When people put politics ahead of truth, their credibility suffers. The truth is the truth. When you try to run from truth, you find it gets to your destination before you. Today we see Jesus interact with some leaders who bear some similarity to 21st century characters…
1 One day as Jesus was teaching the people in the temple courts and proclaiming the good news, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, together with the elders, came up to him. 2 “Tell us by what authority you are doing these things,” they said. “Who gave you this authority?”
3 He replied, “I will also ask you a question. Tell me: 4 John’s baptism—was it from heaven, or of human origin?”
5 They discussed it among themselves and said, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will ask, ‘Why didn’t you believe him?’ 6 But if we say, ‘Of human origin,’ all the people will stone us, because they are persuaded that John was a prophet.”
7 So they answered, “We don’t know where it was from.”
8 Jesus said, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I am doing these things.”
Truth and peace become malleable in the hands of the corrupt. That was my comment about Jezebel and Joram yesterday. Pontius Pilate was sidetracked by the same corruption. And it’s a shot across the bow of truth when people are more interested in their political position than in what is right.
As much as you might think this is about American politics, it is not. This may shed light on American politics, yet isn’t that what God’s word does? God’s Word is the light which shines into the darkness and the darkness cannot overcome it… (John 1).
Jesus’ opponents were always asking what authority he was drawing upon to teach and heal and complete his miracles. Jesus, knowing their hearts, answered with a question about John’s baptism. His question put the chief priests, teachers, and elders between truth and their personal agendas.
It was lose-lose for them because they hadn’t believed John or Jesus because both of them represented threats to the authorities’ control of power. The people, however, believed John was a prophet – speaking against John was political suicide. And so they would not answer.
When people put politics ahead of truth, their credibility suffers.
The truth is the truth. What does this mean today? Well, truth be told, many people ignore or refuse to believe in Jesus because of what it would mean to their own control or power over their lives, their commitment to their personal darkness, and their unwillingness to submit to anyone or anything. Jesus represents ‘the Man’ to them.
Stick it to the man…
Except this is truth. And when you try to run from truth, you find it gets to your destination before you. Ask Jonah? He ran and couldn’t escape the truth. If you are running from the Lord and trying to twist truth to suit yourself, learn from the religious leaders of Jesus’ time.
You can run but you can’t hide from truth…