Authority in the Family
life, we will encounter authority. We encounter it in the physical realm and the natural laws. You cannot change those
laws, you just accept that they're there and work with them.
If you are driving a car fast, and you slam on the brakes, everything unattached will fly forward. You can't stop that.
You just understand it happens. It's called the law of inertia. It's a law, God set it in place. If you step off that decking
there, what will happen is, you'll fall down - the law of gravity operates. So in the spirit world, there are laws as well;
and the Bible tells us that God has set some things in order. He says there are some authorities that God has
established. An authority is someone with a lawful right to act, because they're given responsibility. Authority and
responsibility always go hand in hand, so when God gives someone responsibility, He says: you've got the right to
act. If it's not your responsibility, you've got no right to act. If that's your house, you've got the authority to change the
colour of it; if it's not your house, you've got to leave it alone, you can't go painting. It's as simple as that. If that's your
car, you've got the authority to run it the way you like. If that's not your car, you keep your hands off it and leave it, it 's
not your right to do that.
So wherever you have responsibility, authority is closely attached. Authority is the legal, or la wful, right to be able to
act, or exert power, or to run something. So the Bible tells us there are higher authorities. There are some that are
different levels, they have a greater level of responsibility. You have lesser responsibility, lesser authority; greater
responsibility, greater authority; and the Bible tells us where the source of that is. The source of it is God, and it tells
us how we are to respond, whenever we encounter this. You're going to encounter it everywhere you go in life. You
go out on the roads, you'll encounter authority. You go into the tax department, you'll encounter authority. You get
your rates demand, you're encountering authority. It may not all be good in the way it's done, or run, or we may
disagree with how it operates, however the Bible says we're going to encounter it, and it's there to bring order into
society. We found when we looked last week, there were four authority structures God has set up, that affect us
directly. One is the authority of government. Government is given certain responsibilities, given certain authority. If it
goes beyond its responsibilities, it becomes oppressive.
We found also that God has set up the church. The church is given certain responsibilities, concerning the salvation
of souls, and exerting influence in the spirit dimension, and touching the hearts and lives of people; so God gives us
authority to do that job. The church is the only body of people that has authority over demons. Church is the only
body of people that can deal with spiritual forces and influences. The Bible tells us also that there is set up the family.
In the family there is a divine order, which we're looking at in this part of the series we're doing, and we found that in
the family there is a certain authority structure that God has set in place, all related to the responsibilities. Then finally
there is the individual; you have responsibility for your life. You can choose to spend a life serving God, you can
choose to spend a life serving the devil, you can choose to spend a life serving yourself. You have authority to do
God has given you responsibility for your life, therefore you have authority for your life as well. You can choose what
you do with it. You can misuse your life, you can use it well. You can invest your life so it serves God; you can invest
your life so you cause great havoc to the cause of godliness in the earth. You choose. You have authority because
you have responsibility - but everyone gives account one day, everyone, no exceptions. Romans 14 tells us: every
one of us, no one excepted, will one day give account of their life, and what they did, before the source of that
authority. So if you've been given a lot of authority, you'll be required to give more account. If you have less, then
you'll have less to give account for. It just works quite simply and quite straight forward. Now the Bible tells us: let
every soul; turn to someone and say: that means you, talking about you right now. Let every soul be subject to the
higher power; and then it says: for whoever resists the authority, resists what God has set in place.
Now you have two choices whenever you face an authority. You have a choice of resisting, or a choice of subjecting
yourself, it's as simple as that. So we've got the first one, resis ting. Whoever resists - that word is an interesting word
in the original language. It means like this: it means to put yourself in a position, where you are opposed to, or
against, that authority. So it says: if you put yourself in a position, where you are opposed to, or resisting, or standing
against, what God has set in place - you are opposing God, simple as that. Whoever resists the authority, resists
what God has set in place. Now of course, some authorities misuse and abuse their authority. You have to confront
them. Sometimes you have to withdraw from them, for your own safety. There are situations, and the Bible says that.
Jesus said: if they persecute you, flee to another city; so you don't have to stay. When you're being persecuted, you
can get out of it. Not only that, sometimes we need to set a strong boundary where there's oppressive leadership, in
order that we can be saved, or safe, from being hurt or wounded in some kind of way.
So we have to understand that God has got some safeguards around this area, but remember we're just trying to find
what the principle is, before we go looking at all the exceptions, and the misuses. So those who resist the authority
find themselves fighting against God; now why is it that people resist? Basically, it's one of usually three reasons: