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THE PROPER SOURCE OF AUTHORITY 
(Heath Rogers)


"Now when He came into the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people confronted Him as He was teaching, and said, ‘By what authority are You doing these things? And who gave You this authority?'" (Matt. 21:23).

The chief priests and elders who confronted Jesus were asking legitimate questions. Jesus needed authority for the things He did in the temple, and this authority had to come from the proper source.

In last week's article, we considered some improper sources of authority that people use regarding their religious beliefs and practices: themselves, traditions, creeds of men, what the preacher says, the results accomplished, and the Old Testament. In this article, we will consider the proper source for authority in religious matters.

Notice our Lord's response to the questions asked by the chief priests and enders. "But Jesus answered and said to them, ‘I also will ask you one thing, which if you tell Me, I likewise will tell you by what authority I do these things: The baptism of John - where was it from? From heaven or from men?'" (Matt. 21:24-25a).

According to Jesus, authority in religious matters can only come from one of two possible sources: from heaven (God) or from men. The reasoning of the chief priests and elders shows they properly understood that authority in religious matters must come from God and not from men.

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