As they passed by in the morning, they saw the fig tree withered away to its roots. And Peter remembered and said to him, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree that you cursed has withered.” And Jesus answered them, “Have faith in God. Truly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will come to pass, it will be done for him. Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.”
Could you imagine walking with Jesus and seeing the fig tree completely withered away within 24 hours? The disciples had seen Jesus do many things through the power of His Father. He had seen Jesus walk on water, they watched and participated as he healed people, they watched and participated as he cast out demons. They were by his side as he spoke and taught the people with authority unlike that of anyone they had ever heard before, yet they were still learning from Jesus as they were walking with Him during His final week in his earthly vessel. There was so much for the disciples to learn that they could not possibly have learned everything from Jesus during their time that they had with him, even though they barely left his side during the last three years. The same goes for us today. Jesus is always teaching us. He is always molding us into the people that we were meant to be through the Holy Spirit, but just like His disciples we have to be ready to hear with ears that understand what we are being told.
We need to know the Word, both the Old and New Testament and stand strong in it. We need to not be swayed by society and its ever changing policies and interpretations for the Word of God is never changing. It is the same today as it was in the beginning. All that it took to strip unfettered access and communion with God from Adam and Eve was one simple word of doubt from the serpent; “did God really say…” (Gen. 3:1). When Jesus spent forty days in the wilderness being tempted by Satan He was being tempted through a manipulation of the word, but Jesus knew the Word in his head and in his heart; it was through the word that Jesus fought of Satan during his tempting of Him and we must do the same. We must learn the Word and know it not only in our heads, but in our hearts. It is only then that we will truly understand where the authority that we have comes from and the power that we have through the authority that we have received.
And they came again to Jerusalem. And as he was walking in the temple, the chief priests and the scribes and the elders came to him, and they said to him, “By what authority are you doing these things, or who gave you this authority to do them?” Jesus said to them, “I will ask you one question; answer me, and I will tell you by what authority I do these things. Was the baptism of John from heaven or from man? Answer me.” And they discussed it with one another, saying, “If we say, ‘From heaven,’ he will say, ‘Why then did you not believe him?’ But shall we say, ‘From man’?”-they were afraid of the people, for they all held that John really was a prophet. So they answered Jesus, “We do not know.” And Jesus said to them, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things.”
Children of Satan do not understand where we get our authority because it is different from what they know. They receive power through their own strength, some use it for good, while others use it to do harm, but it is not true power. True power is humble, it does not boast, it is honoring to others, there is no envy in it, it rejoices in truth, it always protects, trusts, and hopes, it always perseveres (1 Cor. 13:4-7). True power is love. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (Jn. 3:16).
Have you received true power? Do you know where your authority comes from? As we remember this week the final days of Jesus’ earthly ministry we are reminded of the love that our Father has for us that He would give us life through Jesus. That He would cleanse us through Jesus. That He would give us power through the blood of Jesus. We have no power, no authority, no hope without Jesus. So rejoice today as your remember all that you have received because you have a Father that loves you so much that He gave, in love, His only Son so that you could have life eternal.