Power and Authority
Sozo Short Bible Studies – Category #2 – Order and Authority
This Short Study will look at Power and Authority, the meaning as well as how important these are to our Christian walk; this study will also review what can occur if we fail to apply these as God intended.
By Rev. G. E. Newmyer
Run the Race: This area of study may seem somewhat convoluted at times as we jump about in certain areas to show the background of a particular premise and how that premise was either used correctly, or misused much later. However, we need to study these areas so we can fit the pieces together and so we can walk the straight path to glory.
All of us want to run the race; but we must also desire to run it “Lawfully,” in a Godly sense. In most studies we begin with a premise; but in this case we must join two premises. The first point is based on Jesus telling us, “Go in My Name,” which is granted Authority to do something. Those with Jesus had authority in the “Name of Jesus,” (regarding Mercy) prior to and after the Cross; but the addition of the “Authority in Name of Father, Son and Holy Ghost in the Name of Jesus,” relating to Grace, came after the Resurrection (Matt 28:19-20).
Authority by The Son, Presented in The Name: Therefore, the Body of Christ became the official and established place where one will find the Authority of God. No one is going to get a separate Authority from the Father or from the Holy Ghost since they are combined in the One Authority. Does that mean we can’t pray to the Father? Or pray by the Holy Ghost? Not at all, it means that the “Authority” of Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, is presented in the “Name of Jesus.” It’s still one Name; thus the only Authority which God has granted during this Season is in His Son (Heb 1:2).
Communication & Authority Defined: Communication and Authority are different and not to be confused: Authority is the granted permission to do something from an Authority that has the legal right to grant Authority. The Father will talk to us and the Holy Ghost will talk to us; but for our Season, the premise is Grace, the Blood of Jesus, and the “Saving ability of God” for mankind.
Even having Authority doesn’t mean that one can act since one also needs “the Power” in order to carry out the Authority. This is clear in Acts; the disciples had Authority, but they were told to wait “until they received the Power from on high.” They had Power on earth before the Cross, or else they would not have been able to cast out devils, heal the sick, or preach “The kingdom at hand” (Matt 10:5-8). But that didn’t mean they could understand or carry out spiritual matters; rather their granted Authority and Power related to the Mercy of the Father forgiving their sins on earth.
Authority and Power must join in a lawful manner, or rebellion will be the result. It’s clear that the disciples before the Cross cast out devils, healed the sick, and preached. So why wait for a power from on high? Why even wait for the Holy Ghost? The conclusion shows that there must be a difference between “God’s granted Authority and Power on earth” and “God’s granted Authority and Power from heaven to earth.”
There are no devils in heaven, there is no sickness in heaven since those are earthly elements; yet casting out devils and laying hands on the sick are vital elements to the Ministry that Jesus granted every person who accepts the Cross. This study in no way is belittling the importance of casting out devils, but we must also consider that Judas cast out devils, yet Judas was unable to deal with himself.
Spiritual attributes: Authority and Power from heaven grants us the Spirit, yet it’s the Spirit (Word) in us that is saving our souls and giving us heavenly insight, God’s Wisdom, God’s Knowledge, and many other attributes that are Spiritual in nature. One can be in the Body yet still “mind the flesh,” (or remain carnal,) as the letters to the Romans and Corinthians prove. In the time of Jesus, they had the Authority and Power (under the Unction upon the Body,) to operate as members of the Body, meaning that they could lay hands on the sick, water baptize others, and even cast out devils; yet without the Spirit and being Spiritual, they really didn’t know why they were able to do those things.
Exousia: Each area of Power and Authority has importance, each has guide lines detailed for us in the Bible, and each retained in the proper manner, spell Victory. This study is to seek those guide lines, yet remain within the confines of the Authority granted to us.
Looking at Matthew 10 we find that Jesus gave power (Greek “Exousia,” meaning Authority) to His disciples to do many things, but that authority was restricted to “the things and places.” At that time, they were not Born Again and they didn’t have the Holy Ghost; but they had Authority and went out preaching, “the kingdom of heaven is at hand,” Still, they were not told to Teach, nor did they preach about the Cross and Resurrection. They were told to heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils; and freely they received, so freely they were to give (Matt 10:6-8). What did they receive Freely? Was it Money, Power, or Authority? What was it? Surely, if Jesus had power on earth to forgive sins, then He forgave the sins of His own disciples on earth (Luke 5:24). They received Pardon, or Mercy on earth and then they were able to freely give that to others. However, the ability for them to remit sins done unto them or to understand spiritual matters was yet to come on Pentecost. The activity of the followers of Jesus shows, that even the Novice or Babe in Christ who has received the forgiveness of sins by the Mercy of the Father, already has Power and Authority to operate in that Mercy.
Greater Works: Jesus also told them that they would be delivered before the councils; but they weren’t (Matt 10:17). He told them, they would be scourged; but they weren’t (Matt 10:17). He then told them not to worry, because the Spirit of their Father would speak for them; yet they couldn’t be Born Again until Jesus was glorified (Matt 10:20 & Jn 7:38-39). So, they went out and they came back, yet none of them were cast into jail, sent before the council, or scourged, nor were they brought before governors or kings for the sake of Jesus. Was Jesus wrong? No; this shows that the projection of the calling and authority would remain and grow in power and authority on Pentecost; thus after Pentecost, they were delivered before councils and scourged. If the “Spirit of the Father” would speak, what would it relate to? This would be Mercy. Jesus never told us that we would do “other works”; but He did say that we would do “Greater works.”
The Name of Jesus: Nonetheless we travel to Matthew 28 where Jesus told these same disciples (excluding Judas of course,) how All Authority (power) had been given to Him; he also told them that, in the Name (Authority) of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, they were to go out under the granted Authority which then became the “Name of Jesus.”
The Record in Heaven: One has to notice that the Son was included in both areas; thus the Son received “a Name (Authority) above all Names.” First John 5:7-8 tells us, that the Record in heaven is comprised of the Father, Word and Holy Ghost:
“For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one.”
Grace within Us as the Power from On High: We know that the Word is the So; so why not say the Son? The Word of God became the Son when the Word was made (formed, not created) flesh (Jn 1:14). The Witness on earth is the Water, Blood, and Spirit; yet, do these relate one to the other (I Jn 5:7)? Yes, the Mercy of the Father is seen in the Water, the Word is seen in the Blood, and the Holy Ghost brings us the Spirit. The Record has taken all events into account; yet to fit the Record, we must have the Witness. “The Authority” coupled with the “Power from on high,” is the “ability of Grace” in us.
The disciples were given boundaries along with the authority that they were granted, in that they were to: teach all nations,(not just Israel), then to baptize those who believed in “the Name” of the Father (Mercy), Son (Grace), and Holy Ghost (power from on high) in water, welcoming the converts into the Body. Then they were to teach the converts to observe all the things which Jesus commanded them. However, Jesus at that point, didn’t tell them to heal anyone, raise anyone from the dead, or cast the devil out of anyone. Yet in Acts, we read where Peter’s shadow “healed”; we also learn how he and John went to temple and at the Gate Beautiful, a man was healed. Peter raised a girl from the dead, Paul cast out devils, (not counting Philip the Evangelist who cast out devils), and he healed the sick and baptized many in water, including a Gentile Eunuch. Had they all gone crazy? No, not at all; the Authority granted which is mentioned in Matthew, was to “make disciples”; yet the Authority over the Body is so we can do the works of the ministry.
The Greatest Change of All: They were just as capable of casting out devils before the Cross as they were after. The only hindrance would have been their own unbelief; but that changes when the New Birth takes place. The Power from on High made the greatest change of all; thus casting out devils is nothing compared to “making disciples while being led by the Spirit.” It was the Power from High that produced the New Birth, which was/is the Power to carry out the Authority in a lawful manner.
The Authority also granted them permission to baptize; yet in John’s account, they were already baptizing people well before the Cross (Jn 3:22-24). They were not however, baptizing people in the Name of Jesus before the Authority was granted in Matthew 28.
The Baptism of John: John’s Baptism was vital; but it was timed. If someone conducted John’s Baptism after the Cross in ignorance, it would still be illegal; but if they knew of the requirement of Belief by the candidate, yet used John’s Baptism, they engaged in a heretical baptism. For that reason Paul re-baptized the disciples in Acts 19 in the Name of Jesus. We can “do something of God,” but in the wrong time or wrong area” and this be committing an illegal act. Doing the Law of Moses is not illegal for those under the Law; but it would be an illegal act for us who are not under the Law of Moses. Doing the Law of the Spirit for those who have the Spirit is lawful; but for those who don’t have the Spirit, it’s unlawful. Authority grants us “Standing” or “a Right to conduct a lawful act,” and “the Power” is the ability to carry out the Authority.
Having said that, it doesn’t take long in studying the Book of Revelation to find that evil has a power and authority as well; it also becomes clear that one can use power from one source and authority from another. The son of perdition comes with the working of Satan; yet we also read in the Book of Revelation how this “Beast of the Earth” uses the Authority (power in KJV) of the Beast of the Sea. Therefore, it’s not merely the Authority, but who gave it; thus the Authority of darkness is limited to one thing; and that is destruction.
Authority for those in the Body: Our Authority is from Jesus; and so we operate “in the Name of Jesus,” because we are members of the Body of Christ. However, our Power is from on high; but when the disciples were granted the Greater Authority, where was Jesus (Matt 28:18-20)? He was on the earth; thus Matthew 28 shows the granted Authority; but it is not the Power. In Acts, Chapter One, the disciples wondered if Jesus was to restore again, the kingdom to Israel; but He answered with a warning and a division. It was not for them to know (experience) the Times or the Seasons which the Father has put in His own Power (authority). But they “shall (were to) receive Power, after that the Holy Ghost has come upon them.”
This did not mean that the Power was to come first and then the Holy Ghost; rather, it shows that the Power comes after the Holy Ghost (would come upon them); and the purpose was for them (and us) to be Witnesses unto Jesus. The restoration of Israel is something which the Father has put in His own power, not in our power. We are to know about it, but not do it, or be caught in it.
The Seed of God: The Holy Ghost brings the Seed of God, which is always “the Power unto Salvation”; and that same Seed makes us “a Witness” for Jesus unto Salvation, not unto Judgment or Destruction. Our Authority and Power are confined to that area alone; we are not granted the Authority to destroy.
The Offices: What other Authority is specific in nature? The Offices are. After Jesus “took captivity captive, “ He gave gifts (Doma) unto men, which we know as the fivefold Offices (Eph 4:8-11); and the purpose for this was/is “for the perfecting of the saints,” as well as “for the work of the ministry” and “for the edifying of the Body of Christ” (until we all come into the Unity of the Faith and of the Knowledge of the Son of God, unto a Perfect (complete) man, unto the measure of the stature of the Fullness of Christ – Eph 4:12-13). However, any Office does not have the authority to appoint to the Offices, nor does it have the authority to remove anyone from the Office.
Leadership has the authority to grant (appoint) people into “Helps” positions, which are Bishops or Deacons, as well as to appoint Elders; but leadership does not have the authority to appoint anyone to any of the Offices, only the Holy Ghost does that (Acts 13:1-3). Leaders confirm as they hear from the Holy Ghost; but to take it upon themselves to appoint to the fivefold ministry would be “usurping the authority of the Holy Ghost.”
There are many areas of granted authority and power; but they are predicated on position. Husbands are to love their wives; thus Jesus has granted an authority and power for them to do so, just as wives are to submit to the husbands, which also takes an authority and power to do so. The same power and authority is granted unto all Believers in the Body, since they are to love one another and submit to one another.
If the husband doesn’t know what love consists of or if the wife has no idea what “submit” means, how can they do either one with or without authority? Peter tells the husbands to honor (treasure) their wives as unto the weaker vessel (I Pet 3:7). Does this mean that the wife is weak? No; it does not. The concept means “a treasured possession” one that was put into a place of protection. However, controlling the wife and protecting her, are different. The word “submit” means “not to cause hindrances, or to engage in debates”; it doesn’t mean “to be a doormat.”
Jesus loves the Body, but He doesn’t control it, dominate it, or force it to do as He desires. That is clear in the seven letters to the seven churches, Jesus never said, “obey or else”; but He did say, “repent”, “he that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit (of God) says to the churches.” Thus, Jesus gave requests, not demands. Jesus allowed Peter to be Peter, John to be John; the forming process is based in a “change of nature,” not a forced change. We must desire the change and then submit to it. To force a mate to be what we want, is neither love, nor submission and surely not granted under the authority given to us as Believers.
When we remain in our given area, all things work together for good; but if we presume we can make up our own rules or move outside of our given realm, things may still seem to work, but not to the potential God intended; and we will also have to give account in the end. Power used outside of Authority, is rebellion; misuse of authority is witchcraft. The term “usurp authority” is not misusing our authority, it’s attempting to use someone else’s. If we are a teacher, do we attempt to be the prophet? If we are in “Helps,” do we attempt to be the Pastor?
It’s obvious that we can enter witchcraft when we move outside of the granted authority; and witchcraft is merely misusing an authority, or better to describe, it is one who has “natural authority” while attempting to use it in a spiritual manner. The same would be true in reverse; if one is spiritual they are not to attempt to impress God by doing a law sent to the carnal, as the letter to the Galatians proves.
Balaam wanted to make gain; and he felt that his position gave him the right to “earn a living.” So, he pushed the calling beyond the limit; yet God told him to, “Go”, only because God knew that Balaam was going anyway.
We said that things could get convoluted at times; and here is an example. The jump from Numbers to the Book of Revelation shows us why Peter said, “Which have forsaken the right way, and are gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Bosor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness” (II Pet 2:15).
The Lessons given from the story of Balaam: Peter gives us the intent of Balaam and how he was going to use his power to sneak out from under the granted authority, by using his position to venture into an area where he had no authority. We find some other interesting clues in Peter’s words; Peter isn’t talking about someone who didn’t have authority and power, rather he says they were once in the “right way” and then they went astray like Balaam, or followed after something that lured them in the same manner as Balaam was lured.
Balaam being a prophet, was also connected to the third family of Abraham. Balaam knew the premise, that “what God has blessed, no one can curse.” However, he figured that there had to be a way around this, so he could add to his personal gain. The word “wages” could represent money; but it could also mean other things as well. The word comes from the Greek “Mistos” meaning “a wage, or reward given.” Balaam was going to make gain, no matter what; yet he was so deceived, that he felt that God approved of his actions.” But, God didn’t ordain Balaam’s actions; Balaam twisted the Word to fit his purpose and then supposed that God would honor him. At first it worked; but then the path started to narrow which led to the voice of a donkey speaking to the prophet. What? One donkey talking to another? Who has heard of such a thing? Balaam has his clues before him; yet it took a donkey to see what the man couldn’t.
In the Book of Revelation we see, “the Doctrine of Balaam,” not the man’s office or even his prophecies that became his error (Rev 2:14). Prophecy is not Doctrine; rather Doctrine is what we teach. So what did Balaam teach? He taught Balak how to get what he wanted, even if he had to get the people to curse themselves. What was the office of Balaam? It was not that of a teacher; thus he went around his calling, to get what he wanted.
Power & Authority: Faith works; and it was designed to do so. Thus, power works; and it was designed to do so. Faith in anything but God becomes mind power and witchcraft; whereas, power, used outside of the granted Authority, becomes rebellion.
Power and Authority have guidelines; they keep us from running after a Balaam heart or a Jezebel mind. We are told that “faith comes by hearing.” But what would happen if we reversed that? Could we say something, thinking God will hear and obey us? Yes, but that is witchcraft since it twists the precept by reversing the authority of faith. It’s by faith that we please God; but not the other way around (where by our faith we get God to please us).
John the Baptist had authority and power but it was restricted in nature. For instance, he didn’t cast out devils or lay hands on the sick. Yet the disciples of Jesus, and even the 70 who Jesus sent out, did those things. John however, was filled with the Holy Ghost; but the Holy Ghost will not go beyond the limits of the authority granted the person.
The disciples had granted authority and power to cast out devils but there were not filled with the Holy Ghost, whereas John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Ghost, but didn’t cast out devils.
In John’s case, he made statements regarding Jesus; thus no one calls Jesus Lord, but by the Holy Ghost. In John Nathanael said “thou are the Son of God”; but Jesus responded with “Son of man” (Jn 1:49 & 1:51). Nathanael at that time, lacked the authority or revelation to make the statement; but later, Peter will make the statement, but by revelation from the Father for a specific reason. All that shows that Authority to operate, has guidelines; and we cannot assume that since Jesus gave us Authority, we can do as we please. We cannot use the Name of Jesus as if it’s some weapon to be used against flesh and blood.
Although we tend to think of Power and Authority as the same thing, we find that they are actually different. We can have Authority, but no Power. An example would be a Law that grants someone the ability to do something, but lacks giving them the power to carry it out. Another example would be a policeman; the Policeman is granted Authority to make arrests, give citations, and direct traffic, but without the signs of his power, he lacks the ability to enforce the authority. When we see the uniform, the vehicle, the badge, or all of them together… we immediately know that Authority and Power was granted to the person holding them. Anyone can say, “Stop in the Name of the Law”; but only those with Power and Authority granted by the Law can do anything about that command. If a talking bird said “Stop in the name of the law,” we would laugh; but if a policeman in full uniform said, “Stop in the Name of the Law,” we would stop, or at least know we were breaking the law by ignoring the command.
There are those who pose as law enforcement officers; they might have a badge and uniform, but they lack the Authority. If so, they would be operating unlawfully, although they might have the outside appearance. Paul talked about false apostles who come with the “self-transformed outward appearance of righteousness”; but inside Satan still reigns and they would be considered “Wicked or Unlawful” (II Cor 11:13-15).
Also, we know that a policeman has the “power of arrest”; and really, they can arrest anyone for anything, whether the person arrested did the deed or not. However, the Authority over the policeman is the court system; thus the courts determine if the arrest was lawful. For the arresting powers to be “lawful,” they must operate within the guidelines of the Authority granted. No policeman in their right mind would arrest a thief, and then charge them with murder. The authority is limited to the violation and procedures regarding the violation, just as they have procedures within the guidelines of the authority in other areas. No policeman would direct traffic in such a way as to cause an accident since they know that “the Powers that be,” would hold them responsible. The granted Authority is designed to keep the Power within the guidelines, thus making it Lawful. Wow! That was easy! That was a short lesson, right? Not so, since there are elements of both Power and Authority that are very important to our Christian walk.
The Authority in the Name: The Centurion knew that if Jesus spoke, the Authority of Christ would manifest. For some reason we forget how Precious and Important that Name is. Some of us tend to pull it out like a six-gun for the shoot-out; but we must consider that every Name God used in the Old Testament stood for some area of Authority. Yet Jesus said that All Authority was found in His Authority and then, He told us to “Go in His Name!”
“Jehovah,” “El, Elohiym,” or any numbers of titles were all placed in “The Name of Jesus.” If we say, “In the Name of Jehovah,” we would be violating the Authority granted Jesus. The Father gave Jesus a Name above all names; and all usually means All. We do not have authority to use the name of Jehovah, or the title El, or Elohiym since it is not the “Body of El”; it’s the Body of Christ.
That doesn’t take away from the Father; rather it speaks of Authority only and if we take this concept beyond the Authority issue, this would be an err as well. If God walked into a room He would not have to produce His passport for identification. The issue is Authority, not some form of identification. The premise of… “Well, don’t you think that God would like to be called by His name?”…this lacks knowledge regarding the Authority of God. What Name would you use? Abraham didn’t know God as Jehovah, but Moses did. Would you use El or Elohiym? The Hebrew, Greek, what? If you call on the name of Jesus, and it worked, stick with it.
If Jesus included the Gentile and Jew in the Body, He also included all the languages. It’s not whether one says “Jesus” in one particular language or not; what matters, is whether one has the position to use that Name. If we said, “Come out in the Name of Jesus” and the devil came out, then it worked; so we need not find some “special” name to use to make us feel superior over the rest of the Body. The lust of being superior over people needs to be dwelt within the Name of Jesus.
First John says the antichrist nature denies both the Father and Son; thus we can’t presume that Jesus is the Father, or the Father is Jesus. However, we must know we operate under the Authority which was granted to the Son, “unto Salvation.”
The Body & The Church: During the time of “The Day,” the Father is not off working separately and the Holy Ghost isn’t running around making converts in some other religious body. The granted Authority is in the Name of Jesus centering on the Body; and the Body centers on the Church, and the Church on Jesus. Not all those in the Body are “of the Church”; but all those in the Church are of “The Body.” There are religious orders, many in the world; but only one heard, “All power (authority) is given unto Me.” The purpose of “The Day” is for the Preparation of the Bride of Christ; thus the Bride makes Herself ready, which means that we have the keys “in hand.” When we say, “In the Name of Jesus,” we are invoking all the Authority on earth and in heaven. No wonder we can come boldly to the throne.
Fig Tree: Mark 11:22 and following have become important verses of late; they are a result of what happened to a Fig Tree. The metaphor Fig Tree, as we know, stands for the religious order of Israel. Jesus said something to a real fig tree and the next day Peter made an observation and then made a comment. Jesus said “say unto this mountain” and not just any mountain but “this mountain” (Mark 11:23).
Peter, like us, probably stood there thinking, “I said fig tree, so where did He come up with a mountain?” Peter said something based on his observation; and Jesus taught him about authority as well as how operating in the proper authority, can change the way you observe things.
The Mountain: Peter saw something, made a conclusion and voiced it; but did he make a correct evaluation? Or did he just accuse Jesus of going beyond the granted Authority? In order to find out, we must venture into the study. The Fig Tree wasn’t told to “go”; yet Jesus said that the authority granted was for the purpose of seeing something “Go.” This is one of those areas where we see that we can have what we say; but what did we say? “Come here mountain?” No, it was, “Go.” The lesson continues to the area of forgiveness; thus the Authority in that area refers to Mercy. When we pray, we are to forgive in order to be forgiven (Mark 11:25-26). The Mountain sits on us and it can block our vision; but it can’t determine that what we are seeing, is really what we are seeing.
Jesus made a statement of fact; yet, Peter saw it as “cursing.” Peter told Jesus, “The tree you cursed”; but did Jesus curse the tree? If Jesus had the Authority to Bless and Curse not, how could He curse the Tree? If we have been told to “Bless and Curse not” how can we curse? Is faith cursing? Cursing by a Christian is an act of Power outside the granted Authority, becoming rebellion and a misuse of Power. Jude tells us that even Michael knew better than that, and told the devil “the Lord rebuke you” (Jude 9). Jesus made a statement of fact regarding the Fig Tree based on His observations made in the temple. If we saw two cars headed for each other and said, “They’re going to hit,” did we cause them to hit? Or did we make a statement of fact?
Peter said many things before the Cross; and if we think that he was correct all the time, we err. On at least one occasion, Jesus rebuked Peter by saying, “Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.” (Matt 16:23). Also when Peter saw the Transfigured Jesus, he wanted to build three tabernacles; but the Father said, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him.” (Matt 17:5).
Peter made a statement, but the Father instructed him to “hear.” When Peter made his observation of the Fig Tree, in the process he allowed “a mountain” to interpret what he saw. So, rather than see “faith, hope and love,” he saw what he perceived to be a “curse.” Then Peter’s conclusion prompted Jesus to say, “Have faith in God.” What? What has that got to do with the Fig Tree? Everything! The Fig Tree didn’t call for or depend on faith. A change was taking place; there was a place for that mountain, but not on Peter. The tense shows that the mountain is something “over us,” as an object placed between us and heaven; thus, it would be something which can restrict heaven’s flow to us, and potentially stop us from reaching heaven. Jesus will show Peter what motivated Peter’s thoughts, even if Peter didn’t know it himself.
James and John wanted to call fire down from heaven, because a prophet of old did; but they heard that Jesus came to bring life, not take it (Luke 9:54) making it, “Right premise, wrong time and timing.” We may have at times, what appears to be a sound Godly premise, but we also might be applying it under the wrong authority, at the wrong time.
Was Elijah wrong in calling fire down? After all, the False Prophet causes fire to come from heaven; so, maybe Elijah was a false prophet? Hardly. Elijah was in a time and season and he had a message regarding “that which was to come”; but “he” was not that “which was to come.” Jesus said that the message came by John the Baptist, not that John was Elijah, only that the Elijah message came through John. At that we find that the least in the Kingdom is greater than John. Wanting to be “Elijah like” is the wrong desire for the authority granted us. Simply finding something in the Bible doesn’t mean that our authority will allow us to do it. Calling fire down is one example and cursing is another. We are given an Authority that is purposed unto Salvation, not Judgment or Damnation.
Peter understood the Fig Tree; and deep within, he wanted to see that tree cursed. But Jesus told him, “have faith in God”… or better…to turn from the concept of cursing, to having faith. This is clearer when we find that the teaching is really centered on forgiveness (Mark 11:25-26). What does “when you stand praying forgive” have to do with “say unto this mountain”? And what does all that have to do with Peter’s observations? Everything. Peter made an observation based on an emotion. Jesus didn’t have to read his mind; He discerned Peter’s motive. Thus Jesus is answering the intent of Peter’s statement, while informing Peter what that intent was. When all we see is vile, corruption, evil doings, error, or desire to see all those we consider “evil” cursed, our intent is in error. We must say to that Mountain, “Go!” and then put our faith in God in order to remove it.
When John and James wanted to call fire down, Jesus told them, “You know not what manner of spirit you are of.” (Luke 9:55) What? Cast the devil out of them quickly. But no; that isn’t the context, its reasoning and conclusions based on a nature. They had a premise, “like Elijah did” (Luke 9:54); they even had authority, but they were about to go outside of the authority by using the wrong power. They wanted Jesus to “command” them to call fire down, which would have caused Jesus to operate outside the authority of “bring life.” That would have destroyed the entire premise of the Cross, for Jesus came to save man, not destroy mankind (Luke 9:56). James and John were upset, “ how dare these people reject Jesus (Luke 9:53)? A little fire will correct their behavior… not much, just enough to let them know they did wrong.” For Peter it was watching the religious leaders mock his Lord, leaving him thinking that they deserved to be cursed; and when he saw the fig tree, he felt it was cursed, but it was not. It failed to produce the “good first fruit”; thus it could not produce proper second fruit. A fig tree that is incapable of producing fruit will dry up from the roots until it’s transplanted; and at that it may bring forth leaves, but it will never again produce fruit. Therefore, we find that Faith in God must entail understanding, but within the operation of Authority and Power.
Jesus sent out the seventy and when they returned, they were amazed at the Authority they held, that even the devils were subject to them through the Name of Jesus (Luke 10:17). We know by now that the term “Name” refers to Authority; but Jesus told the seventy, “Notwithstanding in this rejoice not, that the spirits are subject unto you; but rather rejoice, because your names are written in heaven.” (Luke 10:20). Having authority over devils is not wrong, limiting ourselves to that premise is. The seventy also heard how the Name of Jesus gives us “power” to tread on serpents and scorpions and over all the “power” of the enemy (Luke 10:19). That comes in real handy if you’re called to the wilderness to preach. We also know that these metaphors relate to malicious people (serpents) and those who are deceptive in nature (scorpions).
We also find the word “power” represents different Greek words; the first use of “power” in the phrase “power to tread” is the Greek “Exousia” meaning Authority, but the second word “Power” in the phrase, “power of the enemy” is the Greek “Dunamis,” meaning Power. Both Authority and Power are granted, but limited. We are not allowed to tread on a brother or sister in the Lord; we are not allowed to make serpents tread on the scorpions and we are not allowed to use the “power of the enemy”.
God’s reciprocal procedure was evident in the Temple cleaning; the Power and Authority granted under the Old Covenant was still in the Temple, but the religious rulers were not operating in accordance with the Authority. God presents; and man receives. God presented the proper means under the Authority; but the religious rulers went outside the Authority and thus, Jesus cleaned the temple twice. The first time it was “My Father’s House” and next, it was “My House”; yet the religious rulers were in charge. If God was solely in charge, the Temple would have remained clean; but we can see that the Authority for the Temple came from God, yet the ownership was still God’s. David wanted to build the house for God, yet man would maintain it. The example for us is obvious; the Body is given to us, just as the Temple was given to Israel. The Church is not given to us; we are given to the Church. Much different.
So, which was greater? The Law of Moses? Or Rome? On the surface it would appear Rome was, but the Jews were able to bring about the Cross by using the granted permission of Rome, represented by the soldiers of Rome. The religious rulers used a method of the world to put pressure on Pontius Pilate to get their way; yet the Jews were conquered by Rome. They Usurped the authority of Rome, which means that they used another authority not granted to them, to gain what they wanted. This was just as Jesus warned them, that they would do the lusts of their father, the devil, by using the authority of the devil to carry out their plans. However, it was all in the plan and what appeared evil, God used to bring about the greatest Good mankind could hope for.
There are times when God “allows” things; but that doesn’t mean God either condones, or causes them. God used Balaam, Korah, and the children in the wilderness as examples for us. If God is so powerful, why not make the children in the wilderness mix the word with faith? Why not make Korah obey Moses? The children had the faith to cross the Red Sea, so why not make them continue in that faith? They had choice; having choice is one thing and the result of that choice another.
Cleaning of the temple: Just prior to saying, “have faith in God” Jesus entered the temple and cleaned it; but if this temple was the House of God, why would there be a need to clean it? After all, God is the Power of all Powers and the Authority of Authorities. Shouldn’t the Power and Authority of God be greater than the ability of man to turn the House of God into “a den of thieves?” (Mark 11:17). Surely God is able to “rule His own house.” Once we understand this, we can understand why Paul called the Corinthians the “temple”; they had the Spirit, but were still carnal so they were in need of a “temple cleaning” .
What caused Jesus to say that the Temple had become a “den of thieves”? What did the religious rulers steal? They had used their granted position as a means to bring about their prosperity at the expense of God’s people. They had a Commandment to “take tithe”; but they didn’t have a Commandment to rob widows. We are told to “Receive tithe,” but not to “take it” (Heb 7:6-9).
One would think, that if they had Commandment, surely they could extract funds. Not so; they had Commandment to “take tithes,” so those under the Law who paid tithes could provide for the Temple. That did not included selling doves, exchanging money or selling items. The Temple was in the hands of the religious leaders; thus God “corrected” them. He didn’t destroy them. Later God removed His hand from the Temple and the Romans destroyed it in 70AD.
When John the Baptist came face to face with Jesus, he said, “I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?” (Matt 3:14). John knew what type of baptism that Jesus would do; thus John was not talking about water baptism, rather he wanted to be baptized by Jesus with the Holy Ghost and Fire. Did John go outside his authority? No, he didn’t say Jesus must, he said “he had need.” John had the authority and power to baptize Jesus in water; thus Jesus submitted to the baptism of John, but it was not time for Jesus to baptize anyone. Jesus said, “Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness.” (Matt 3:15).
John did one type of baptism, but preached how Jesus would baptize with the Holy Ghost and Fire; thus he had the Promise, Jesus, being presented the ability, but the timing was not yet (Jn 7:39). Therefore, there is the Authority, the Power, and the Timing. To make “sons of God” before the Resurrection was within the Power and Authority, but not within the timing.
At the Ascension of Jesus, the disciples were told to “Tarry” until they were imbued with Power from on high; however, Peter was still “natural Peter” and made the decision to have a Board Meeting to discuss filling the vacated slot of Judas. Jesus never told them to have a meeting and never told them to fill the slot of Judas; but in Peter’s mind, it seemed that filling the vacated slot was the right thing to do at that time. It seemed to be something that had to be done before they could continue on (Acts 1:17-21).
So, how many of us think that there are things we must do, before the Promise can manifest? We think we have to make the prophecy come to pass; yet prophecy proves itself by coming to pass. We are impatient, assuming God is not able to bring the prophecy to pass; so at times, we venture beyond our authority. However, we are told to give prophecy, not make it come to pass.
We find several good lessons from Acts chapter 1, first Peter was still Peter, even after being told “feed My sheep”. He was still attempting to control things, and use his own reasoning. This is not “Peter bashing”, merely showing how any of us without the Spirit of Christ remain natural and unable to understand spiritual matters.
Peter had been granted power and authority well before this time; but it was limited and restricted. It did not allow him to appoint anyone to any office (Matt 10:5-15). Then he and the others were granted higher Authority, yet that Authority did not grant them to appoint anyone to the Offices of the Lord (Matt 28:18-20). In Acts Chapter 1, Peter was still operating under authority, but without Power. Therefore, Peter had the authority to “Go ye into all the world,” but he didn’t have the Power to accomplish the goal. His “activity” in appointing an office was absent Authority; and really, that is the only time in which we find any leader appointing anyone to any of the five-fold offices. The leaders can appoint Bishops, Deacons, and Elders, but not Apostles.
Rather than hear, “Separate unto me”; however in Acts chapter 1, they cast lots (or voted). They prayed and had Scripture, but never heard from the Lord. The last thing the Lord actually told them to do, was “Tarry,” not vote. God was not going to answer a prayer outside of the Authority granted; and later, the Holy Ghost will place whom He will into the positions (Acts 13:1-3).
What was this “power” they were to Tarry for? It was “The Spirit,” “The gift of the Holy Ghost.” When the Holy Ghost came, it all changed, as evidenced in Acts 13:1-3; because when the Holy Ghost said “Separate unto Me,” no one there added, “Peter cast lots, so don’t listen to the Holy Ghost” or “Let’s cast lots.” No; the Holy Ghost picks whom He desires. But when Peter was casting lots, the Holy Ghost had not yet been given. Peter had Scripture to back him up, not just one verse, but several. They prayed and they were of “one mind,” but they were operating outside of the granted Authority.
We also find that the “meeting,” rather than having followed the command to “tarry” didn’t stop the Pentecost experience or the promised Power from on high. Why? The leaders were surely out of order; but the congregation was not. The One Accord in prayer was completing the purpose of the Ingress Aires (Jn 20:21-23). The Holy Ghost came based on the completion of the command “receive ye the Holy Ghost”; but the command, to “Tarry” was still there as well. The natural mind will hear “Tarry” and presume, “well, we’re not going to other houses, we’re right here, so this meeting is still tarrying.” No; it wasn’t since “to Tarry” means to Wait.
