PRINCIPLES OF SPIRITUAL AUTHORITY
By Waldo Castro
(Translated by Joyce Schmedel)
A WORD OF WELCOME
Through these pages, we seek together new things that will help us to walk in thepurpose of God for our lives. As a pastor, I have felt deeply the burden to affirm eachbrother in the faith so that he will be fortified, reach maturity, and arrive at a fullfruitfulness conforming to the expressed will of God in His Word.
In the studies of the Leadership School, we will be instructing about the way in whichGod desires to mold us to conform to His dream, to those that have surrendered themselvesto His hands. The time in which we live demands exemplary leaders, forged in the Word ofGod, with integrity, anointing, and character to affect the world.
These lessons about the principles of Spiritual Authority are very important for thelife of the believer. If you achieve to understand them perfectly and put them to work inyour life, you are going to produce abundant fruit that will last for eternity. The plansand the projects that God has designed, will be completed without any difficulty. Onapplying these lessons to your life, it will bring you protection, direction, andprovision for you and for your ministry and it will avoid falling into the traps of thedevil.
In my pastoral experience I have understood the demand and priority of God for theformation of faithful disciples that in His time are in charge of forming others.For that, it is very important to learn what the Lord wants to teach us in these lessonsabout Spiritual Authority to develop in an agreeable way, outside of all rebellion.
There is nothing more important, beautiful, and gratifying that to be in the center ofthe will of God, serving Him with joy in an agreeable way. God has put His dream in ourhearts, and it is to manifest His lordship in our city, in our state, and in our nation,bringing His powerful message and sharing the riches of His grace, that He has shedabundantly by means of us.
It is our prayer that this course will be a key of blessing for your life. Go forward!Reach out for the dream of God for your and travel together the course that He has showedus.
I extend to you a cordial welcome to these studies, and my heart and desire is that yoube abundantly prosperous.
In Christ Jesus,
Your friend and servant, Waldo Castro F., pastor.
Tepic, Nayarit, Mexico July 2004
THE AUTHORITY OF GOD
When God created the universe, he established a principle to govern it: the principleof authority. God himself was the maximum authority. Under God, there were the arch angelsand under the arch angels there were many other angels. When man was created, man himselfalso remained under that authority.
Authority implies the right to govern and the right to be obeyed. All the authoritybelongs to God because He is the Creator of all things. The hosts of heaven worshipsaying:
“Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hastcreated all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.” (Rev 4:11)
THE REBELLION OF THE ANGELS
Among the angels that God created was the arch angel Lucifer. He was the chief of allthe angels. He was the most beautiful, the most powerful, and the angel more wise that Godever created. But one moment came in which this powerful angel rebelled against hisCreator. He was not happy with being the principal of all the angels. He wanted to occupythe place of God and said in his heart:
“For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, Iwill exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of thecongregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of theclouds; I will be like the most High.” Isaiah 14:13,14 (underlinedemphasis personally added)
The rebellion of Lucifer was against the authority of God. He wanted to occupy theplace of God. As a result of his rebellion, he came to be Satan, the enemy of God and theenemy of man. A third of the angels of heaven followed Satan in his rebellion against God.These fallen angels are called “demons” or “evil spirits”.
Satan, together with the fallen angels formed an opposing kingdom to God and His kingdom.From that time there have been two kingdoms in the universe, the kingdom of God and thekingdom of Satan.
Before the rebellion, all creatures lived under the principle of obedience to theauthority of God. But Satan introduced another principle: the principle of rebellion.Rebellion is an attitude of the heart toward God that says, “I will do what Iwant to do. I will not obey you.”
THE REBELLION OF MAN
God created the first man, Adam, and put him in the garden of Eden. Then God created awife for Adam and this he called, Eve. God decided that Eve would be subject to Adam andAdam would be subject to God Himself. Satan desired to introduce his spirit of rebellionin man, but he did not approach Adam first. Instead, he directed himself to Eve andinduced her to disobey God by eating the forbidden fruit. When Adam knew what Eve haddone, he took also the forbidden fruit and ate. The Bible says that Eve was deceived butAdam was not. He chose to disobey God. Adam followed Satan in his rebellion against God.He said in his heart, “I will do what I want to do.”
Through the rebellion of Adam, sin entered the world. Adam transmitted his rebelliousnature to his children and to the world. From there forward, rebellion was a principle inthe heart of man. The Bible tells us, “ we have turned every one to hisown way ”. (Isa 53:6). Because of this, the Bible refers to unbelieversas “sons of disobedience”.
After the flood, God established laws and instituted human government. He gave toman the authority to exercise His laws. God did this for the protection of humanity. Thepeople were so sinful and rebellious that if it had not been for some form of government,there would have been to control evil. It was God who instituted capital punishment. Hewanted man to understand the gravity of taking the life of another person. God said toNoah, ” Whoso sheddeth man’s blood, by man shall his blood be shed: for in theimage of God made he man.” (Gen 9:6)
THE FAILURE OF ISRAEL
Much later God chose Abraham to be the father of a race that is called “thepeople of God”. God wanter a people that was obedient to Him in the midst of therebellion of a race of humans.
