Authority Series Part 1: Introduction to Spiritual Authority

Episode 46

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Hosted by
Carl Joseph

Carl is a biblical scholar, minister, husband, father and life coach. In his mid-twenties he had a powerful encounter with God and saw miraculous healings as a result. He passionately shares these stories and empowers others to fulfill their God-given potential.

Understanding your spiritual authority in Christ is a key component to being a successful Christian. This podcast serves as an introduction to a foundational series on spiritual authority. Without Christ, we are destitute in the spiritual realm and receptive to attack. It’s only by entering into covenant are we able to fully embrace the deliverance that Christ paid for on the cross. Few believers are walking in the full measure of spiritual authority that God desires for them. We aren’t meant to be passive, thinking everything that happens to us is God’s will. We must fight for God’s plan to come to pass in our lives and understanding your spiritual authority is crucial to its manifestation…

Here is a complete transcript of the podcast…(below)

Friend, what I’m about to share with you something that will no doubt change your life, if you get a hold of it. Understanding your authority in Christ is a key component to living a successful life as a Christian. Let me start out by defining what authority is. Authority by Webster’s definition is” the power to give orders to make decisions; the power or right to direct or control someone or something. “In laymen’s terms authority is delegated power. You can have authority without power, and you can have power without authority, but for maximum impact you need to understand and exercise your authority and power in the context of what Christ has granted to you. If an unarmed police officer encounters an armed robber, he has authority but no power in this case. From the perspective of the robber, he has power but no authority, because the robber has the gun. But the most effective police officer of all, is one who carries both a badge and firearm, as he surely displays both the authority and power bestowed to him by the city or state in which he resides. He is therefore a representative of the governing body that delegated him the power and authority. Friend, you are an ambassador for Christ and represent him on this earth.

A policeman has a badge to prove he has been sanctioned by the governmental body to enforce the law. He has been granted authority bestowed to him by that governmental body. You know that if you challenge his power or authority, you’re effectively confronting the entire US government and local ruling bodies. However, not only that, he has a gun and a Taser; pepper spray etc. and who knows what other weapons at his disposal to enforce that authority. It’s no use a policeman putting his hand up in front of traffic expecting a 1 ton car to stop; but he has authority to do so. Have you ever tried to stop traffic when you’re trying to back up a trailer from a driveway? You will find that not everyone stops for you, because they know you have no authority to be directing traffic. In the spirit realm, Satan sees your authority but he mostly fears those Christians who have understanding of their authority and enforce it.

Now we have to understand that our entire society runs upon the concept of authority. If I report to my boss, my boss reports to his VP, the VP’s report to the CEO and the CEO reports to the board of directors and so on. Who is the board of Directors accountable to? The stockholders and GOD!!?  The structure and order of Authority is God’s system, He set it up that way. It’s His template for order in the universe and this world. Any resistance posed against this order in which God instigated, is called rebellion or lawlessness. These are not godly traits.

The structure of bestowed authority is also the Modis Operandi for the armed forces and certainly an understanding of authority is essential for cohesive armed forces in battle. If the chain of command is not obeyed there is disorder and dysfunction. When this occurs, an organization loses its effectiveness. When we stop hearing from the commander in Chief (God the Father) we are likely to become an easy target for the enemy. Often times in battle soldiers have to obey an order that makes no sense at all. It requires faith in the leadership and the authority figure, why? Because those in authority have more information than you do and are in a better position to asses why that order is the most suitable for the situation. Sometimes God asks us to do things that don’t make sense to our natural mind, it takes courage sometimes to press ahead without knowing why or having full understanding. (1 Cor 13:12) talks about seeing through the glass darkly; we know in part and prophecy in part. God often leads us step by step; He doesn’t always show us the big picture. He knows what’s best for us and he sees the big picture, so we need to trust him even when the thing He’s asking you to do, doesn’t make sense. Interestingly there are several scriptures that make it clear that we are in a war, a spiritual war, and we are soldiers in that war; where Satan tries to get a foothold on the souls of men. The famous hymn, “onward Christian soldiers, marching as to war” is a reminder of this and Ephesians 6 also talks of the armor of God; if we need armor then we are in a battle.

We have to realize friend, that in order for society to operate effectively and peaceably, we have been granted inalienable rights by God himself and these rights in theory are to be upheld by governmental structure or ruling kings on the earth. God established the governmental system and laws as a means to mitigate lawlessness and anarchy on the earth. These ruling bodies are established by God himself, to protect the innocent and uphold righteousness, but that is not to say that the leaders make the right decisions for us, each and every time. These ruling bodies are susceptible to evil forces as we are, if not more so and that is why the scripture makes it plain that we are to pray for those in authority.

