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Monday, March 21 2016

Contributor: Isekhua Evborokhai

INTRODUCTION
In the past few weeks in our study of the authority of the believer we have been considering very interesting and engaging topics. Last week we looked at one of these topics: “How to “deal” with the devil.” In last week’s study we first looked at the enemy’s subtle weapon– “unbelief & doubt". These two are the opposite of the core matter of today’s topic “Faith's Role in Authority.”

THE RELATIONSHIP
There is an important link between faith and exercising authority! The understanding of this is mostly the missing link why some Christians cannot manifest in their authority. Authority is only realized through faith in God’s Word; therefore, authority and faith must go hand in hand working together.

FAITH GIVES ACCESS TO AUTHORITY
Faith is involved in exercising spiritual authority by providing access to authority. And authority will not become a force within us until we take God‘s Word to heart and obey it—through Faith.
We can learn a lot from the story told in Mark 9:17-29 about how faith allows us to access our authority.
When the disciples came across an unusually strong demon that wouldn't budge (verse 18),
“Whenever it seizes him, it throws him to the ground. He foams at the mouth, gnashes his teeth and becomes rigid. I asked your disciples to drive out the spirit, but they could not.”

Jesus made it clear that they lacked faith by calling them faithless (verse 19).
““You unbelieving generation,” Jesus replied, “How long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you? Bring the boy to me.”

He also made it clear that some demons are so strong that a higher than usual level of faith is required to cast them out (verses 28 and 29),
“And when He had come into the house, His disciples asked Him privately, “Why could we not cast it out?” So He said to them, “This kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting.”
And that we can gain that higher level of faith through prayer and fasting (verse 29).

In Matthew 17:20 we see the same story narrated slightly differently by Matthew
"And Jesus said unto them, Because of your unbelief: for verily I say unto you, if ye have faith as a grain of mustard seed, ye shall say unto this mountain, Remove hence to yonder place; and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you. However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting."

Authority is exercised with confidence not doubt or timidity. Authority comes from the heart not from the head. Authority demonstrates and speaks in accordance or agreement with God‘s authority. It takes faith, that knows, to recognize and embrace Godly authority. Because we believe God our faith responds with boldness, righteous indignation, assertiveness, perseverance, patience, and discernment. When we do not act in authority we are not recognizing what Christ has provided us. We are being misled and deceived by religious tradition, worldly thinking, and demonic trickery.

AUTHORITY IS HINGED ON KNOWLEDGE
Our authority is dependent upon our knowledge and understanding of the situation we are in. Without knowledge, it is impossible to have faith.
In John 6:69, Peter said to the Lord: “And we have believed and know that thou art the Holy One of God.”
In 2 Timothy 1:12, Paul said
“I know him whom I have believed.”

The Samaritans told the woman who brought Christ to them,
“Now we believe, not because of thy speaking; for we have heard for ourselves, and know that this is indeed the Saviour of the world” (John 4:42).

The opposite of knowledge is ignorance; and that is a realm the enemy wants people to live in! If Satan can get us to believe that this authority was only for a certain few disciples and apostles then and not for us now, we will have doubt in exercising it. If we do not know in our hearts what God has empowered and commissioned us to do then we will miss it spending our days living far less than sons and daughters of God!

PITFALLS TO LOOK OUT FOR
• Faith Based on Manifestation
The faith of some people operate in the “sense realm” and not based on the Bible. These people believe that if they get certain manifestations, then the devil is gone. So once he knows you operate is such a realm, he tricks you with these “manifestations” but he isn't gone. He's still there but wants you to believe he is gone, and you need to know that and exercise your authority.

• Discouragement
When circumstances don't change immediately, some people become discouraged and slip back into the natural. They start talking unbelief and they defeat themselves. They give the devil dominion over them.
As Smith Wigglesworth often said, "I'm not moved by what I see. I'm not moved by what I feel. I'm moved only by what I believe." So stand your ground.

• Failing to Obey Authority
Authority operates under authority and within authorities. In Matt. 8:5-13 we read about the faith of the Centurion. Emphasis on verse 8-10
“The centurion answered and said, "Lord, I am not worthy that You should come under my roof. But only speak a word, and my servant will be healed. For I also am a man under authority, having soldiers under me. And I say to this one, Go, ‘and he goes; and to another, Come, ‘and he comes; and to my servant, Do this, ‘and he does it." When Jesus heard it, He marvelled, and said to those who followed, "Assuredly, I say to you, I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel!
The most distinguishing element of the Centurion‘s faith was his recognition of authority. Rom. 13:2 says: “Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves.”
We are being robbed from in this life if we do not from our heart understand the authority that belongs to believers. For us to operate in God‘s authority it is all related to how much we come under God‘s authority. As we live to God yielding our life to the Spirit we are coming under God‘s authority more and more. The more we submit to God‘s kingdom the more authority we‘ll exercise.

CONCLUSION
The Bible gives an interesting account that very well summarizes today’s study in Acts 19: 13-16
“Then certain of the vagabond Jews, exorcists, took upon them to call over them which had evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, we adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preacheth.  And there were seven sons of one Sceva, a Jew, and chief of the priests, which did so. And the evil spirit answered and said, Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are ye? And the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, and overcame them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.”
Faith holds an important role in exercising authority. If one does not have faith or believe that they have authority then they would not be able to exercise it. And even if they go out to “exercise authority” without faith, the devil will see through their emptiness as in the case of the sons of Sceva.

Posted by: Isekhua Evborokhai AT 05:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
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