day, who was in charge at that synagogue – the Lion of Judah was standing among the flock of Israel.
Today in our culture, there is a question about who the ultimate authority is. Who has the answers to all the important questions of life? Where do you go, when you have difficult issues and problems and stress and worry, and you need answers? Is it Jesus? Is it his Word, the Bible?
In our culture, the answer is no. “I don’t think you can trust the Bible,” people say. “I don’t think you can trust Jesus Christ as the answer to all of your questions and doubts and worries.” Trust yourself, people say. Trust your friends. Trust people who have degrees and write books. Trust people who are rich and famous. But don’t trust Jesus.” That’s the message of our culture. And that distrust, that doubt, can sometimes creep into our way of thinking. “Can I really trust the words of Jesus,” we sometimes wonder. Sometimes the Bible becomes the last place we look when we have questions or need comfort or strength. It’s the last resort. The book gathers dust on our shelves. All because we doubt the power of the Word of God.
Have you ever doubted? Have you ever wondered if you can trust the words of Jesus, as they are recorded in this book? What do you do when you feel that way? Where is the best place to go? The best place to go, is right back to the words and actions of Jesus Christ. When you feel yourself doubting, go to the Bible – the Word of God, which is living and active, sharper than any double edged sword. Let the Word you’re your doubt away. Look at what he says and does here.