“No one ever spoke the way this man does.” John 7:46
These words did not come from the lips of
Jesus’ enthusiastic disciples
His admiring followers
impressed church leaders.
These words were uttered by the temple police, who had been sent out by the Pharisees to shut Jesus up and bring Him in so the priests could give Him stern warnings against riling up the crowd of know-nothings and inciting a Messiah-fever among the rabble.
These armed guards had authority directly from the high priest to maintain law and order on the temple grounds. They were responsible to quash any renegade preaching with force. As they patrolled the holy house of prayer, they reminded all the worshipers to behave in church.
While on the beat, they stopped to listen to Jesus.
They couldn’t tear themselves away.
They heard words of life.
They couldn’t arrest Him.
The guards had to explain to their supervisors why they failed in their mission.
They could have said,
“He slipped away into the crowd,”
“We couldn’t identify the culprit,”
“We’ll get him next time.”
Instead of cracking down on the rouge teacher, they were enthralled by His words. Jesus wasn’t a threat in their eyes. In fact, they liked what He was saying. We don’t know what it cost those temple policemen to come back to the office empty-handed, but we do know they got a dressing down from the Pharisees.
“Are you carried away like the rest of the rabble?
You don’t see any of us leaders believing in him, do you?”
No. No, they didn’t.
The words of Jesus deserve our utmost attention.
It’s vital to spend time reading and studying what He had to say.
There are many, many gifted writers and engaging teachers out there,
but no one speaks like this man.