OceanSide church of Christ
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THE AUTHORITY OF THE SERVANT OF GOD
Victor M. Eskew
A. In Mark 10:45, Jesus plainly declares Himself to be a servant.
For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give himself a ransom for man.
B. Most servants do not have power and authority. This, however, is not the case with Jesus, the Servant of God.
1. Jesus wields great power and authority.
2. In Mark 11 we see the power of the Christ. We’ve entitled this chapter: “The Authority of the Servant of God.”
I. AUTHORITY PRAISED (Mark 11:1-11)
A. At the beginning of this chapter, Jesus has made the 17-mile journey from Jericho to Bethphage (Mark 10:46; 11:1). He is not one mile from Jerusalem.
B. Jesus will now be involved in what some have called “The Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem.”
1. The Colt (Mark 11:1-7)
a. The Directions (Mark 11:1-3)
1) Colt – not a horse of war
2) Donkey – indicating humility
3) Never been sat upon – a sacred purpose
4) The fulfillment of prophecy (Zech. 9:9-10)
b. The Doing (Mark 11:4-7)
2. The Coming (Mark 11:8)
3. The Cheers (Mark 11:9-10)
a. The people open their cheers and close them with: “Hosanna.”
1) A transliteration of the Greek word
2) Meaning: “Save now,” or, “Save now, we beg.”
b. This salvation has two statements sandwiched between it.
Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord: blessed be the kingdom of our father David, that cometh in the name of the Lord.
1) Jesus brought salvation (Acts 4:12), and it is found in His kingdom, the church (Col. 1:13; Acts 2:47).
2) NOTE: Those who cheered knew a Messiah was coming, but they did not know what kind of Messiah, nor did they understand the nature of His kingdom. Soon their shouts of cheer would be turned into shouts of condemnation.
c. Lesson: This Jesus is still worthy of praise and adoration.
1) Revelation 5:12
Saying with a loud voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing.
2) Every Christian should desire to praise Him. We know now what they did not know then.
4. The Consideration (Mark 11:11)
a. Reviewed the temple area (Mark 11:11a)
b. Retired to Bethany (Mark 11:11b)
II. AUTHORITY PRESENTED (Mark 11:12-19)
A. The Curse of the Fig Tree (Mark 11:12-14)
1. The Desire: …he was hungry (Mark 11:12)
2. The Disappointment: …he found nothing but leaves (Mark 11:13)
a. This verse gives us come difficulty due to the last words of the verse: …for the time of figs was not yet. If the time of figs was not yet, why did Jesus anticipate figs on the tree.
1) Answer: The time of figs means the time of harvesting figs.
a) Leaves on the tree indicated figs
b. It was not the time after the figs had been harvested
b. The tree promised fruit, but was unfruitful.
c. Lesson: The tree represents any who should be a fruitful tree, but are unproductive.
1) The Jewish nation of Jesus’ day
2) The slothful, lukewarm Christian
3. The Decree (Mark 11:14)
And Jesus answered and said unto it, No man eat fruit of thee hereafter for ever.
a. Jesus’ words indicate His power over nature. It is He who created all things (John 1:1-3), and it is He who can condemn.
b. There is also a warning in His words to all who claim to be His and lead unproductive lives. Here we see the “tragedy of fruitlessness.”
C. The Cleansing of the Temple (Mark 11:15-19)
1. Jesus’ Indignation (Mark 11:15-16)
2. Jesus’ Proclamation (Mark 11:17)
And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? But ye have made it a den of thieves.
a. Jesus shows His authority within the spiritual realm. He had the courage to oppose even the religious leaders of His day.
b. NOTE: It is possible to turn things that are pure and holy into that which is evil and corrupt.
3. Jewish Fabrication (Mark 11:18-19)
a. Destruction (Mark 11:18)
And the scribe and chief priests heard it, and sought how they might destroy him: for they feared him…
1) Fear causes individuals to do desperate things.
2) Many just want to do away with things they fear.
b. Departure (Mark 11:19)
IV. AUTHORITY PROMISED (Mark 11:20-26)
A. The Dead Tree (Mark 11:20-21)
1. Withered tree (Mark 11:20)
And in the morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots.
2. Wondering disciple (Mark 11:21)
B. The Doctrine Taught (Mark 11:22-26)
1. Faith (Mark 11:22-24)
And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God.
a. Faith in challenges (Mark 22:23)
b. Faith in communicating with God (Mark 11:24)
2. Forgiveness (Mark 11:25-26)
V. AUTHORITY PROBED (Mark 11:27-33)
A. The Demand of the Religious Leaders (Mark 11:27-28)
…and they say unto him, by what authority doest thou these things? And who gave thee this authority to do these things?
1. All religious actions demand authority (Col. 3:17).
2. The Jewish leaders recognized this and wanted to know where Jesus received His authority.
B. The Desire of Jesus for an Answer (Mark 11:29-30)
…the baptism of John, was it from heaven, or of men? Answer me.
1. There are only two sources for all authority: heaven or man.
2. If all things spring from authority, then John’s baptism had to have authority.
3. This question puts the Jewish leaders on the horns of a dilemma.
C. The Dilemma (Mark 11:31-33a)
1. Heaven: Why then did ye not believe him? (obedience)
2. Man: Feared the people who held John to be a prophet (courage)
3. Answer: We cannot tell (politics)
4. Alternative answers today:
a. It really doesn’t matter.
b. We really don’t care.
D. The Disregard (Mark 11:33b)
And Jesus answering said unto them, Neither do I tell you by what authority I do these things.
A. Jesus continues to possess all authority today (Matt. 28:18)
And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is give unto me in heaven and in earth.
B. Our resolves should be three-fold:
1. To praise Jesus for His authority
2. To tap into that authority by praying in faith and with forgiveness
3. To never question, or rebel against the authority of Christ