Today's Bible Study, Authored by Arthur Cincotti. 01/23/2022
Listen to our Bible Study Discussion at: The Issue of Authority Podcast
An Issue of Authority
“For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft,
And stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry.” I Sam, 15:23
The three irrefutable qualities of God are:
He is omnipresent; everywhere at the same time.
He is omnipotent; all powerful, no force can resist.
He is omniscient; all knowing.
Ps. 94:10, “He knows everything – doesn’t He also know what you are doing?” NLT
I Jn. 3:20, “For if our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things,”
Mat. 10:29, “But not a single sparrow can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it.” NLT
Let’s just agree that He knows everything.
It’s not enough to say that He knows all things, but under the umbrella of knowing all things, He is actually right about all things.
Deut. 32:4, “A God of truth and without injustice; Righteous and upright is He.”
Gen. 18:25, “Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?”
This is important to settle in our hearts and understanding before we are tempted to question and/or shake our fist at God.
When God responds to Job (I was tempted to say, “finally responds”) He lists over thirty questions that Job was speechless to answer.
Some titles that help to establish God’s authority include: King, Judge, Father, Lord, Almighty (El Shaddai)
It is easy to comprehend that God is righteous, and not to be resisted, or questioned, but it can be difficult to distinguish the people that God has placed in authority over us, especially in this cultural moment.
Rom. 13:1 says, “there is no authority except from God”
The dynamics of earthly authority is often times a type, or pattern directing us how we should walk in obedience to God.
I Co. 15:46 reminds us, “the spiritual is not first, but the natural, and afterward the spiritual.”
At the time when Paul wrote Romans 13, Nero was emperor of Rome.
David understood this regarding his relationship with Saul.
In I Sam. 24:10, David says to Saul, “Some of my men told me to kill you, but I spared you. For I said, ‘I will never harm the king – he is the LORD’S anointed one.”’
As Americans, steeped in our cultural experiment of Democracy (more accurately Constitutional Republic) it is difficult for us to understand monarchies, and absolute authority.
There are three types of government.
1) Theonomy; subject to God
2) Heteronomy; subject to a law or standard external to self (other)
3) Autonomy; make it up as you go along Jg. 21:25 (Auto = self)
The word “authority” is used 32 times in the gospels.
It is the Greek word “exousia” and can be translated power.
Jesus was praised for His authority and challenged for His authority, but He always delegated His authority to the Father. See Jn 5:19
Jesus praised the centurian, in Mat. 8 because he understood authority.
He has given us (the church) a sphere of authority; see Tit 2:15
And there is authority within the church; see I Th. 2:6; Heb. 13:17 NASB
Our awkward instruction is to submit to authority, until or unless it violates righteousness. This is difficult for us, because of the afore mentioned culture, and mostly because of our fallen nature.
We must recognize this tendency in us to resist authority, and always be circumspect and prayerful when we feel it welling up!!
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