Monday, August 24, 2009

Authority (4) - Imposed

Imposed Authority uses force and coercion. It is usually enforced with physical power. The greater the physical power, the greater the authority that can be imposed. Caesar Augustus gained his authority when he had won a war. His military victories gave him authority to impose his will on the entire Roman Empire. The centurion could impose his authority because the physical power of Rome was behind him. Any soldier who disobeyed him would be severely punished.

The devil uses Imposes Authority. He forces those who belong to him to obey his will. He uses his spiritual power to maintain his control.

Strangely enough, the devil’s authority began as Voluntary Authority. He gained his authority on earth when Adam and Eve submitted to him. They freely submitted to him, because they expected to benefit from his promises. When they submitted to the devil, he immediately twisted his promise and changed it into Imposed Authority. Adam and Eve freely submitted, but they became slaves to sin and . They lost the ability to opt out, because he can impose his authority.

The devil continues to look for Voluntary Authority to steal. He is still deceiving people into submitting to him. Once he gains authority in their lives, he immediately distorts it and transforms it into Imposed Authority.

The modern state uses Imposed Authority. When Parliaments and congresses pass laws, all citizens must obey, even if they do not like them. Ministers and bureaucrats can issue regulations and citizens must comply with them, even if they will be disadvantaged.

The state is backed by a large army and police force. If people rebel against the authority of the state power, military and police power can be used against them. There is no escape from the state, as people who refuse to recognise its authority can be forced to yield.

Democracy does not change the nature of political authority. The political leaders of democratic systems usually claim there is a social contract between them and the people governed, but this is just to give an illusion of Voluntary Authority. The reality is that voters give their political leaders a blank cheque. They cannot opt out, so they are not free. All political power is Imposed Authority backed by military and police force.

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