Text: Heb. 13:17-19; 22-25
Today, In churches all over the world we see that respecting church authorities is lacking behind. Many have allegedly challenged ministers of God; others believe is on the contrary. Fortunately both of these beliefs are seen in scriptures but we are yet to agree on what exactly is God saying through the scriptures concerning this issue. I hope this lesson will help bring God’s verdict through the scriptures plain to each of us in Jesus name. Amen.
Definition of Terms:
Respect: an attitude of consideration of high regard.
Church: a Christian community.
Authority: person in charge
It must be understood that even though we are all called to be glorified (Rom 8:28-30), we are not called to occupy certain office in the church. Every Christian should have his or her place in the church; nevertheless God has separated some offices to be in charge of the spiritual and administrative work of the church. (1 Cor. 12: 28-30, Eph. 4:11, Act 6:1-5, Act 20:17). God instituted these offices. It is clear that churches have people in charge (Authority) and it is expected that other members of the church should respect them. Not just for who they are but for the authority that is place on them (Act 8:27; 26:12). No authority in by mistake, every authority is divinely planned. (Ps 62:11)
Respecting Church Authorities (Heb 13:17-19; 22-25).
It is expected of every Christian to consider people in authority with high regard. But how to do these was explain in Heb 13:17. Obey and submit. Obedience means going along with direction or commands whereas submission is a sweet spirit of cooperation that stem from trust. How to respect is shown through obedience and submission.
Why should we Respect Church Authorities?
- Because God instituted all authority Ps 62:11
- Because they watch over your soul. Heb 13:17
- So that they will watch over your soul with Joy and not in grief. Heb 13:17
- So that they will feed you. Act 20:28
- Because if cause them grief you cause yourself grief. Heb 13:17, Gal. 6:7-8
Dangers to disrespecting Church Authority
- Sickness, disgrace to your own anointing Num 12:1-12
- Bareness 2 Sam 6:20-23
Thing to note:
- Ministers Authority is not in absolute authority. Every leader is accountable to God. Act 14:23
- Abusive leaders should be removed from offices. Removed not gossiped around by members and can only be removed by the appropriate person 1 Tim. 5:19-21
- You are not to follow Leaders blindly. Act 17:11, 1 Cor. 2:15
- Leader should be prayed for. Rom. 15:30-31, Eph 6:19, Col. 4:3-4, 1 Thess. 5:25, 2 Thess. 3:1.