Summary: God wants each of us to exercise biblical authority; but before we can exercise authority we must be UNDER authority.
THE KEY TO EXERCISING BIBLICAL AUTHORITY
Submit. It is a word that is distained by so many people.
No one wants to submit to anybody. Many people treat submission much like the little boy who was told repeatedly by his mother to sit down on the seat in church. When he was threatened to received the hand of knowledge on the seat of learning, little Johnny finally sat down. He crossed his arms and whispered to his mom,
I’m sitting down on the outside, but standing up on the inside.’
It’s no secret, that submission is not a virtue that is held by too many people in Canada or America.
When was the last time you saw a movie where the hero was known for submitting to authority. No, the heros of todays generation, are those who turn their heads to authority. People who display a rebellious attitude are elevated as models to be emulated.
The irony is that even some Christians have the idea that they can exercise authority without submitting to anybody; whether it be to the government, police, teachers, employers, or marriage partners or in the church.
P.P. God wants each of us to exercise biblical authority; but before we can exercise authority we must be UNDER authority.
The central section of Peters letter ( 2:11-3:12) emphasizes SUBMISSION in the life of a believer.
It goes without saying that this is an unpopular subject in our culture. People want authority and the right to exercise authority, but they do not want to be under authority.
God’s word teaches, that this just is not possible.
The key to exercising biblical authority is tied to our willingness to live under the authorities God has placed over our lives.
In this section, Peter applies the theme of submission to the life of a believer as a citizen ( 2:11-17); an employee ( 2:18-25); to marriage ( 3:1-7) and as a member of the body of Christ ( 3:8-12)
Now, let’s be clear about one thing. Submission IS NOT slavery or subjugation.. Warren Weirsbe writes it is
‘Simply the recognition of God’s authority in our lives.’
God’s word shows us how God has established the home, government, and the church and HE has the right to determine how these bodies will operate.
From the beginning of the fall, man has gone to great lengths to avoid this life freeing truth.
Satan’s offer to Adam and Eve was freedom without authority, and it resulted in banishment and death. They lost both their freedom and authority.
The prodigal son thought freedom could be found in leaving the security of his fathers house. When he stepped out from under the authority of his father, the son traded true freedom for poverty, and bondage to sin. Freedom only came when he yielded to His fathers will.
Peter shares three excellent motives for submitting to authority and living dedicated, obedient Christian lives.
1. MY LIFE IS BEING WATCHED ( 2:11-12)
11Beloved, I urge you(A) as sojourners and exiles(B) to abstain from the passions of the flesh,(C) which wage war against your soul. 12(D) Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers,(E) they may see your good deeds and glorify God on(F) the day of visitation.