Posted by: tucsonjefe | June 27, 2006

What makes us who we are: authority

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Early in my first year in bible school, I remember hearing one of the instructors praying for a student who was in a car accident.  He lifted his voice and began to speak to the student’s body and to the devil, something like, “Satan, take your hands off this child of God.  In Jesus Name, body be made whole.”  Now as a denominational person, I had never heard anything quite like that.  There was a ring of authority in his voice that caused a stirring on the inside of me.  It is the first time I can remember realizing that one of the earmarks of this “faith” crowd was the belief in the authority of the believer.  Like most folks, my position in prayer was always one of making polite, obsequious requests of God.  The idea of taking the bull by the horns and speaking directly to the offending spirit and the circumstances he caused was a little frightening, but very exhilarating.  It seemed almost sacrilegious.  In fact, it was areligious, and there is a difference.

I have come to believe that the reason many Christians are defeated in life is their refusal to stand up and fight for what God has already given them.  Jesus completed His work then sat down.  He handed His Spirit, His Name, and His Word to the Church and told them to do business “in my Name.”   Many a Christian has gone to his grave asking God to heal him.  In fact, healing is already provided and our job is to run off the thief and speak to the mountain of sickness, commanding the circumstance to change to fit the Word.  What a remarkable idea!  The problem for many of us is that this gets God off the hot seat.  We cannot fall back to the victim position of traditional Christianity.  “It must not be God’s will to heal me.”  When a prayer seems to go unanswered, it seems much easier to blame God than to search ourselves, then stand and fight.  It may be easier in the short haul, but in the long term it leads to a secret mindset that blames God for all the evil in the earth and makes Him the problem rather than the solution.  It leads to outward religiosity with a heart that is bitter against an aloof and uncaring deity.  I’ll choose to take my lumps in the battle, believing that God is on my side. 

Scripture Reading:             Mark 11:22-25 ISV  Jesus said to them, “Have faith in God!  (23)  Truly I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Be lifted up and thrown into the sea,’ if he doesn’t doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him.  (24)  That is why I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it and it will be yours.  (25)  “Whenever you stand up to pray, forgive whatever you have against anyone, so that your Father in heaven will forgive your sins.

Somebody Said:             In all affairs it’s a healthy thing now and then to hang a question mark on the things you have long taken for granted.
            — Bertrand Russell

The wonder of Mark 11:22-25 is its simplicity.  I have three things to do in my walk of faith.  I pray to my Father, speak to my problems, and forgive my brother.  If I leave one out, the three legged table crashes.  Authority is the leg most ignored.



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