Good Friday, which is observed by the Christians of the whole world, brings before us the picture of Jesus standing before the authorities. he was standing before the religious authorities of the Jews. He was placed before Herod, the king of Judea and in front of Pontius Pilate who was the Roman Governor of the province of Judea, which was under the rule of the Roman Emperor Tiberius.
How did Jesus behave with the authorities? What was his reaction to the political and religious powers? What is the concept of Jesus about any authority?
God given authority
Jesus always taught that authority -either it is temporal or religious - comes from above. According to him obedience to law was a duty. Power of any nature comes from God. He was always respecting the political and religious judges. Both authority and power go hand in hand.
During the trial before Pilate, Jesus defines about power and authority. Pilate tries to establish his authority over Jesus and Jesus explains that every authority comes from above. When Pilate asked if he tried to refuse speaking to him since he had power either to free him or to crucify him, Jesus replied that Pilate would have no power over Jesus if it were not given to him from above.
Even when Jesus was preaching and spreading the KIngdom of God, he never rose against authorities or governments. He did not make any political revolt, as expected by the Jews. The Jews were expecting that the Messiah would revolt against the rulers, topple governments and establish a kingdom of his own. But Jesus simply insisted that his kingdom was not of this world and if it were, the heavenly servants would have fought to prevent his arrest by the Jewish leaders.He stated clearly that his Kingdom was built purely on love and not on sword or military power.
He always showed an example of obedience to the governments and authorities
Jesus pointed out in many places that a power comes from God. When the authorities ask Jesus questions, he remains silent for most of them. But when they ask him a question in the name of God, he answers their questions. For example, when the high priest simply asked Jeus if he would not reply he remained silent. But when the high priest demanded or ordered him to reply as an oath, Jesus replied him affirmatively.
Jesus insists that duties towards government should be fulfilled
When the Jews tried to accuse Jesus that he is acting against the governments, he tells them one has to fulfill the duties towards governments. When the Pharisees tried to trap Jesus by asking him if it is right to pay tax to Caesar, Jesus told them to pay the due. He pointed out that what is due to God should be fulfilled and what is due to the government also should be executed.
St. Paul admonished the Romans about obedience to the authorities saying that everyone must submit to governing authorities because all authority comes from God, and those in positions of authority had been placed there by God.
Authority comes from above. It is the will of God that someone should be the authority. Jesus showed a great example that authorities should be recognized and respected.