14 Not until halfway through the festival did Jesus go up to the temple courts and begin to teach. 15 The Jews there were amazed and asked, “How did this man get such learning without having been taught?” 16 Jesus answered, “My teaching is not my own. It comes from the one who sent me. 17 Anyone who chooses to do the will of God will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own. 18 Whoever speaks on their own does so to gain personal glory, but he who seeks the glory of the one who sent him is a man of truth; there is nothing false about him.
Thoughts: Jesus shows his credentials as messiah not just because of his miracles, but also because of his teaching. He taught like a famous rabbi without having attended a famous rabbinic school. Jesus points out that He has God the Father's backing for His teaching, which enables Him to speak powerfully and wisely. Some of the best preachers in America are not those who have had extensive seminary training- think Dwight L. Moody, Billy Sunday, Schoffield, Billy Graham. Education teaches us many things- but sometimes limits our thinking.
Prayer: Lord, thank you that your wisdom is not limited to whom we expect. Your power surprises us in unexpected places and people.
John Calvin Abridged: Christ undertook the office of a teaceher in a time in which teaching had been limited by tradition and corruption. It was an astonishing proof of the power and grace of God that Christ, who had not been taught by any Master should teach so well. Yet He was distinguished by His knowledge of the Scriptures not by studying under a scholar. Jesus claimed to be taught by God.