Thursday, September 03, 2009

Authority (14) - Human

Jesus set his followers free by giving them authority over their own lives and empowering them by the Holy Spirit. He did not give his authority to the church leaders or elders. Nor did he give authority to human governments. He returned authority back to people and families, as it was in the beginning. Since Jesus has set us free, we must be careful about submitting to other authorities.

For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery (Gal 5:1).
Christians should not give their freedom to church leaders and pastors. They should submit to a wise elder, or group of elders, but they should remember that they are free to withdraw that submission at any time, if that leader loses the plot.

Christians should not submit to human political powers. We should put up with them, so we can get on with sharing the gospel and serving the kingdom, but we should never forget that they are usurpers. If they prevent us from serving Jesus, we will take back our submission, and take the consequence. Taking up the cross means that the worst that political powers can do is take our lives.

We may occasionally submit to human judges, but mostly we will choose to defamed and dispossessed, rather than stand on our rights. We will turn the other cheek and walk the second mile as Jesus did, but if we do decide to go to a judge we will submit to a wise local judge. Once the case is resolved, we will withdraw the submission and return to freedom.

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