Abraham is known for his great faith, but he was also a man that obeyed the authority ofGod. God said of Abraham, “1For I know him, that he will command hischildren and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD,,,” (Gen18:19).
The descendants of Abraham form the nation of Israel, the chosen people of God. Thepurpose of God was that His people were to be obedient to Him and would establish Hisauthority in the earth. God wanted that through the nation of Israel, all the people ofthe earth would come to know Him.
But the people of Israel were disobedient and rebellious. God had to punish them manytimes. Finally, God permitted His nation to be destroyed, due to their continualdisobedience. Those that did not die were taken as slaves and dispersed through all theworld.
THE OBEDIENCE OF THE SON
God created the angels and many of them rebelled against Him. He created man and manrebelled against Him. He chose the nation of Israel so that they would be His People, butthe people of Israel rebelled against Him.
Then in the fullness of time, God sent His Son to the world. We know that the Lord Jesuscame to die for our sins, but alto He came to re-establish the principle of obedience.Jesus said, ” For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but thewill of him that sent me.” (John 6:38). Jesus Christ is God. Before coming tothe earth, he shared the same glory and authority of the Father. But when he came to theearth, he abandoned the position of glory. He humbled himself, making himself man.
The Bible says, ” Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery tobe equal with God:
But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was madein the likeness of men.” (Phil 2:6-7)
What kind of man was Jesus? He was a man totally obedient to God. He did not obey Godonly one time. Neither did He resist the authority of God at any one time while He washere on the earth. The standard of His life was obedience.
Jesus said, “ for I do always those things that please him.” (John8:29)
In the garden of Gethsemane, when the Lord Jesus meditated on bearing our sins on thecross. He cried, “ O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass fromme: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.” (Mat 26:39). Now that itwas the will of God that Jesus would die on the cross for our sins, He voluntarily obeyedHis Father. Never has there been a success so marvelous in the universe as the Son of Godbeing obedient unto death. The Bible says, ” And being found in fashion as aman, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of thecross.” (Phil 2:8)
Because Christ humbled himself and was obedient unto death, God the Father raised Himfrom the dead and exalted Him to the very throne of the universe. The Bible says, “WhereforeGod also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name.” (Phil2:9)
“By which God also highly exalted Him ” (Phil 2;8-9) To this man, JesusChrist, has been given all authority in Heaven and in the earth. He has become the Head ofa new race, the children of God. Such as He lived His life by the principle of obedience,in the same way, we must live ours by this same standard of obedience.
THERE ARE TWO PRINCIPLES IN THE WORLD
We have to recognize that today two principles exist in the world:
=1= The principle of rebellion, that is the principle of Satan.
=2= The principle of obedience, that is the principle of Christ. Every person goes throughlife guided by one or the other of these two principles.
=1= The Principle of rebellion: “I will do what I want.”
The basic principle of the world is rebellion. The Bible speaks of , “ thespirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience.” (Eph 2:2). Thisspirit is the same spirit of Satan and manifests itself in rebellion against God andagainst His Son. This attitude of the world is expressed in Psalms 2: “Thekings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD,and against his anointed, saying,
3 Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cordsfrom us.” (Psa 2:2-3)
This attitude of rebellion against God and His authority emanates from the heartexpressing itself in chaos and disorder. The Bible says that the world will go alongmaking itself more and more uncontrolled and to the extent as we draw nearer to the end ofthis age. Many people that profess to be Christians never have repented of their sins.They continue living being guided by the principle of rebellion and Christ will notreceive them.
The Lord Jesus Christ said: ” Not every one that saith unto me, Lord,Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Fatherwhich is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied inthy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that workiniquity.” (Mat 7:21-23)
=2= The Principle of Obedience:
The basic principle of the children of God is obedience. We as believers, must back upthe authority of God. Before accepting Christ, we were disobedient rebels, but when Godsaved us, He made it possible that we would live a new life under the principle ofobedience. The Lord Jesus Christ, “the obedient one” lives now in us.
The Bible says, ” Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove yourown selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you ?”(2Cor 13:5)
Because we have the Lord Jesus Christ living in us, we can obey God. But our obedienceis not automatic. It was not automatic in the life of the Lord Jesus Christ. He chose tolive life under the principle of obedience. We must CHOOSE to live our lives under thesame principle.
The Bible says, “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:” (Phil 2:5)
As a child of god, I must live my life under the principle of obedience.
=1= Authority implies the ________________of_______________________ and the rightof being ____________________.
All authority belongs to __________________because ___________________________________
=2= Satan introduced in this world the principle of __________________. Rebellion is anattitude of the
Heart toward God that says, _________________________________________________________.
=3= After the flood, God established _____________________ and instituted_________________.
It was ____________________who instituted capital punishment.
=4= We know that the Lord Jesus Christ came to die for our sins, but He came also tore-establish the________________________________________________________________________________.
What kind of man was Jesus? He was a man totally_______________________________________.
=5= The two principles that exist today in the world are:
- The principle of ________________________, that is the principle of __________________.
- The principle of ________________________, that is the principle of __________________.
=6= What have you learned in this lesson that will help you in your spiritual life?
