Friday, August 08, 2008

All 22 of us at Casa Alianza in Guayaquil, Ecuador at the end of our journey

I learned a good deal more about authority this summer. God's authority structure is set up for our "direction and protection" a friend of mine frequently teaches.

He is right. When the Lord raises up authority in our lives and we rebel against it, we are headed for trouble. Our rebellion is sometimes significant and other times quiet and internal. Regardless, it is something that will end in difficulty if we do not yield.

The Word of God teaches us that "all authority" is God's authority (Romans 13). It goes on to tell us that when we rebel against authority we are rebelling against God.

This is a teaching we do not like. It is difficult for us to accept that those who have evil intent or do not regard the things of God as important as authorities in our lives. We struggle to believe that God would set them over us for any reason.

It is far too easy to rebel against those who are not godly.

We find ourselves believing we are being Christlike when we work against the ungodly people in our lives who have been set over us.

According to Scripture, this simply is not true. We must yield to that authority. We can appeal to them when we are in disagreement, but working against is not pleasing to the Lord.

I work with many students who have parents that are unbelievers and this struggle routinely plays out in their lives. It is a very difficult thing for them. Giving counsel and telling them they still need to submit is unpopular advice.

However, time after time I have seen their parents turn around and follow the heart of God when their child who didn't agree with their parent, submitted to them.

With all of the corruption in our world, this idea seems ridiculous. However, it remains true. When we follow the authority set over us we find His favor. Certainly, when that authority is all about evil, there are steps we need to take to appeal, and seek His intervention. Blatant disregard or disrespect for them will do more harm to the Lord and His ways than submission.

We can all devise scenarios where this truth seems completely dated and foolish. Following the heart of our Savior never is. Following what His Word teaches us, will bring Him glory...even when we cannot see how.

I can assure you that the Name of Jesus and the human authority He raises on the mission field or anywhere else, must be submitted to by the enemy. We just are not always sure what that means.

In the book of Numbers, Moses sister and brother get weary of Moses being "God's chosen one." They decide they should be in charge and try to usurp control. It ends badly for them until they resubmit to God.

A few chapters later, other Israelites do likewise. They are destroyed by the earth swallowing them or by plagues. Moses authority remains constant. God remains in control.

When God puts His authority in us and we do not stand up and lead as He would have us to, people suffer.

When God's authority is on those we do not like and we fail to follow, we suffer and bring those who agree with us, down.

Following God, is following His authority.

Philippians says of Jesus, ..."he humbled himself and became obedient in death- even death on a cross! Therefore, God exalted Him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father."

Every living being will bow down to Him! Every living being will confess that He is Lord, whether He is Lord of their lives or not!

He wins!

Ours is to follow Him in obedience. We can do this.



At 4:53 PM, Blogger Hopeful Pediatric Oncology Nurse said...

Agreed, Agreed... awesome message today, Brent. I learn more everyday... Thank you. May God be with you, Bless you in your work, your life, and your family. Your daughter Lauren has a beautiful voice (myspace). I'm rereading "I Would Die For You". It always amazes me what I can find in a book, nonetheless about a boy who was no older than I am right now, and did more than I could do in my own lifetime. Thank you for writing the book. Greatly appreciated. Love, Leslie


Post a Comment

<< Home