by Terry Wane Benton
On one most revealing occasion, some soldiers were sent to capture Jesus and came back empty-handed exclaiming, “No man ever spoke like this man” (John 7:46).
What seems most impressive to me about the whole episode of Jesus is that He was feared, not because He might be physically dangerous to others but because His influence was so strong, His words so endearing, and His sanity so sane and full of meaning. If Jesus had been a mere man, He would not have gained a single consideration for being sane, nor would He have been thought criminal material for locking away or execution. You don't execute the insane, you chain them away where they won't hurt themselves or others.
He was executed for basically claiming to be God and having credibility to go with the claim. With an insane man, we normally respond with sympathy, and no traction comes with a claim for deity as that is too obviously not what is going on before us in this poor, confused, and irrational man! We help such people so they will not hurt themselves as they clearly have mental issues. No man can gain credibility with a claim to be God and be able to raise the dead and give eternal life. You would have to show unusual evidence to gain any traction with that claim. I cannot conceive of myself gaining any traction with such a claim if I went into various communities claiming that I am God come in human flesh and that all who believe in me will be raised from the dead and given eternal life. I would need something far more convincing than just my words for making such a claim! Yet, this Man has always had and maintained credibility and traction with His claims! There had to be something about Jesus that was far different than normal, sane men, that gave Him that credibility!
- Should have aroused PITY! Shouldn’t they?
- Should have taken away a man’s credibility!
- Who else could say what He said?
- Who else would be thought credible?
We should make note that men have often made claims about God talking to them or revealing something to them, but how many can you think of that claimed to be God, the Great I AM, and managed to gain unending credibility? Only one! The unique nature of Jesus stands out, and most impressive of all to me is that every needed factor to make such a man credible just so happened to surround only this one man. He would need miracles (check), a vouching for in the Law of Moses and the Prophets (check), an empty tomb (check), a missing body (check), and fearless eyewitnesses (check). Without these items, he would have no traction at all in claiming to be God in the flesh. No one can listen to His words and think anything but pure words of sanity and hope with rightful authority to say them like no other man could! No man could speak like He is God and have the credibility that Jesus still has unless He backed up His words with divine proof. Jesus had all the proof needed! His words are the words of deity, divine truth that we can count on!