THE AUTHORITY DELEGATED BY GOD
Key Verse: ” Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is nopower but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.” (Rom 13:1)
In the past lesson we saw that authority means the right to govern. All authoritybelongs to God because He is the Creator of all things. We learned that rebellion is thebasic principle of this world, while the basic principle of the children of God isobedience. Obedience to God and to submit yourself to their authority is the duty of everybeliever. In this lesson, we are going to learn a very important truth. To be totallyobedient to God, we must be obedient to authority delegated by Him.
WHAT IS A DELEGATED AUTHORITY?
A delegated authority is a person that receives and represents the authority of God. Allauthority belongs to God, but God has two ways of exercising His authority.
=1= Direct authority.
This means that God tells us directly through His Word or through the Holy Spirit whatHe desires that we do.
=2= Delegated authority.
This means that God chooses determined people that represent Him and that exercise Hisauthority.
God exercises His authority through (1) direct authority and by (2) delegatedauthority. God does not only guide us personally, but He also directs us through Hisdelegated authority. Parents, professors, police, chiefs, governors, etc. are delegatedauthorities.
Since a delegated authority is someone that represents the authority of God, thatperson must be obedient. To be irresponsible or disobedient to authority delegated by Godis the same as being irresponsible or disobedient to God Himself.
THE FOUR BASIC KINDS OF AUTHORITY
In the world in which we live, God has established four basic areas of authority:
=1= The Family
=2= The Government
=3= The Church
=4= The Workplace
We will consider each one of these four kinds of authority.
What God arranged for the family is that the father would be the head of the home underGod. The wife must be subject to her husband and the children subject to their parents.
The Bible says, “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as untothe Lord.” (Eph 5:22)
“Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto theLord. ” (Col 3:20)
In the family, God has put His authority in the parents, arranged so that the parentsrepresent the authority of God in the home. The correct thing is that they be obeyed. TheBible says, “Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.”(Eph 6:1)
The Authority of God in the Family
Many times young people want to change the Word of God for their convenience. Forexample, “iObey your parents: If you are right or if you think that you have reason,or if they are not disposed to what you want to do, or if they order you to do things in aloving and agreeable way ” But the youth that desire to please God will not usethese excuses. Instead, he will choose to obey his parents because it is the correct thingto do.
The father has been assigned by God as head of the family, but he must not be adictator. He must love his wife and his children and be an example to them. Also he isresponsible before God to educate his children in the ways of the Lord.
The Bible says, ” Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved thechurch, and gave himself for it;”(Eph 5:25)
“And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in thenurture and admonition of the Lord. ” (Eph 6:4)
THE ORDER OF AUTHORITY FOR THE FAMILY
Due to the sinful and rebellious nature of man, God established laws and humangovernment. God gave to men the authority to make laws to fulfill His laws. He did it forour protection and for our good. The civil authorities are the provision of God to limitevil to the end that we will be able to live in peace and tranquility and in all piety anddecorum. (1Tim 2;2)
Professors, police, judges, and local and federal representatives are all authoritiesdelegated by God, placed there to represent the authority of God. We must obey them.The Bible says, “Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there isno power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.” (Rom 13:1)
The authority of God in the nation
Christians must be citizens that obey the law. The student in school gives honor a Godwhen he obeys the rules of the establishment and demonstrates respect toward the teachers.When he does not do this, he dishonors God. As followers of Jesus Christ we must governour lives by the principle of obedience. The Bible says, “Submit yourselves to everyordinance of man for the Lord’s sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme.” (1Pet2:13)
Our Lord never participated in any rebellion. He taught the people to obey theauthorities of the government. When the Pharisees asked Jesus if they should pay taxes toCaesar, the Lord responded to them, ” They say unto him, Caesar’s.,” Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s; and unto God thethings that are God’s..” (Mat 22:21)
ORDER OF AUTHORITY IN THE GOVERNMENT
President of the Nation
Governor of the State
Mayor of the City
Jesus taught us to obey the authorities of the government.
The plan of God is that Christ be the Head of every church. Under the authority ofChrist they are the leaders designated by God, such as the pastors, deacons, and teachers.We must submit ourselves to the authorities of the church, delegated by God. The Biblesays, “Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watchfor your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not withgrief: for that is unprofitable for you.” (Heb 13:17).
ORDER OF AUTHORITY IN THE CHURCH
Those that have authority in the church must not impose themselves on the people ofGod but instead, serve them and be examples for them. With respect, the Bible says, “Feedthe flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, butwillingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; Neither as being lords over God’sheritage, but being ensamples to the flock.” (1Pet 5:2,3)
Our chief or boss represent the authority delegated by God in the workplace. We honorGod when we do our job in the best possible way because of the Lord. God is not pleasedwhen we do our job in a careless or partial way. He wants us to do it with all of ourheart.
The Bible says, “Servants, obey in all things your masters according to theflesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God.”(Col 3:22)
Here the word “servant” means simply an employee, a person that is employedby another. The Bible tells us that the employees must be subject to their bosses, notonly to those that are kind and genteel, but also to those with whom it is difficult toget along. The Bible says, “Servants, be subject to your masters with all fear;not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward.” (1Pet 2:18)
The authority of God in the workplace.