The meeting to fill the slot makes “natural sense,” but lacks spiritual sense. In Acts 1:19 Peter said, “And it was known unto all the dwellers at Jerusalem”; thus, the reasoning was, “how can we operate without filling the slot, all the people will think we have not forgiven Judas.” Peter felt that there had to be a sign of “forgiveness” or some element for the disciples to point to in order to show the people that they “have forgiven all who have trespassed against them.” However, filling the slot of Judas didn’t prove that; and after the Holy Ghost came, the name of Judas was not even mentioned. Basically, the people could have cared less, but the “signs and wonders” got their attention.
Peter’s other point of reasoning was based on something which the Holy Ghost said through David (Acts 1:16); however, he forgot the Proceeding Word, which was “Tarry.” Any of us can jump off doing something “God said” to another, yet might find that we are in rebellion in the process. God can tell us “pray with your mate,” but we run off and read the Bible for hours. After all, what could be wrong with reading your Bible? If it’s to avoid what God has told us to do, it’s still rebellion. We’re not belittling Peter, or saying Jesus was better off leaving the guy to remain a fisher of fish; rather we’re showing that we can have Authority, yet without the Power, we will end up trusting our own talent or ability and give birth to an Ishmael.
To examine this event further and apply it to some of us, we all know that there are times when we allow our minds to run off into some imagination where we make decisions based on our reasoning, of which decision is nonetheless outside of the granted Authority and Power. Does that mean we will be cast aside? Perhaps Jesus will remove us from office? Break our legs? No. Repentance and our “motive” will tell the story.
Peter wanted things to be right; but he made the mistake of using his natural reasoning to determine the definition of “Right” and “Right” in the eyes of Jesus at that time, was to Tarry until the Power from on High could connect to the granted Authority.
In Mark 16:14 Jesus “upbraided the disciples with their unbelief” because of their hardness of heart. In the very next verse He says, “Go ye into all the world” which is the same thing as we found in Acts 1:8… but didn’t He just upbraid them for their unbelief? Yes, but then He says “Go,” sending these unbelieving people out to preach? Who has heard of such a thing?” How many apostles were of the Rock at that time? There were the eleven unbelieving ones, being upbraided. Did Jesus know they would fall into unbelief? Yes; but the lesson is for us, since we find that the rebuke cured the unbelief of the disciples. How did He upbraid them? He told them the things which follow those who believe; and even if these eleven didn’t believe, someone out there would.
The Process of the Name had to begin with these disciples. The water baptism in the Name of Jesus means that someone who has the Authority in the Body is the only one who can baptize others into the Body. Therefore, the only leadership in the Body at that time was these eleven; the Covenant was being tested. Jesus needed them to build the Rock, so He could build the Church. If they remained in the house and died of old age, all would be lost. Could Jesus do it all over again? No, the Cross was once and no one, not even Jesus can crucify Christ twice.
Then Jesus opened the entire matter….that, if someone is baptized into the Body and they continue to believe, then the phrase, “Shall be saved” will apply to them; however, if they are baptized into the Body, yet fail to continue to believe, they shall be damned. That was Motivation; and Mark ends up showing how the signs followed the disciples, which in turn also shows that they had repented and believed.
If nothing else, it shows how unbelief and belief are a matter of choice. The disciples allowed unbelief to enter in, yet Jesus didn’t tell them, “Well boys, now you’ve gone and done it, since unbelief has entered I must go and find some new apostles.” No; He gave them the command. Why? He did so because of Covenant. They made the commitment; Jesus was then keeping His side, even if they were slipping from theirs. This also shows that Jesus didn’t have other disciples tucked away somewhere; it was centered on the eleven. Also, Jesus didn’t make them believe since it was their side of the Covenant to believe. If we are in a state of unbelief, we have made the choice “not to believe,” which means, we can make the choice to believe.
How about Paul going to Jerusalem? Do we find Authority in that mistake? Yes, when Paul got to Jerusalem, where was the Holy Ghost? The Holy Ghost was not with Paul since the Holy Ghost told him not to go; so by going anyway, how could the Holy Ghost honor his decision? One thing was for sure, Grace was not Paul’s to cast away or give up based on his selfless act. Paul was not wicked, nor was he attempting to twist grace into lasciviousness; rather, he believed that the Rapture was near and he was willing to give up his place in the First Resurrection for his Jewish brothers. However, although he preached, no one came to the Lord. If any were to come to the Lord, they were not going to come through the preaching of Paul.
People of Authority, Under Authority: When the Holy Ghost tells us something, and we cast it off, we can’t expect the Holy Ghost to honor our rejection of Authority. If we are a people of Authority, we are also under Authority; and we must obey, if we want to remain as a people of Authority. The night following, Paul repented and then the Lord came to him, telling him about going to Rome. Some of Paul’s best teachings came after that event and what appeared to be evil, God was able to turn to Good for our benefit.
“The Power from on high” carried more than the ability to speak in other tongues; in truth, the speaking was merely a “sign” of the experience. Not to say it’s any the less, only that it wasn’t the entire purpose. Tongues and prophesy are signs showing that the Token from God has been planted; it’s an assurance of the Seed being in place. The 120 could have stayed in the upper room to enjoy the moment; but they didn’t. They seized the moment; and as a result, the Body grew by 3,000 in one day.
“In The Name of Jesus”: How often have we said, “In the Name of Jesus”? What are we saying? In the Power of Jesus? No, the metaphor “Name” means Authority; we are speaking as members of the Body of Christ. The Unction is upon us and therefore the call to be Witnesses of Jesus is our purpose, so is it? The disciples, before the Cross went out and preached, cast out devils, healed the sick; but it would take the Power from on High before they could be Witnesses (Acts 1:6-8). They had to have that very same Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead in order to have a position to speak of the Cross and Resurrection.
The Church is built by Jesus on the Rock; we however, cast the net and build the Rock. Jude tells us, “And of some have compassion making a difference, and others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.” (Jude 22-23). When we cast the Net, we get some good fish and some bad. Does that give us the right to cast the bad back into the Sea? No; once they enter the Body they have the same opportunity as anyone else, but that doesn’t mean we sit refusing to cast the net. There is a procedure for exposure and correction, one that falls within Authority.
Gates of Hell: If Jesus said that, “The gates of hell shall not prevail” why does it appear that a majority of the seven churches not only have the gates prevailing, but some were even promoting them? Well, Jesus said He would build His Church on the Rock; thus we have two things, the Church and the Rock. The Rock as we have found is Christ or the Body as Paul defines it; yet within the Body we find “churches many,” but “upon the Rock” there is only “One Church.” Jesus never said that the gates will not come against the Body or the Church, only that they would not prevail; and He limited the “shall not” to an “it” and not a “them.”
