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Summary: We as we continue our study from Ephesians today we want to examine the great expectation God has given us to Respect Authority.

Respect Authority

Ephesians 6:1-9

Great Expectations

Matthew Sullivan

You can tell what we’re going through when you come over to our house and check out the bookshelf. We’ve got James Dobson’s entire library: “Dare to Discipline”, “The Strong Willed Child”; “Parenting isn’t for Cowards.” I can’t tell you that I’ve actually read them all! We’ve got others, “How to Make Your Kids Mind, Without Losing Yours”; and (my favorite title) “You Can’t Make Me!” written by a self-professed & recovering strong willed child.

Get an idea of what life is like at our house these days? We’re trying to be good parents for our boys, and what we’re finding is that there are some challenges! I came across this list of what another parent had learned . . .

1) There is no such thing as child proofing your home. 2) Baseballs make marks on the ceiling. 3) You should not throw baseballs up when the ceiling fan is on. 4) A ceiling fan can hit a baseball a long way. 5) The glass in windows, even double pane ones, is

not strong enough to stop a baseball that has been hit by a ceiling fan. 6) When you hear the toilet flush and the words “Uh-oh”, it’s already too late. 7) A six year old can start a fire with a flint rock even though a thirty six year old man says they can only do that in

the movies. 8) If you use a waterbed as home plate while wearing baseball shoes, it does not leak – it explodes. 9) A king size waterbed holds enough water to fill a 2000 square foot house 4 inches deep.

What is it about going against rules? I mean even a child does this. You say don’t even think about eating that candy before lunch. Before that they may not have even considered eating the candy but now it’s all they can think about. I remember when we were youngsters me, my brother had some friends over to send the night. It was a weekend so our parents didn’t worry about us staying up as long as we kept the notice down and behaved ourselves. Well we got to wrestling around and got loud and woke my dad up. He came down stairs really angry. He said “If I hear another peep out of you, you’re going to get it.” He got half way back up the stairs and guess what the first sound out of my brothers mouth was, PEEP. Dad heard him and it was not good! Why is that we are so prone to rebelling against authority.

We as we continue our study from Ephesians today we want to examine the great expectation God has given us to Respect Authority. As you open your Bibles today To Ephesians 6 I want us to look at what Paul has to say to Christian’s in Ephesus about respecting authority. Remember Paul has been teaching this entire time that Christians are to think and behave different then the world and different then we did before coming to Christ. We are not doing this in order to gain salvation because salvation is a gif but we are changed because Christ saved us. We are also behaving differently in order to make a difference in the world. Last week our key verse in our relationships was verse 21. It says, “Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.” This certainly applies to dealing with authority.

If we are to think and act differently it is not hard to see what we should not do. As you look at society we see problem marriages, rebellious kids, employers and employees often seeking new ways to avoid strikes. Paul solution seems to be a new heart of submission. That does not come easy for any of us.

In America today we do not like authority very much. In fact, we enjoy going against the grain and bucking the system. We love to challenge those who are in authority positions over us. But throughout the Bible we are encouraged to respect authority, rather than to fight it.

There are five different types of authority spoken of in the Bible: Divine authority - this is the authority of God. Jesus said, “All authority in heaven and on earth had been given to Him.” Civil authority – this refers to government authorities. Romans chapter 13 teaches us how we are under them and are to submit to them. Church authority – Hebrews 13 talks about submitting to your church leaders.

Our text today focuses on the final two authorities, which are Parental and Vocational.

Children Obey Parents

Ephesians 6:1 – 3, “1Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 2"Honor your father and mother"—which is the first commandment with a promise— 3"that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”

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