With relationship to our employment, God wants each believer to work as if he weredoing it for the Lord Jesus Christ. A youth had difficulty performing his job. Hisattitude was not good and the quality of his work was such that his boss was not happywith him. One day, the youth counselor of the church asked him this question, “Suppose that Jesus Christ himself was the manager of that business. Would that change thequality of your work? The answer, “After that, yes, I would do the best possible workall the time.” The counselor said to him, “Dont you know that God wantswith sincerity that you do your work as if unto the Lord Jesus Christ?
Then they read this verse, “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to theLord, and not unto men;
24 Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward ofthe inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.”(Col 3:23-24)
The Bible says that the chiefs or bosses also have responsibility before God. They mustbe good with those that work for them, recognizing that they have a Lord in heaven. TheBible says, ” And, ye masters, do the same things unto them, forbearingthreatening: knowing that your Master also is in heaven; neither is there respect ofpersons with him” (Eph 6:9)
THE ORDER OF AUTHORITY IN THE WORKPLACE
The boss or chief
The directors or managers
The employees or workers
QUESTIONS ABOUT AUTHORITY
Its possible that you have questions with respect to authority. We will try toanswer some of them.
“Supposedly, I think that my parents are wrong with respect to something. Should Istill obey them?”
The relationship between children and parents is so important in the eyes of God thatHe made it the theme of one of the Ten Commandments. The Bible says, ” Honourthy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy Godgiveth thee.” (Exo 20:12)
The word “honor” means to respect and obey. Still when you are indisagreement with your parents, you must not be disobedient or rebellious. The person thatdoes not honor his parents not only is breaking the commandment of God, but also isleaving the authority of God. The result of this is that his live can be cut short,because when we are under the authority of God, we are protected from the attacks ofSatan.
We can think about the authority of God as an umbrella that protects us from theattacks of Satan. Satan hates the people of God and wants to destroy them. But while weare under the “umbrella” of God, Satan cannot touch us without permission fromGod.
“Supposedly that someone who has authority over me makes a wrong decision. Will Ibe responsible?
The one that makes the decision is responsible for the results. If you are only obeyingthe person that has authority over you, God will not hold you responsible. Instead, hewill hold responsible the one that is at hand.
“Supposedly, he that is at hand is a bad person and I dont like him. In allways, must I obey him?”
Yes, you should submit yourself to him if he is an authority over you. We mustdistinguish well between the POSITION of a person and his PERSONALITY. For example policeare in a position of authority. He represents the authority of God in the fulfillment ofthe law. It can be that he does not have an agreeable personality but that is not anexcuse for you not to obey him. If he gives you a ticket of infraction for speedingexcessively, you cannot stop him and say, “you gave me this ticket yesterday but Itore it up because I did not like that policeman.”
“What do I do if someone with authority sends me to do something contrary to thecommandment of God?”
In such a situation you must not obey the person in authority. There is anillustration of this in the New Testament. Jesus sent His followers to preach the gospelto all the people. Later, the religious leaders ordered Pablo and the other disciples notto preach or teach more in the name of Jesus. But Peter could not fulfill this orderbecause it was contrary to the commandment of the Lord and said, “Then Peterand the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.”(Act 5:29)
Every time the order of man is in conflict with the commandments of God, you must obeyGod. For example, suppose that your boss commands you to do something fraudulent or to liewith respect to something. The doing of it would be to disobey the commandment of God.Therefore, you cannot obey him. Even in a situation like this, you must be respectful. Youmust have an humble attitude, even though you cannot obey. You would be able to saysmoothly, “Im sorry, but I cannot do this.”
Sometimes to refuse to obey the boss, if he demands that you do something bad, canmean that you will lose your employment. If that occurs, accept it as from the Lord,knowing that He is pleased with your attitude.
The Bible says, ” For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience towardGod endure grief, suffering wrongfully.” (1Pet 2:19)
ALL PERSONS IN AUTHORITY ARE DESIGNATED BY GOD
God wants us to understand that all people in authority have been designated andordained by Him. Because of that you must be obedient. We do not have a choice in thisrespect. We must obey those who have authority over us.
The Bible says, “Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For thereis no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. Whosoever thereforeresisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive tothemselves damnation.” (Rom 13:1-2)
Which of us would dare to disobey a direct command from the Lord? But de we give accountof the fact that to resist the delegated authority of God is to disobey the commandment ofGod? To obey the commandment of God, we must submit ourselves to His delegatedauthorities. The Lord Jesus himself is our example of what it means to submit toauthority. He submitted himself not only to the direct authority of God but also to hisdelegated authorities. He submitted himself to his parents, to the government authorities;he paid taxes, and obeyed the laws of the country. During all of his life, the Lord JesusChrist was subject to authority. He was never rebellious on any occasion. Truly he livedlife under the principle of obedience. To please God, the most important thing that we cando is to obey Him. To be totally obedient to the Lord we must obey His delegatedauthorities.
The Apostle Paul said, “Put them in mind to be subject to principalities andpowers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work,” (Tit 3:1)
To be completely obedient to God, we must obey the authorities delegated by God.