The gates of hell refer to death and division; gates are not offensive, unless you take them off the hinge and beat someone with them. The gates Jesus talks about are big, very big; they were used to separate the people outside the city from those within, showing a form of division. Have the gates prevailed in the Body? Yes. Have they in the Church? Not at all. We can focus on the Body but forget it will be Broken; but the Church will not.
What about the Authority over the Body? Are there examples or teachings in that area? Yes; Paul gives us many and one is basically metaphoric, but being metaphoric it can be misinterpreted.
Paul used metaphors and allegories in many of his letters. For instance, the metaphor “head” refers to Authority while the metaphor “horn” refers to Power. We will be able to add to our metaphor list from First Corinthians 11. First Corinthians 11:1 says, “Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.” Paul isn’t telling us to follow him since that would be a violation of the command of Jesus, “Follow Me.” Paul is telling us to look at him and only see how he follows Jesus, then use that example as we follow Jesus. This is for the individual, yet some of us follow leaders; but the command is, “to Follow Jesus.” In essence, we walk with Paul as Paul walks, rather than place him between us and God.
Then Paul gets into an area that could be misconstrued to mean a “husband and wife” alone; but if that is the case, then the entire teaching removes widows, single women, and single men. Paul just told us to Follow Jesus; thus the concept is a mystery regarding Christ and the Church, but in First Corinthians 11 it is leadership and the congregation.
Going further, it would appear as if Paul is building some sort of monster, taking the head from a woman, and putting it on a man? Not so, these are metaphors and teachings regarding Authority in the gathering and the responsibilities thereof. If we keep the context in line with Authority, these verses make sense, bringing clarity to the phrase, “Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law. (I Cor 14:34). If the Law of Moses was nailed to the Cross, how can Paul bring it back? This same Paul told the Galatians that circumcision and keeping days as outlined in the Law, were not only wrong, but would cause the Galatians to fall from Grace, yet he tells the Corinthians to do just that? It just doesn’t fit. Also, look at how he said, “There is neither male nor female in Christ,” but then he turns right around and says there is. These verses in Corinthians go much further than gender, connecting to the proper use of Authority. The most obvious is how the women are to remain silent, but if their “head” is the man and the face is on the head, with the mouth on the face, then it’s the “head” that must remain silent. Must be more to it, Amen?
Paul begins by telling us that Christ is the “head” of every man, which is our first clue (I Cor 11:3). The metaphor Head pointing to Authority helps us, since Jesus is the “Head” of the Body. The man isn’t Christ; his head (Authority) is. Then Paul tells us that the “head” of the woman is the man; thus the woman isn’t the man, her head is. Then the “head” of Christ is God. Each of these speaks of Authority, not Power and certainly not power to dominate, or control. Back in Matthew Jesus said that the Name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost was now the Name of Jesus; Paul is saying the same. The Anointing or Unction over the Body is the Authority granted the Body; but that Authority is under the Authority of the Name of Jesus.
Next Paul talks about the “covering” and how it relates to the “head.” The first aspect of “covering” is not a good covering, rather it’s some form of separation, something that is artificial, or not conducive to the granted Authority of Christ over the Body. If leadership places a carnal Yoke between Christ (authority of the Body) and God they have hindered not only the Authority but the Anointing. In the case of the Corinthians, the problem was remaining carnal, which caused division and strife. The proper “covering” is seen in the metaphor “hair” which relates to the anointing or something that is not artificial.
This is an important issue since some of us think that the Anointing comes with Power; but we find it comes with the Authority. The yoke was destroyed because of the Anointing; thus the yoke was destroyed so the Anointing could be applied, granting us Authority. Then we Tarry for the Power. For some reason some in the Body think that the anointing broke the yoke; but Isaiah 10:27 gives us a progression: first the burden shall be taken away from off the shoulder (government) and the yoke from the neck, which relates to our study here in Corinthians, so the anointing can flow from the Head to the Body. The government is on the shoulder of Jesus, it’s between the Head and Body, it is not the Head, but between. If the government (leadership or husband) puts a Yoke on the Neck, it has placed something restrictive between the Head and God, separating them, and hindering the flow from the Head to the Body.
The Yoke is at the Neck, which connects the Head to the Body; if the Yoke is broken, the connection between the Head and Body flow without restriction. The rest of Isaiah 10:27 tell us, “and the yoke shall be destroyed because of the anointing.” It doesn’t say “by the anointing”; rather the Yoke must be destroyed to allow the anointing to flow from the Head through the Neck, past the Shoulder to the Body.
When each of us as individuals came to Jesus, the Yoke was destroyed to grant us the anointing, placing us in a position to have the Spirit. However, here in Corinthians, we’re talking about the shoulder; thus this has nothing to do with our personal relationship with Jesus. It does have to do with the congregational gathering. We’re “not to forsake the gathering,” but the purpose of gathering is to exhort one another; and here we find that there can be a hindrance to that purpose, one so great that it will also hinder the Holy Spirit in each member of the congregation. The premise of the women learning at home has to be a clue; they are getting nothing in the gathering. If the leadership (husband) has hindered the flow of authority, the women (congregation) must remain silent. The connection between prayer and prophesy from chapter 11 to chapter 14 has to be made, or we lose the importance of the teaching.
Authority is then linked to the anointing; but what else? Great Faith. When Jesus heard the Centurion say, “I am a man of authority, and am subject to authority,” the knowledge of how Authority operates was considered Great Faith. Faith being projected from the now, shows us our knowledge of Authority places our faith in the right direction.
This teaching in First Corinthians instructs us on the importance of Authority and how we can have Power, but lack Authority or misuse Authority, ending without Power. We will have the rhetoric, sermons that are moving; but the people are still gaining nothing. At first the leadership blames the people and might think, “dumb people aren’t getting it”; but Paul is showing that if the leadership has allowed the traditions of men, carnal viewpoints, or anything outside of the granted Authority to Yoke the flow, then the people are kept in a silent state. Authority is “granted permission to speak,” and the Power behind the words brings the effectiveness; thus without Authority, the words fall to the ground.
Basis of Order: Authority and Power combined, is the basis of Order; without Order, we can’t function in the Power with effectiveness. The context begins to open up when we see the metaphor Head as Authority and how a False Covering produces a separation between Authority granted and Authority received. When we add the metaphor “Hair,” we find that the Authority and the Anointing are linked. Placing the metaphor together we find that the man as the husband is the leader of the congregation, with the wife seen as the congregation. The leaders have Christ as their head, the congregation has the leaders; but that is only in the gathering, not in the individual lives of the members. The leaders have a two-fold responsibility: as “husbands” they must make sure they have no covering on their Head (Christ), but as individuals they must be covered by the Unction.
The Covering: We must keep this in context; and this isn’t talking about our relationship with Jesus. It refers to the gatherings in the Body or how the Body operates in “the assembling of one another.” This same context was seen in First Corinthians 10:17as the Body and it continues into chapter 11. The leader praying or prophesying with a false covering between his head (Christ) and God dishonors his Head (Christ). This doesn’t say they can’t pray or prophesy; rather, it means that if they have allowed a false covering to separate or interfere when they do pray or prophesy they dishonor Christ.
