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Don’t Tell Me What to Do!!


The skinny on Authority. Are we drowning without it?  Authority – The power of or right to give orders, make decisions or give orders.  What is missing in the modern day church.  It could be authority.  In the course of an apathetic world that is spinning out of control, authority is just another symptom of a deep, deep problematic mindset.  In the core teachings of the Bible we as Christians have to bow to an authority to truly follow and be prepared for true, Holy Spirit filled living.  That authority is our Heavenly Father and He is a jealous God who wants our all and nothing less.  Ooops….That’s where our world’s beliefs and God’s Word clash big time as we see on a daily basis.  Remember, when we admit, believe, and confess and become a follower of Jesus there is something huge that happens and that huge thing is CONTROL!!   Control- we give it up when we accept Jesus and surrender our life to His will and way, and receive eternal life in heaven.  Some may think this sounds like a robotic type of life, but it isn’t at all.  We just surrender all our wants over to His way and truly give all our life over to His authority.  We are no longer free, but chained to his way of living.  It’s all His. Paul wrote the church in Ephesus about his position as a disciple and it is very telling for all  who call on the name of Jesus.  Ephesians 6:18 <span class="footnote" data-fn="#fen-NASB-29356g" data-link="[g]” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>[g]With all <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-29356AP" data-link="(AP)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>prayer and petition <span class="footnote" data-fn="#fen-NASB-29356h" data-link="[h]” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>[h]<span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-29356AQ" data-link="(AQ)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>pray at all times <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-29356AR" data-link="(AR)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>in the Spirit, and with this in view,<span class="footnote" data-fn="#fen-NASB-29356i" data-link="[i]” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>[i]<span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-29356AS" data-link="(AS)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>be on the alert with all <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-29356AT" data-link="(AT)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>perseverance and <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-29356AU" data-link="(AU)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>petition for all the saints, 19 and <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-29357AV" data-link="(AV)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>pray on my behalf, that utterance may be given to me <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-29357AW" data-link="(AW)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>in the opening of my mouth, to make known with <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-29357AX" data-link="(AX)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>boldness <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-29357AY" data-link="(AY)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-29358AZ" data-link="(AZ)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>ambassador <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-29358BA" data-link="(BA)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>in <span class="footnote" data-fn="#fen-NASB-29358j" data-link="[j]” style=”box-sizing: border-box; color: white; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>[j]chains; that <span class="footnote" data-fn="#fen-NASB-29358k" data-link="[k]” style=”box-sizing: border-box; color: white; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>[k]in proclaiming it I may speak <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-29358BB" data-link="(BB)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>boldly, <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-29358BC" data-link="(BC)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>as I ought to speak.  EEarlier Paul writes about the “Armor of God” and the importance of having it on and using it. Even earlier in the chapter Paul addresses that children should follow their parents instruction, Fathers should not provoke their children to anger and bring them up in the discipline of the Lord, and then he even says slaves be obedient to those who are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in the sincerity of your heart, as to Christ, not by way of eyeservice, as men-pleasers, but as slaves of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart.  Hmmm, the heart.  I guess that’s the same heart that Jesus is changing through our daily walk, and that heart is to become more like Jesus every day.  So authority is to be a way of life, and the one in authority is to be Christ-like in their implementation of that authority.  The one under the authority is to find their place in their submission and grow in that protection and direction.  But as with almost everything else, we are living in opposite world when it comes to authority.   If a man of God exerts his God given authority in most cases he will be asked “who do you think you are?”  If a husband tries to lead his wife and children as a person in authority, he will be burned at the stake,  Only if those who under his authority are not following the teachings of God’s word.  The authority thing is a problem at the core of everything we know and do.  Parents try to get their children to follow their instruction and after the third try give up.  This should not be.  Husbands try to protect and lead their families in the right directions and they are accused of being abusive and mean.   This should not be.  Pastors and church leaders are ignored when they say “you committed to this, now please do it.” This should not be.  BUT IT IS!!  In 2 Corinthians 10 Paul is writing to the church to address a problem that he has heard about.  The church there says he is bold in his writing and weak in his presentation when he is with them face to face.  He explains his attitude in being this way like this in 2 Cor. 10: Now <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-28973A" data-link="(A)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>I, Paul, myself <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-28973B" data-link="(B)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>urge you by the <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-28973C" data-link="(C)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>meekness and gentleness of Christ—I who <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-28973D" data-link="(D)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>am meek when face to face with you, but bold toward you when absent! I ask that <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-28974E" data-link="(E)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>when I am present I need not be bold with the confidence with which I propose to be courageous against <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-28974F" data-link="(F)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>some, who regard us as if we walked <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-28974G" data-link="(G)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>according to the flesh. For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-28975H" data-link="(H)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>according to the flesh, for the <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-28976I" data-link="(I)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-28976J" data-link="(J)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>for the destruction of fortresses. We are destroying speculations and every <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-28977K" data-link="(K)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-28977L" data-link="(L)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>obedience of Christ, and we are ready to punish all disobedience, whenever <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-28978M" data-link="(M)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>your obedience is complete.  Paul wanted them to just listen and do, don’t fight the messenger, which really means they are fighting the message, but obey and move on. I don’t think leaders want to lord over others, so they don’t follow through with their full authority.  We get more worried with people’s impressions of us being servant-leaders and that we are not tre harsh in our efforts to get followers to do the right thing, so we come across as too passive when we should be firm and forthright.  Like Paul, it is easy for me to write this blog and not follow through face to face with people who may or may not even heed my words of leadership, but it doesn’t lessen my authority because, whether I like it or not, that is given by God. Yes, by God!!  That’s scary isn’t it?  You should be on this side of it.  I relate to Paul’s problem of being meek face to face in verse 1, but I can’t relate to his standing strong and firm in telling those early Christians what to do and how to do it.  In today’s world no one is listening, so there is very little following.  And the following is temporary and based on having the perfect conditions for doing it….which is impossible.  Marriages would not fall apart if Biblical authority was followed by both people.  In Ephesians 5:23 Paul wrote  For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the Body. I always explain away this verse by saying,   Well, Christ gave himself up for the church, so I should give my life for my wife.  All of that is true, but the authority doesn’t lessen at all so it doesn’t get me off the hook, or my wife.  Biblical authority is just that Biblical authority.  It either is or it isn’t.  

So whatever authority you have been placed in that is Biblical authority should be exercised or you will lose it.  Then it is the choice of those who are to follow and those who are under that authority as to whether they will follow or not.  End of story.  In other words, someone stand up somewhere and do something because we are drowning here and there is no reason to be drowning.  The Lord has put everything in order and we are the ones putting the pieces in the wrong places, so the puzzle picture looks different than God intended.  How difficult will it be to assert this authority?  It will depend on the servant attitude and the Bible following attitude of those you are over.  And whoever you are under in authority.  Make this task easier by being more Godly in your approach to following.  All will go much better if you are living your life that way.

Hebrews 13:17 <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-30259AH" data-link="(AH)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>Obey your leaders and submit to them, for <span class="crossreference" data-cr="#cen-NASB-30259AI" data-link="(AI)” style=”box-sizing: border-box; font-size: 0.625em; line-height: 22px; position: relative; top: 0px; vertical-align: top;”>they keep watch over your souls as those who will give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with grief, for this would be unprofitable for you.

The Pilgrimage continues…

David Warren

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