=1= A delegated authority is________________________________________________________________
Write four examples of people that are delegated authorities:
=2= Since a delegated authority is someone that represents the authority of god, hemust be _________________________________________. To be irresponsible or disobedient toan authority delegated by God is to be irresponsible or disobedient to___________________________.
=3= What God arranged for the family is that the father be_______________________________.
The wife must be __________________________________________ and the children to___________________________.
=4= We honor God in our work when we ______________________________________________.
God wants each believer to work as if__________________________________________________
=5= The most important thing that we must do to please God is______________________________
To be completely obedient to the Lord we must___________________________________________.
PRINCIPLES OF SPIRITUAL AUTHORITY
May you keep in mind the principle of spiritual authority.
May you understand the need to be under authority to be able to exercise it.
May you analyze the cases of discreet rebellion in the Bible.
To begin this theme, first we must clarify the following definition:
AUTHORITY: It is the delegation of power, command, or to magistrate. Tounderstand it better, we must go to the origin of the matter.
=I= AUTHORITY IN THE BEGINNING:
=A= GOD CREATED EVERYTHING (Gen 1:1)
In six days God created all known things, and on the seventh day he rested. He has theauthority over all creation because He is the Owner, the Creator of all, but besides thatHe delegated to man the possibility to administer His creation.
THE APPOINTED DAY OF CREATION (Gen 1)
Chapter 1: 3-5 Light
Chapter 1:6-8 The heavens
Chapter 1:9-13 He separated the water from the land and created the plants
Chapter 1:14-19 The sun, the moon, and the stars
Chapter 1:20-23 Large monsters and birds
Chapter 1:24-31 Land animals and man
Chapter 2:1-3 God rested (better said, he stopped His work)
=B= GOD DELEGATED AUTHORITY TO MAN (Gen 1:26)
God delivered His perfect creation to man.
God gave to man the power to govern all of it. (Gen 1:26-28).
=C= MAN LOST IT TO SIN (Gen 3:6)
Man preferred to know the difference between good and evil. The only thing that manuniquely knew until that moment was good: innocence. Because of that error, Satan becamethe owner of that which was mans (the creation). Man was dethroned of his authorityand benefits, by his own free will.
=D= JESUS CAME TO RESTORE OUR ORIGINAL CONDITION (Gen 3:15)
=1= Mat 18:18 gives us the authority to bind and to untie through prayer.
=2= Mar 11:24 teaches us to possess things by believing.
=3= Joh 14:12 promises us to do great things through us.
Resuming, we can say that God created everything, and then he put it in the hands ofhumans, but with one condition: to maintain faithfulness to God. Unfortunately our firstparents, Adam and Eve, disobeyed. Today by means of Christ we are restored.
=II= THE EXAMPLE OF JESUS: (Phi 2:5-11 Heb 5:7-9)
=A= Christ always obeyed the Father and the authorities, paid His taxes, and fulfilledthe orders of Caesar.
=B= Obedience requires a humble heart.
=C= Obedience to God must be without measure of consequences, until death. (Luk 22:42).
=D= Christ deposed himself voluntarily and come to obey. He had to prove his obedience ashuman and he learned it. (Heb 5:8)
=E= By means of suffering and tests, God teaches us to obey. At a specific time, the LordJesus Christ entered Capernaum and showed himself to a Roman Centurion. He was willing togo and heal the mans servant. The answer that Christ received from this soldiersurprised him.
“The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest comeunder my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed.
9 For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me:and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to myservant, Do this, and he doeth it.” (Mat 8:8-9)
Jesus said that even in Israel he had not found as much faith. This Centurion receivedthe understanding of fundamental principle of the Christian life: “delegatedauthority”.
=III= THE PRINCIPLE OF DELEGATED AUTHORITY: “TO HAVE AUTHORITY IT ISNECESSARY TO BE UNDER AUTHORITY, OR TO BE IN OBEDIENCE.”.
Why did Christ have an authority that was worthy to admire? Why did he heal the sickand cast out demons? The reason is that he lived always in perfect obedience: ” andbecame obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.” (Phil 2;8)
He could say, ” I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: andmy judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father whichhath sent me.”. (Joh 5:30)
“Jesus answered them, and said, My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me.“(Joh 7:16)
” And I know that his commandment is life everlasting: whatsoever I speaktherefore, even as the Father said unto me, so I speak.” (Joh 12:50)
” And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I doalways those things that please him.” (Joh 8:29)
He could finish his race saying, “I have glorified thee on the earth: I havefinished the work which thou gavest me to do.” (Joh 17:4)
What did He say about earthly authorities? Did Jesus uses his prerogative not torespect them? In no way, rather, he fulfilled all righteousness paying taxes and acceptingand including the pain of physical punishment for completing the will of the Father. He isour example of life under authority. Therefore, “He that saith he abideth inhim ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.” (1Joh 2:6)
=IV= CASES OF REBELLION:
=A= NADAB AND ABIHU (Lev 10:1-11)
–Rebellion is manifest when we operate without coordination with the rest of thebody. (v. 1).