The separating covering can be many things, such as Old Covenant deeds, self-righteousness, pride, self-enhancing motives, a love for power, no true concern or love for people, fables, deeds of the flesh, carnal ordinances, filthy lucre, teaching the traditions of men as doctrine, taking the oversight of the congregation by constraint, or some other out of order hindrance. On the same note, if they make sure there is no false covering separating them from Christ then they can Pray and Prophesy in abundance, bringing Honor to Christ (I Cor 11:4).
The leader should not cover his Head (Authority, Christ), for “he is the image and glory of God” (I Cor 11:7). Wait!! Go back! The head of Christ is God, but here it’s the “image” of God. Christ is the image and glory of God; but the congregation becomes the glory of the leader. Prior we saw that the leader can dishonor their Head, and the result is that the congregation will be in shame. However, if the Leader has the glory, it will reflect on the congregation. The leader may think that the fault lies with the congregation; but Paul describes the congregation as a reflection of the glory presented to them. This same context is seen between a “husband and wife”; yet, that is also a mystery concerning Christ and the Church (Eph 5:32).
The authority granted in marriage is seen as the husband loving his wife, as Christ loved the Church and having given Himself for it. It is also seen that the wife must submit, as unto the Lord (Eph 5:21-22). For some reason we can preach “Love one another” and they all yell “Amen!!” or we might preach “Submit one to another” and hear “Preach it!” But when it comes to, “Husbands love your wives and wives, submit to your husbands,” we hear, “Hang that idiot, vote him out!! Out we say, out!!!!” That still relates to Authority. Why does the husband have an example, but not the wife? The husband has the example of Christ’s love for the Church, but the wife doesn’t. Why? Wait! Maybe she does; because if we keep everything in context we find, that as the husband loves, so will the wife submit and as the wife submits, so will the husband love. It’s the same concept we find here; the glory is reflective.
If the husband fails to submit to the Lord, what example does the wife have? If the husband is so carnal that he can’t understand the type and manner of love Jesus has for the Church, how can he love his wife? This leadership and congregation concept of husband and wife must be kept in the context, or else how can the two be one?
When the husband loves his wife as Christ loves the Church, the wife has no problem in submitting; that is, if he truly lives by his words. That was the case in Corinth; the Leaders were to be the example as they are today. But, if they hold fables, anger, are full of pride, ego and arrogance, the congregation will reflect those very traits. If the leadership teaches traditions of men as doctrine, the congregation will receive it as doctrine.
What if we know it’s wrong? What if we see that something is completely out of order? What do we, as the congregation do? Pray the jerk down? Vote him out? Cast stones of theological abuse at these leaders? No; we are to “remain silent.” Why? The leaders don’t work for us; they are responsible to the Authority over them. As a congregation we are bound, but not as individuals. The context is still the gathering; thus Paul tells us to go home to learn and pray. If we have to go home to learn, surely we didn’t gain a thing in the gathering.
In our prayer closet we can pray for the leaders to be enlightened or for God to send a prophet to bring clarity or exposure or for the Holy Ghost to intervene by bringing correction unto perfection. Whatever, we find, if we are bound in the gathering, we can’t pray of prophesy. This is interesting since the two signs of having the Spirit are seen in Corinthians, as praying and prophesying. If the leadership (husband, or head of the wife) has used a false covering, we as the wife (congregation) must remain as if shaven, or void of the anointing (hair). It remains very clear then, that the congregation must remain silent, yet they are the ones losing in this.
The Long, Flowing Hair: For this reason Paul rebukes the carnal Corinthian leadership, telling them that the congregation must remain silent as under the Law. Why? The Corinthian leadership had separated themselves from Christ, “they are yet carnal and act as mere men.” The Law of Moses was designed for carnal-minded people, since it has carnal ordinances. If the carnal mind cannot understand spiritual matters, how then can they follow the Law of the Spirit? They can’t. That was the point. They misused the authority granted, limiting the congregation; but is it right? No. Should not the Woman have long flowing hair? Sure. But if her head is supposed to be “the husband,” who then, should have the hair? If the man by nature should have short hair and his head is Christ, who then, is supposed to have the short hair?
Paul ends his teaching by saying, “Now in this that I declare unto you I praise you not, that ye come together not for the better, but for the worse.” (I Cor 11:17). This is still connected to the prior verses; thus we’re not talking about the husband and wife as genders, but about Authority. Back in First Corinthians 10, Paul talked about the Cup and Bread; and then when we get to 11:20 where he goes right back to the Cup and Bread. Order is found in Communion, that place of remembrance, repentance and restoration. The cure for out of order Authority is found at the Table of the Lord, a lesson in and of itself.
This concept of the Body in Unity without hindrances is something which Paul taught more than once. Can the hand say, “Because I’m not the foot” that it is not of the Body? No; can the eye say, “I don’t like the hand, thus it’s not of the Body”? No, we cannot say this. Jesus put us in the Body as He sees fit; it’s His Body, but there are responsibilities for those of us in the Body.
Doma: The Leadership gift is known by us as the Greek word “Doma”; and the Doma gift is not Grace, rather the Offices are presents to the Body, sent to assist those who are in the Body. The five- fold ministry cannot save anyone; it was not designed to. Rather the Authority is specific (Eph 4:11-12). However, if one of those leaders places or holds some self-importance with: the Law of Moses, fables, carnal endeavors, personal agendas lacking Godly authority, or some other hindrance between their head (Christ), and God….then they have put the yoke right back on the Neck, placing undue burdens on the shoulders. The Yoke restricts flow which involves anything not conducive to the nature of Christ.
An understanding of the differences between Authority and Power helps us in our quest to be all Jesus said we can be. We may hear, “Go!” and ourselves… run out the door, failing to hear the instructions to “Tarry.” It’s the Power that backs up the Authority; but it is Authority that gives the Power full operational ability. Selah.
Note: The use of SOZO Bible Study Lessons, Newsletters or Short Studies (written/penned by Pastor G. Evan Newmyer as scribe and author, prior to his passing from this world) has been given to Ann M. Wolf by written permission from the author, as was customarily granted to alumni of the Sozo Bible Institute. This limited permission is given under clear agreement to never “charge” specific amounts for the Lessons with the intention of obtaining specific profits, but rather to share the material with others as the Spirit leads, for the purpose of “edification and encouragement,” on a free will offering basis, and while honoring the biblical principal to “teach the truth in love.” We ask then, that the desires of the original scribe (Rev. Newmyer) be respected; therefore the material can be shared among those who are dedicated in their study of the Bible, but shared freely on an offering basis and with respect to the copyright laws of the land and states. All rights are reserved. Read More.
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King James Version – KJV: For greater understanding of these commentaries, please use the Authorized Version of the King James Bible for confirming the Scripture passages mentioned. Please see the article, “Why KJV” by Ann M. Wolf for information regarding why we use KJV. Thank you for visiting our Sozo Short Bible Studies area.