Fear of Authority?

by Delia Messier

Several of our long-time friends believe that the ministry in God’s true Church must not have any authority over the brethren, and that “hierarchical government is evil.”

Our friends came to conclude this because of some past experiences with less than godly conduct of some “in authority.” They fear the very concept of authority in the Church of God. I must admit at one time I had similar concerns as well.

However, I saw that God gives parents authority over their children, and husbands are to have authority “over” their wives. God instituted this authority, and it is hierarchical.  I saw that this is good and necessary. I am not speaking about abuse, but the right kind of godly authority, as decreed by God.

Did I make mistakes as a parent? Yes, but this did not negate my responsibility and authority that I had been given over my children! And, most of all, studying Scriptures showed me that the ministry in God’s Church is responsible to guide, teach, encourage, admonish and even correct the brethren, when necessary, for their good and for the protection of the brethren within the Body of Christ.

I learned that, ultimately, I am submitting to Christ’s authority, and in need of putting my faith and trust in Christ.

Even today when the mere word “authority” is mentioned, I can see anger, resentment and even hostility in some. It is so sad to notice this. I pray that they will learn to put their faith and trust in Christ who is the Head of His Church, and if they could do that, there would be no more anger, resentment and hostility, and most importantly, there would be no more fear of authority!

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