–Rebellion is manifest when we approach God in the way it appears to us and not like Godhimself commands us. To disregard the commandments of God is rebellion. (v. 1)
–To present ourselves before God in rebellion, brings judgment to us. (v. 2); (1Cor11:27-29)
–God desires that we understand the form that He has established for doing things. (v.10).
=B= MIRIAM AND AARON (Num 12)
–The personal differences must not bring us to question authority, but to pray for them(v. 1)
–God delegates His authority supernaturally. For that we must not believe that we woulddo it better. (v. 2).
–God hears the murmuring about authority and puts on the brakes to stop evil. (v. 2).
–God himself comes to the defense of criticized authority. (v. 4).
–We must have fear to speak evil against authorities. (v. 8).
–Murmuring brings judgment. (v. 10).
=C= KORAH, DATHAN, AND ABIRAM (Num 16)
–For God all are equal and He puts the person he wants in the position of authority. (v.3).
–We must not see man, but we should look to the prevailing authority with which he hasbeen covered. (v. 3).
–God always comes to the defense of the one that he has designated. (v 5)
–Envy and non-conformity open the door to rebellion. (v. 9).
–To attack authority is to attack God Himself. (v. 11) (Rom 13:1-2).
–Rebellion closes communication and deforms reality. (v. 12-14).
–The spirit of rebellion is summarily contagious. (v. 19).
We have to be conscious that the Lord has delegated us as authorities to win thiscity, but we cannot exercise it effectively if we do not learn to be in obedience to ourauthorities. Jesus was our example with His life of obedience unto death. We must becareful of rebellion that infects our heart and makes us abort the plans of God for us.
=a= May you apply the principle of obedience to the three social areas of your life inthe world, in the family, and in the church.
=b= May you identify the principles of rebellion in yourselves and in others.
Man is a social being that develops continually relating himself with others. Becauseof that, it is important to be able to recognize the different authorities in the placeswhere we move. Our obedience to them is part of our duty as Christians. Without a doubt wehave a rebellious nature, but in the hands of the Holy Spirit, we will know to subjectourselves to the authorities and to rejoice in them.
=1= MEN MUST OBEY THE DELEGATED AUTHORITY:
The word, “delegated” means = offered to another, yielded, authorized,permitted.
This authority is representative or not being of its own but given by a superiorauthority. (For example, the policeman). Spiritual authority is a gift from God and someday we will give account of how we have used it.
=A= IN THE WORLD:
–Rom 13:1: All authority proceeds from God.
–1Pet 2:13-14: We must submit ourselves to human institutions.
–Exo 22:28 Even though the governors of the nations dont believe in God, we mustnot curse them.
–Rom 13:7: There are four symbols of subjection to earthly authority to know: Tribute,taxes, respect, and honor.
–2Pet 2;10: To speak evil of the authorizes is a carnal attitude.
–Col 3:22: Employees must be subject to their bosses.
Other passages to quote: Eph 6;5-7: 1Tim 6:1; Tit 2:9-10.
=B= IN THE FAMILY:
–Col 3:18-21: Wives, obey your husbands.
Husbands, love your wives.
Children, obey your parents.
Parents, encourage your children.
–Eph 5:22-24: Wives be subject to your own husbands.
–Eph 6:-13: Children to the parents.
=C= IN THE CHURCH:
–1The 5:12-13; 1Tim 5:17; Heb 13:17
To the pastors, the leadership, the teachers, etc.
To all the workers of the Lord.
All authority proceeds from God, so if we have this principle clearly in mind, it willbe easier to identify our beginnings of rebellion.
=II= OUR ATTITUDE BEFORE DELEGATED AUTHORITY:
=A= TO BE ATTENTIVE TO THE MANIFESTATIONS OF REBELLION:
The words: Mat 12:34 Jude 1:8-10 Eph 5:6 2Pet 2:10-12
Evil speaking means to say or speak something bad, etc.
Rationalizations: Rom 9:11-24 Man always justifies his rebellion in the same way asAdam justified his action passing the guilt to “the woman that you gave me” whichindirectly put the guilt on God that had given him the woman. Equally we must obey theauthorities when they make decisions that are not in agreement with our reasoning, exceptin the case when they request from us something that is contrary to the Word of God. Whocan argue with God? Surely no one would dare if he had a visible form, face to face, buthow quick we are to argue with the authorities in whom He delegated. We have freedom toexpress our opinions, but not to require that they be applied.
The thoughts: 2Cor 10:4-6 The thought makes itself strong to seek ajustification, a reason that appears to us valid and then is translated into words. Heremurmuring is all consuming and therefore it must be stopped in time, in the thinkingstage. The solution is to take captive our thoughts to the thought of Christ. That is tosay to enclose it in the thoughts of God.
“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest,whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely,whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise,THINK ON THESE THINGS.” (Phil 4:8) (Personal emphasis)
=B= BE CAREFUL IN MAKING DECISIONS: (Deu 13:3-10)
–Dont give ear to or listen to lies. (v. 3)
–Dont make concessions (v. 8)
–Dont give him your attention. That is to say dont enter into his games. (v.9)
–Stone him (with the Word) (v. 10)
=A= REQUIREMENTS TO EXERCISE SPIRITUAL AUTHORITY:
–You must know that all authority comes from God. (Rom 13:1)
–You must stay in constant communion with the Lord Jesus Christ. (Joh 5:19-20 Jos 1:8).
