Excellent commentary on the authority of Jesus from Mark Driscoll:
Now, let me ask this of you. The whole point here is about Jesus’ authority. Do you truly, really believe that Jesus has all authority? Do you live as if Jesus has functional authority? See, I’ve seen some people, they love psychology and they turn Jesus into a really good psychologist. Or they love sociology and they turn Jesus into a really good sociologist. Or they’re into politics and they turn Jesus into kind of a moral politician. Or they’re into spirituality and they take out all the God stuff but they leave all the “do good works for the poor” stuff and they turn Jesus just into a spiritual person.
I’ve seen people who don’t believe in miracles because they’re more naturalistic and, for them, their ideology and their philosophy is in authority so if the Bible says that Jesus performed miracles they say, “No, he didn’t.” I’ve seen people who hold religious pluralism up as their highest authority, so when Jesus says “I’m God” they say, “Well, that’s probably not true.”
How about you? I’ve seen people even do this with sin in their life. There’s something in their life that’s sinful, that is displeasing to Jesus. And they say, “Well, that was a long time ago. That was a different culture. We’ve evolved. Things have changed. That was primitive.” What they’re saying is something is now in authority over Jesus. Someone is in authority over Jesus. Might be me, my religious commitment, my political cause, my view of the world, my philosophical presumptions and presuppositions, my financial commitment, my political preference, whatever it is, my sexual orientation, my religious affiliation, whatever it might be—what you’re saying is, “Yeah, there’s Jesus, but he’s not the highest authority.” Someone or something is above him.
It was the debate in that day; it’s the debate in our day. As Mars Hill Church, we believe that Jesus is Lord. That’s a simple way of saying he’s the highest authority. There’s no one equal to Jesus, there’s no one above Jesus. He is in highest authority. When he says something, we believe it. When he commands something, by the grace of God, we seek to obey it.
And if someone or something should disagree with him, they are wrong and they need to repent and agree with him and not just walk away, but change their mind and say, “I’m wrong, I’m sorry.” And friends, it’s not that we’re right, it’s that he’s right. Because the truth is, we’re all wrong. None of us begin submitting to Jesus. We all have sin and folly. We all think we’re right when we’re wrong. And we all have to say, “I’m wrong and I’m sorry. Jesus, you’re right.”