Who made you the judge?

Mark 14:54-65

They took Jesus to the high priest’s home where the leading priests, the elders, and the teachers of religious law had gathered. Meanwhile, Peter followed him at a distance and went right into the high priest’s courtyard. There he sat with the guards, warming himself by the fire.

 Inside, the leading priests and the entire high council were trying to find evidence against Jesus, so they could put him to death. But they couldn’t find any. Many false witnesses spoke against him, but they contradicted each other.  Finally, some men stood up and gave this false testimony: “We heard him say, ‘I will destroy this Temple made with human hands, and in three days I will build another, made without human hands.’” But even then they didn’t get their stories straight!

Then the high priest stood up before the others and asked Jesus, “Well, aren’t you going to answer these charges? What do you have to say for yourself?” But Jesus was silent and made no reply. Then the high priest asked him, “Are you the Messiah, the Son of the Blessed One?”

 Jesus said, “I AM. And you will see the Son of Man seated in the place of power at God’s right hand  and coming on the clouds of heaven.  ”

 Then the high priest tore his clothing to show his horror and said, “Why do we need other witnesses? You have all heard his blasphemy. What is your verdict?”

“Guilty!” they all cried. “He deserves to die!”

Then some of them began to spit at him, and they blindfolded him and beat him with their fists. “Prophesy to us,” they jeered. And the guards slapped him as they took him away.

 How is it that Jesus’ statement that He is the Messiah is judged blasphemous?  How did they expect to know who the Messiah is?  What gave them the ability to be the only ones able to determine who the Messiah would be?  Jesus did not answer the accusations…he did answer the direct question.  For that answer He was judged blasphemous and guilty of death?  Who gave them the authority to judge if God was God?  They took it upon themselves…

Mankind continually steps into that place of judging another as if they have that right.  Where is the source of authority?  Who grants it?  What makes us think we have that right?  Are there any among us that are pure, holy, righteous; not guilty of any wrong?  Jesus went about doing good…he spoke against injustice and for that he drew the attention of those who wanted him silenced.

 Power is a deceiver and addictive.  Real or not, even when perceived, it  allows for actions that many times are destructive.  In contrast, the power granted and used by the Holy One produces good.  Let’s tap into that power through the recognition of who He is, what He does, who he says we are.  Let’s pray and produce good; defeat evil.  2 Chronicles 7:14  “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves  and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.

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The sign of the vultures…

Matthew 24: 26-31

So if someone tells you, ‘Look, the Messiah is out in the desert,’ don’t bother to go and look. Or, ‘Look, he is hiding here,’ don’t believe it!27For as the lightning flashes in the east and shines to the west, so it will be when the Son of Man comes.  28Just as the gathering of vultures shows there is a carcass nearby, so these signs indicate that the end is near.

29Immediately after the anguish of those days,

the sun will be darkened,

the moon will give no light,

the stars will fall from the sky,

and the powers in the heavens will be shaken

30And then at last, the sign that the Son of Man is coming will appear in the heavens, and there will be deep mourning among all the peoples of the earth. And they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31And he will send out his angels with the mighty blast of a trumpet, and they will gather his chosen ones from all over the world—from the farthest ends of the earth and heaven. – NLT

 So if anyone tells you, ‘There he is, out in the desert,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it. Jesus states His return will be as obvious as vultures circling identify the location of the carcass.  Jesus’ return will be obvious, not hidden. It will be seen by all and that is significant.  Many have already been deceived by the claims of enticing leaders, some to the extreme of actually “going to the desert” and have suffered for it.  When Christ gives a warning it is wise to heed it.

If we are spending time in the Word, reading and asking the Holy Spirit to give us understanding, we will not be victims of some enticing leader saying things that fascinate and draw a crowd.  If we continually hold everything that is passed for something ‘new” to the light of the Scriptures, individually, we will see the truth and we won’t need someone to ‘warn’ us or advise us as to what the truth is.  Be mature enough to be seeking for that truth ourselves.  Be strong enough in our faith to gain understanding through the Holy Spirit’s presence within us.  Trust God for knowledge, as Proverbs plainly tells us, The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge

We are clearly told not to go after; follow those who make such a claim.  No claim will need to be made, it will be obvious it is Christ returning.  We won’t need to seek him in a desert or hidden in an inner room.  The sun, moon, other heavenly bodies will all lead the way to know his return is imminent.  It could be seen as a frightening time, death, destruction, then the sun blocked and darkened as well as the moon, stars falling, shaken…doesn’t sound like fun stuff but for the elect it ironically could be cause to rejoice.

Jesus is telling us we do not need to fear, there will be no doubt…no fear… for his elect!! 

Much is said about this today, stay immersed in His Word.  Be clear on what Christ says.