–You must believe God above all else that he provides for us security and prosperity.(2Chr 20:20).
–You must know the authority that has been delegated to you (2Cor 10:3-5).
Now we are sons of God, not only his creatures. We have weapons that have been given to us: prayer, fasting, the Word of God, holiness, communion, etc.
–You must deny yourself. You must not establish your own authority, but wait fornatural respect by the delegation and the support of God. He calls us to represent Hisauthority, not to substitute it.
=B= SUBJECT OURSELVES TO THE BODY: (Eph 1:18-23 1Cor 12:12-21).
It is natural and agreeable for the human body to obey the head. When some member does not act conforming to the directives of the brain it is because there is a physical disturbance.
=C= ENEMIES OF OUR SPIRITUAL AUTHORITY:
–Confusing the source of authority with the method or formula. (Act 8:18-22).
–A lack of purity of holiness. This makes our testimony not to be credible. It deprivesour word of authority.
–A lack of exercise. There is a law that says that all that is not used atrophies. Attimes complexes, timidity and other inner conflicts dont stop us from exercising theauthority received from God.
— Deficient diet: a lack of a devotional life.
–Doubt: It is a lack of confidence in God. It expresses facts of understanding andknowledge (it can be intellectual and moral).
–Rebellion: There are many cases more in the Bible of lost authority because of rebellionin the heart. (Gen 3:16-17; 9:20-27; Lev 10:1-2).
We must wait on God for us to obtain authority and to be careful not to lose it. In1Samuel 24 it tells us what occurred in En-gadi. David cut off the edge of the mantel ofKing Saul and it bothered his heart because his conscience was totally sensitive. Davidcould submit himself to authority. He did not try to help God so that he would do itinstead. Willingly he waited on Him. All those that have been the delegated authority byGod, must learn not to try to obtain authority for themselves. The institution that namesthe delegated authority of God is the church and its leaders. God himself respects theprophets and patriarchs that He put over His people.
=1=THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SUBMISSION AND OBEDIENCE:
Submission is a question of attitude, which obedience is a matter of conduct. Peterand John responded to the Jewish counsel, “But Peter and John answered and said untothem, Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God,judge ye.” (Acts 4:19). Their attitude was not rebellious since they submittedthemselves to those that were in authority. Obedience, however, cannot be absolute. It isnecessary to obey some authorities, but to others no, in matters that attain to Christianprinciples such as to believe in the Lord, preaching the gospel and others like it.Children can make suggestions to their parents, but they must not show a rebelliousattitude. Submission must be absolute. He who knows authority will be meek and tender. Hewill be perfectly submissive as much in his heart as in his attitude as in his words.There will not be signs of harshness or rebellion. How can we be submissive and obedientif we have so much of a tendency to be rebellious?
=A= TO HAVE THE SAME SPIRIT: TO BE ONE WITH THE LEADER:
In Numbers 11:16-17, the Bible tells us that the great anointing that was over Moses wassprinkled over the seventy and they prophesied. The Spirit fo the Lord came over Moses,and from Moses the Lord took the spirit that was in him and gave it to the seventy elders.If they were going to have the same thought, they would have to have the same spirit. Theywould have to think like Moses, act like Moses, discern like Moses. God had raised upMoses as the leader of the people and the seventy had been called to be separate toaccompany him. They identified themselves with him. They were faithful to their leader andto his ways. That same attitude made them have the same thought. They had submission, theyworked for the benefit of all and they helped Moses all the days of his life.
=B= BE CAREFUL OF A NEGATIVE SPIRIT, CONFORMISM AND MEDIOCRITY:
Now we read Numbers 13:26-33 and 14:1-2. Moses sent 12 spies to spy out the promised land.The twelve chosen were princes over their tribes. They knew the characteristics that theland had to have and also they knew that God had promised to give it to them. When theyarrived at the place, they gave an account that the land really was like that which theLord had described, but also they recognized that they were going to have to work hard tosecure it. In this way they preferred to place in the report some exceptions saying,”Nevertheless the people be strong that dwell in the land, and the cities arewalled all the people that we saw in it are men of a great stature. And there we sawthe giants, and we were in our own sight as grasshoppers,”
That negative spirit of unbelief spread rapidly over the rest of the group, with theexception of two of them, Caleb and Joshua that according to what the Bible says, they had”another attitude”. Caleb and Joshua had the same attitude of Moses and believedin the promise of God (Num 14:8-9). They could enjoy enjoy that promise. Joshua could stepon that promised ground and for his faithfulness to Moses, later he inherited theleadership of the people.
When we act with submission and obedience, our spirit is strengthened in the visionand the mission that corresponds to us. When we are one with our leader and we identifyourselves with his goals, with his form of work, with his life and heart, it is not goingto be difficult for us to work together with him. This must be my first objective: to beone with him. In the long run, God will reward our faithfulness and submission like he didwith Joshua.
Pray so all deception will be removed.
Pray for faith to believe in the delegation of that spiritual authority.
