Matthew 21:23-25 KJV “By what authority doest thou these things?”
The synagogue leaders asked Jesus this question. By whose authority is the question for all of us to face. Who are we to lead the church? Who are we to offer intercessory prayers for others? Jesus’s response to this was his own question: “The baptism of John, whence was it? from heaven, or of men?” Is baptism something we do to bless others, or is it a blessing from God?
When we are baptized, we devote our life to live up to God’s principles, not our own. By taking this vow seriously, we are truly enabled by God to do work in His name. the priests and ministers who perform the baptism, just as John the Baptist, are bringing us closer to the will of God. This is an important element in the life of a person of faith. By devoting our lives to the will of God, we are worthy of passing on the gifts and grace of God to others.
As a personal prayer minister, I am never calmer or more filled with the presence of God within me that I am when praying with others. There are times when I meet someone later whom I prayed with, I am thanked for the spirituality of the words that I said and am asked how I do this. My answer is that I don’t know. The words I use are not my words; they are words passing though my lips from God.
I urge all of my friends to try this. You will find that if you truly concentrate on what your prayer partner requests, the prayers you offer are not your words. When I first realized this, I was awed by the presence of God in all our lives. I am still not comfortable with the idea that I can make a difference in another person’s life. However, I know that when we pray together, God is with us, not only listening, but taking an active role in our prayers. When we pray, God is talking to us. So, when asked by what authority we pray, the answer is God’s authority.