God-Blessed, God-Darned Authority

Are we referring to Jesus or a person with less sin than the rest of us? Do we mean that “God appointed” the person to.. whatever position the person holds? Was this person appointed by the Senate? Did the denomination regional superintendent rotate him in for two months? I didn’t know that the Senate was God.. maybe God is a denominational regional superintendent. He must be, because everyone appointed that way is “appointed by God.”

When we treat a pastor or a president as if he has some halo of invisible glory that illumines his brow, we may get upset upon discovering that he doesn’t walk on water. He falls from grace and scandal faces public scorn.. we actually think God is judging him? ..right.

It’s one thing to say, “I’m in charge, like it or leave it. Confront me if you disagree, but live with my answer.” It’s a whole other story to fanfare every other sentence with, “Our Godly Authority.. bla bla bla..” mantra. In North Korea they say, “Our Dear Leader.. bla bla bla..” That has a nicer ring to it.

Should we respect the leader of an organization? Um.. YES. Otherwise get out! Make up your mind whether you want to do what the group is doing or not. Don’t join, then do your own thing. Did “God orchestrate” who’s in charge? Maybe, just like “God orchestrates” which members, join, stay, and leave—and you don’t need the leader’s permission for having a reason to leave. You are commanded to be respectful no matter what your reason—or position—is.

If you disagree with the pastor, you should confront him—especially if you care about him. In agreeing with anyone, whether they are your friend or an authority figure, the central issue is not their position or how long you have known them, but whether they are following God’s Word. Never accept someone telling you, “Do what I say because I’m your leader,” or, “You should do what I do because we are friends,” but only, “You should do this because it is within the boundaries given in God’s Word.” If we use reasons other than God’s Word to justify ostensibly “Godly” issues then we are following in the footsteps of Satan—replacing God’s Word with our own and doing things because “we said so.”  An authority who is truly “Godly” will never say, “Because I’m the boss,” but, “It is within the wisdom and boundaries set by God’s Word, regardless of who the boss is.”

Many young people raised in Religion feel “distant from God.” Perhaps too many “Godly Authorities” are in the way of their growth in Christ. Leaders are friends and they help keep an organization on the same page and working properly. We shouldn’t allow our view of leaders to take any precedence over our relationship with the Lord or the guidance of His Word.

Perhaps, when we realize God doesn’t anoint every one in charge, we’ll do a better job of electing the next “people-appointed” President.

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