08/23

Church Authority

“Dear brothers and sisters, honor those who are your leaders in the Lord’s work. They work hard among you and warn you against all that is wrong. Think highly of them and give them your wholehearted love.”
I Thessalonians 5:12-13 NLT

In Mark 6:3-6, Jesus was unable to do many miracles for the people of Nazareth because they did not recognize His value. Jesus said, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own country, among his own relatives, and in his own house. Now He could do no mighty work there…” This is a lesson to us to be careful who or what we treat as common. The ones who valued Jesus and the anointing on His life, received from that anointing. The ones who did not honor Him did not receive what Jesus had to offer, even through He was more than willing to make Himself available.

In Matthew 10:40-42, Jesus spoke about receiving the ones He has sent, whether a church leader, a righteous believer, or a young child. When we value the ones sent by God, then we receive God and from the anointing they carry. When you honor your pastor as the spiritual authority in your local church, then you honor God and can receive from your pastor’s spiritual gift. If you do not honor your pastor, then do not be surprised if you do not receive from his or her ministry. When you honor the anointing, you will receive from the anointing.

God did not design for any one person to operate isolated from the rest of the Church. When you honor your church leadership, there are many blessings that open up to you. When you honor authority, your purpose can find trusted expression among the group. Together we make up a body. A dismembered part of the body cannot find the life and vitality it requires when it is separated from the life flow of the whole. When you honor leadership, you are making provision for unity and cooperating with vision. When you participate with the local church and yield to spiritual authority, the purpose God has planted within you has a place to grow and flourish.

If church leadership isn’t healthy, the matter of honor can become controlling. If a church member isn’t healthy, honor can be dysfunctional and strange. However, when a church is healthy and honor is in done in a proper fashion, the Holy Spirit is esteemed and has liberty to move. However, no leader or church is perfect. Learn to honor and love leaders who are fallible, putting your trust in God as a higher authority.

Application: Romans 13:7 says, “Render… honor to whom honor.” Take time today to pray for your pastor and local church.

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