“When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching, because he taught as one who had authority, and not as their teachers of the law.” (Matthew 7:28-29)
Every time Jesus opened his mouth people reacted. This crowd was stunned by an inherent “authority,” which had nothing to do with the beauty of his oratory or the tone of his delivery. It wasn’t bravado or privileged breeding that he brought to the table.
While the teachers of the Jews had lost their authority by selling out for security and prosperity, he resisted the temptation to derive power through complicity with the empire. Israel’s teachers submitted unwaveringly to the empire to earn its favors; Jesus fearlessly preached a subversive message earning Rome’s disfavor, so they said of him:
“We have found this man subverting our nation… He stirs up the people all over Judea by his teaching. He started in Galilee and has come all the way here.” (Luke 23:2, 5)
These are excerpts from a book I hope to publish in the near future on the Sermon on the Mount called: What In The World? Some Moral, Social, and Politically Disruptive Implications of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount.
The book cover at the top is a book I highly recommend. Craig Greenfield of “Alongsiders International” is the real deal and his book is too!