Pray so that, as a local church, we walk in the unity of God because in that way it willbe much easier to posses the land that God has given us.
REBELLION AND ITS CONSEQUENCES
The characteristics of a rebel
A study in the life of Saul based on 1Samuel 15
v. 3, 9 =1= Rebellion does not begin with open disobedience but withpartial disobedience.
v. 11 =2= The rebel does nothave a teachable attitude, neither is he subjected to God, and neither to his delegatedauthorities.
v. 3,9 =3= A rebelbelieves that he is more spiritual than his leaders.
v. 1,3,9. =4= A rebel will not take the vision ofhis leader and will not want to work in unity with the rest of the congregation. He willalways want to do things his way.
v. 7,8,9 =5= A rebel is not faithful in smallthings.
v. 7, 8, 9 =6= A rebel does not follow well the instructionsthat he receives. He always adds his own point of view.
v. 9 =7= A rebel is selfish or egotistical.
v. 9, 11 =8= A rebel take the easy way instead of forcing himself todo what is right.
v. 9 =9= A rebel is not exact, diligent, or worthy of trust.
v. 12, 15 =10= The believer frequently is “religious”because in this way pretends to be spiritual and in subjection.
v. 13 =11= A rebel is a verbal source of religious garbage.
v. 13, 20 =12= A rebel is dishonest and disloyal, especially with apastor.
v. 15, 21 =13= A rebel always passes the guilt to others.
v. 14 =14= A rebel always has many excuses to excuse his sins.
v. 17 =15= A rebel is frequently very insecure.
v. 17 =16= A rebel is prideful. He pretends a great religiosity.
v. 14, 15, 19, 20 =17= A rebel is not going to receive correction.
v. 19, 22 =18= A rebel does not appreciate counsel or teaching orinstruction from his leaders.
v. 20 =19= A rebel is self-deceived now that he is under a strongspirit of deception.
v. 20 =20= A rebel is always correct in his own eyes.
v. 21, 22 =21= A rebel has a lack of balance en his life and in hisdoctrine. Always he says, “God told me this.” Or “He told me that” andcontradicting himself in this way with what God supposedly says in previous sayings.
v. 22 =22= A rebel believes that his “ministry” is moreimportant than his personal life.
v. 21, 22 =23= A rebel believes that God is going to ignore his sinfor the “importance” of “his” own ministry.
v. 22 =24= A rebel does not obey.
v. 19, 23 =25= A rebel rejects the delegated authority as ordered byGod.
=26= He himself desires to be the authority.
v. 13, 15, 20, 23 =27= A rebel never is capable of finding hisministry. He wants to be the spiritual leader.
v. 23 =28= A rebel has opened his life to great demonic forces inthe same way as a witch or an idolater.
v. 23 =29= A rebel is going to fall into other great sins such assexual immorality or the occult.
v. 23 =30= A rebel is going to try to manipulate and control others.This is the spirit of occultism.
v. 26 =31= A rebel rejects the authority of the Bible (though notopenly) and substitutes this with his own reasoning.
v. 24, 30 =32= A rebel wants the approval and the acceptance of manmore than the approval of God.
v. 24, 30 =33= A rebel frequently is going to manifest a falserepentance or half a repentance.
v. 24, 30 =34= A rebel cannot understand the seriousness of sinbecause he is impelled to do his own will and falls into his own self-deception.
v. 30 =35= A rebel prefers to escape than to bow. He is used towalking from one congregation to another.
v. 7, 30 =36= A rebel begins with strength, but ends in weakness. Heis not constant. He does not have sufficient character to finish a task.
v. 11, 23, 26 =37= A rebel is going to lose the anointing, theblessing, direction, and the protection of God.
v. 30, 31 =38= A rebel frequently is glued to his deceit, even afterthe judgment of God falls on him.
v. 30 =39= A rebel lives only for himself, for his”reputation”, and for ministry. He is not living for God, even though in thisway he says that he is.
Be sincere with God and analyze well your life under His direction. Ifyou see that something of these characteristics is found in you, repent with all yourheart and ask for forgiveness. Permit God to change your attitude from the inside out.
ADDITIONAL CHARACTERISTICS OF A REBEL
=1= A rebel will attract other rebels. (Num 16:1-3) Equal spirits attract each other.The rebel “makes up to”others to win them to his cause (2Sam 15:2-6)
=2= A rebel is going to contaminate others. Rebelliongrows. (Num 16:19, 26 2Sam 15:12 1Cor 5:6-7).
=3= A rebel always finds fault in his leaders. Hestruggles against authority to raise himself in this same way (Num 16:3, 12, 14), eventhough he damages many. (Num 16:32, 33 2Sam 15:3,4)
=4= A rebel is going to use his tongue subtlety tospeak against his leaders. (Num 16:3, 12, 14 1Sam 15:3,4).
=5= A rebel goes to other extremes forming separategroups or “clubs of deeper life”. With frequency these are centered on prayer,intercession, liberation, or gifts of the Spririt. (Rom 16:17, 18). To pray against theleader established by God. He uses all of this to spiritually manipulate other rebelliousor ingenuous believers. (2Sam 15:1).