1 Samuel 15:23 – 23 “For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the Lord, he hath also rejected thee from being king.”

In this instance the prophet Samuel is speaking to King Saul, but as of that moment the kingship was stripped from him. In his particular case he had a pattern of disobedience in his life. He repeatedly disobeyed the Lord over and over. What particularly ticked off God in this case was he began to perform the services of a Priest by making an offering to God on the behalf of the people, which was not a part of his office as King. God had been patient with him, but he had now begun to operate in the priestly office, which he was not ordained or anointed for. In the Old Testament there were 3 distinct offices, King, Prophet and Priest. Saul was a King, not a priest and he crossed the line one too many times. God rebuked him, and the search for another King started right there. Incidentally there is only one who has operated in all three offices or is allowed to, that would be the Lord Jesus Christ himself. He was a prophet when he walked the earth, he is presently our High Priest and he will soon be our conquering King.

Whilst he was on earth he operated as a prophet; a prophet represented God before the people; a priest represented the people before God. In heaven right now Jesus is a priest, He is the High priest of our confession, seated at the right hand of the Father. When he arrives on earth the second time, he will have his crown on full display as he is KING who has come to subdue his enemies and set up his reign for 1000 years. Friend, the point I’m trying to make in this passage, is that authority and the subsequent chain of command is a structure that God put in place to retain order in the earth. Although the system is flawed as humans are running it, it is still God’s will for you to obey your authority figures, unless they are obviously commanding you to do something against God’s word. Rebellion is witchcraft. This is a strong statement. Who was the first rebel? That would be Lucifer who basically decided to usurp his authority and try to claim himself, “like the Most High”. The spirit that overrides authority is the cause of all revolutions, coups and mutinies. This spirit opposes God. So how do governments keep order? Policeman, military, intelligence institutions, Principals, Governors, senators etc. In essence these people are ministers on God’s behalf and we should honor them. They have been delegated power and authority to enforce order through laws and structure in society. Having authority without the power to back it up is an inept demonstration of government, having power without authority is akin to rebellion.

1 Timothy 1:8-13 – 8 “But we know that the law is good, if a man use it lawfully;Knowing this, that the law is not made for a righteous man, but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and for sinners, for unholy and profane, for murderers of fathers and murderers of mothers, for manslayers.”

Why isn’t the law made for the righteous man? Because the law of God is written in our hearts and we know right from wrong, we know because the Holy Spirit restrains us. We know better because the Holy Spirit both restrains and constrains us. Therefore, the spirit of rebellion is in the very dead center of an evil heart. Friend, the heart condition of people generally today is in a wounded state, and this also is scriptural. These are the last days prior to Christ’s return, they are troublesome days, they are perilous days, and we need to stay strong in the love of God and Christ’s authority.

2 Timothy 3 – “This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,Traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;”

One can easily tell that the love of pleasure is rife in our society, it follows the premise of hedonism, and our society spends billions of dollars upon entertainment. So, in order to quench rebellion and keep law and order we have the example of a policeman. In order to do his or her job correctly, and to operate on behalf of the governmental body, the police need power and authority. It’s no use having one without the other. If you have authority but no power to back it up, people will test the boundaries and find you have no means to enforce the laws that you’ve proposed, believe me there are people out there who are willing to test these boundaries. If you have power but no authority, then you are acting in rebellion as you are outside of the protective umbrella of God. Friend, I want you to know that not only has Christ granted us authority on this earth, but he has bestowed us with power also and it would be an absolute tragedy not to use it. This is one of the least known facts in Christianity today and not knowing that you have a measure of Christ’s authority and power will keep you in bondage.

It’s time to start speaking to some of the obstacles in your life right now and enforce your authority. The time for being a victim is up; it’s time to be a victor in Christ Jesus. You have to get out of this mindset of begging God to do this or that or running to Pastor every time you encounter a difficulty. The battle isn’t between God and the devil because Christ already won the battle for us. We are a triumphant church, not a warring church, therefore we enforce the terms of a battle that is already won. The battle is between you, your flesh and the devil and demon forces. The power is within you, the power is in the name of Jesus and if you have been baptized with God’s Spirit that Dunamis power is available to you 24/7, you just need to stir up the gift within you. If you are a disciple of Christ and accepted him into your heart, then he has granted you power and authority over all devils and to cure diseases (Lk 9:1). It is our job to submit to God, resist the devil and he will flee from you in terror (Jam 4:7).

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Episode 46