Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Them Which Have The Rule Over You: Divine Authority

 Temple Baptist Church - 12-30-2020

Hebrews 13:7




A.  Tonight, I want to continue to explore the biblical relationship of the pastor to the local church.  We looked at:


1.  The Pastor – God’s Gift to the Local Church.


2.  The Dual Obligations of the Pastor and the Local Church.


B.  Tonight, I want to look at the word “rule.”  What does it mean when the pastor is to rule over the flock or local church?  We need to remember that God is a God of order! 


1 Corinthians 14:40  Let all things be done decently and in order.


C.  I have heard the saying, “Anything with two heads is a freak and will normally die.”  Thus, the local church.  If there are more than one in charge, the church will normally implode to some degree.


D.  The word “rule” in all its different forms is used 259x in 247 verses in your Bible.  Because of this fact, you do not want me to study them all tonight!  God established divine authority in all things that He did. 


1.  The Authority of God – we are all accountable to God!


2.  The Authority in marriage – the man.


3.  The Authority in the Nation of Israel – the Priesthood and kings.


4.  The Authority in government – God set up government and commanded obedience.


5.  The Authority of the local church – The Lord Jesus Christ and the pastor He sends.


E.    All of us are to be under authority of some type and human nature rebels against it. 


F.  First, I want to apply a couple principles of Biblical Hermeneutics.


1.  First Mention - Genesis 1:16-18  And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also.  (17)  And God set them in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth,  (18)  And to rule over the day and over the night, and to divide the light from the darkness: and God saw that it was good.


The sun, moon, and stars were given for benefit of those under them.  Three main reasons are for them is to give:


a)  Sun – to give Light –Man is work in the day – the pastor is to guide the work.


b)  Moon – to give Comfort – a light in the darkness of this world – the pastor is to give comfort.


c)  Stars – to give Guidance – the pastor is to guide you right.


2.  Last Mention - Revelation 19:15-16  And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.  (16)  And he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.


Divine Authority (the Word of God - out of His mouth) and Strict Adherence (Authority - a rod of iron).


G.  How should a pastor rule over the flock and individuals in a spiritual manner that is consistent with the Word of God? 


1.  That is the “resting place” or “mid-point” of a pendulum’s swing.  The pendulum’s swings far to the left and far to the right but finds its balance in the middle. 


2.  To the far to the left and the people must rule themselves; to far to the right and the pastor becomes a dictator.


1.  Ruling right must be done justly and in the fear of God.


2 Samuel 23:3  The God of Israel said, the Rock of Israel spake to me, He that ruleth over men must be just, ruling in the fear of God.


a.  Just – to be right; to be moral.


b.  In the fear of God – moral reverence; in the fear of the Lord.


2.  Ruling right must be done in equality. 


Romans 2:11  For there is no respect of persons with God.


James 2:9  But if ye have respect to persons, ye commit sin, and are convinced of the law as transgressors.


3.  Ruling right must be done in compassion.


1 Peter 3:8  Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous:


4.  Ruling right must be done in realization.


1 Peter 5:2-4  Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;  (3)  Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.  (4)  And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away. 


A pastor must have the spiritual maturity (not a novice), wisdom, and boldness (taking the oversight thereof - “the flock of God”). 


The “flock of God” must have the spiritual maturity, wisdom, and meekness to allow the pastor to do such!

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