Summary: Consider this . . . some of the ‘objective’ standards of authority could be the sources outside of ourselves that we look to direct us . . .
Following Jesus without Denominationalism
Part 6: ‘What Many Accept as Authority in Religion’
Within the last message, I endeavored to show you three things . . .
(1) That it is through the writing of the apostles, the “apostles’ doctrine” that the LORD speaks and directs HIS church . . .
(2) That the “New Testament” is how CHRIST speaks to us today and leads us to life ever lasting . . .
(3) And that it is the “apostles’ doctrine” which ought to be our standard of authority in matters of religion, in which the Bible tells us we must “continue steadfastly” . . .
Acts 2: 42:
“And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.”
Many of people say that they accept the “apostles’ doctrine” as their authority in religion . . . yet faced with an issue in which a cherished position of view is being challenged, these same people often appeal to a source for their authority that is quite different.
And believe it or not . . . this is easy to do, and perhaps the best way to avoid this is to be aware of other sources of authority in religion.
Consider this . . . some of the ‘objective’ standards of authority could be the sources outside of ourselves that we look to direct us . . .
In that same respect, there is that which is of the ‘subjective’ authority whereas we look within ourselves for the answers we want.
In this message, I am hoping that I can briefly touch upon various ‘standards’ that people commonly turn to when faced with questions about what they believe and why they practice the things they do in religion.
(1) “Objective” standards of authority . . .
If I may indulge your attention to five quick points here, I think you might really appreciate these thoughts in regards to the standards of authority . . .
A. The Old Testament . . .
It is common for people to resort to the Old Testament to provide authority for some practice, when they can’t find authority for it in the teachings of CHRIST or HIS apostles.
A few good examples of this might be a clergy-laity system, the burning id incense, using instrumental music in worship, keeping the Sabbath, etc.
Now even though there is NOTHING wrong with these, the Old Testament was designed to be temporary, to fulfill a specific purpose and as a covenant which has been replaced by the New Covenant, aka: The New Testament.
The Old Testament was given because of transgressions, till CHRIST should come . . .
Galatians 3: 19:
“Wherefore then serveth the law? It was added because of transgressions, till the seed should come to whom the promise was made; and it was ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator.”
For those under the Law (in particularly Israel), it was a tutor designed to lead them to CHRIST . . .
Galatians 3: 24:
“Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.”
And a tutor that has been taken away . . .
Galatians 3: 25:
“But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster.”
In reality . . . those who were under the Law came to CHRIST, and they became dead to the Law . . .
Romans 7: 4:
“Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.”
As such, they were delivered from the Law . . .
Romans 7: 6:
“But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.”
As prophesied by Jeremiah, GOD has made a ‘new covenant’ to replace the ‘first covenant’ which is now obsolete . . .
Hebrews 8: 7 – 13:
“For if that first covenant had been faultless, then should no place have been sought for the second.
8 For finding fault with them, he saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah:
9 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they continued not in my covenant, and I regarded them not, saith the Lord.
10 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people: