What Jesus Did! 'If God Gave You Authority, Prove It!' — John 2:18-21

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

But the Jewish leaders demanded, "What are you doing? If God gave you authority to [clear the Temple of the money changers and animals], show us a miraculous sign to prove it."
"All right," Jesus replied. "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up."
"What!" they exclaimed. "It has taken forty-six years to build this Temple, and you can rebuild it in three days?"
But when Jesus said "this temple," he meant his own body.
— John 2:18-21 NLT
Illustration of John 2:18-21 NLT — "this temple,"

Key Thought

My, oh my, there is great hostility from the Jewish leaders in this exchange. But, it helps us get to the root of the whole issue of Jesus. What authority does he have to speak to us about important things and to do important things? What authority does he have to correct our religious practices or change our religious traditions? What authority? Ultimate authority! Jesus' death and resurrection make clear that he acts and speaks with God's authority. The people in his day may not have understood when he spoke to them, but we do. The crucified and risen Lord IS God. He is the focus of worship. He is the authority on the will of God. He is the way to the Father.

Today's Prayer

Holy and Almighty God, you are holy and without your grace, I know I am unworthy to come into your presence. Thank you for the gift of Jesus — his loving sacrifice, his willingness to go into the world of death, and his triumph over the grave. Forgive me for holding back part of my heart, part of my will, from his authoritative word. I want to live boldly, based on his authority and honoring your will as he has taught it. In the name of your Son and my Savior, Jesus, I pray. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Matthew 28:18-20
  • Romans 1:2-4
  • Hebrews 3:1-7

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About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.