Then Jesus said to them, “How is it that they say the Christ is the Son of David? David himself declares in the Book of Psalms: ‘The Lord said to my Lord: Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet.’ David calls him ‘Lord.’ How then can he be his son?” (Luke 20:41–44, NIV84)
Jesus had spent the last week of His life teaching in the Temple. He had buffeted every attempt of the religious leaders to trip Him up. He had clearly proclaimed the truth of God’s Word to everyone who might listen. And now, He addressed the most important question of the week. The question on everyone’s mind, the one they were afraid to ask, was “Jesus, are you the Christ (Messiah)?” Jesus addressed the question from a completely different angle. Rather than address whether He was the Messiah, He wanted to know whether their perception of the Messiah was biblically correct. Too many of Jesus’ contemporaries were looking for a political ruler and king who would kick the Romans out of their country.
Jesus challenged their perception by referring to David’s words in the Psalms. David referred to the Messiah as his offspring but also as his Lord. David knew that the Messiah was to be no ordinary man. He knew that the Messiah was going to be sent from God, to be not just a political leader but a spiritual Savior. In our text for today, Jesus was asking the people of His day, “Why don’t you view the Messiah the same way David did?” Before they could answer the question whether Jesus was the Messiah, they needed to have a proper understanding of who the Messiah is.
The same is true for you and me. We, too, have a tendency to redefine and change perceptions of things that are in God’s domain. It is vital that we train our hearts and minds to see the things of God the way they are intended. The truths about Jesus’ life and teachings are not up for grabs or for re-interpretation. In most of these things God has an intended meaning, and our task is to discover that meaning and apply it to our lives. We need to make sure we don’t miss the boat, like Jesus’ contemporaries, because we change the intended meaning of what God is saying in His word.
As we continue to firmly root ourselves in God’s Word, may it always be our master.