Then Jesus came to them and said, "ALL authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples . . . (Matt. 28:18-20)
"All" Authority Means ALL AuthorityGod delegated to Jesus an all-encompassing authority. No person, place, or position in heaven or earth eludes His jurisdiction, except for the Father.
Then the end will come, when he hands over the kingdom to God the Father after he has destroyed all dominion, authority and power. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For he "has put everything under his feet." Now when it says that "everything" has been put under him, it is clear that this does not include God himself, who put everything under Christ. When he has done this, then the Son himself will be made subject to him who put everything under him, so that God may be all in all. (1 Cor. 15:24-28)Since the end has not yet come, we are clearly under Jesus' all-encompassing authority. HE is the Head of the Church, not a pastor or other ministry leader.
What Part of "All" Don't We Understand?If leaders overlook the word "all," they might struggle with authority issues, vacillating between yielding to the full authority of the Lord and taking it on themselves.
Leaders do not get to pick and choose what areas to yield to Him and what to hold onto for themselves. Nobody has that right.
What Happens When ALL Authority is Not Ascribed to the Lord?Leaders with authority issues fail to model undivided devotion to the Lord as the King of Kings and Lord of Lords who deserves our full allegiance, love, and obedience all the time, in all our ways, and in all facets of our lives.
If people adapt the mindset of the leader, they too will pick and choose what they wish to obey. For many, witnessing and making disciples just might feel too uncomfortable and will thus become an area of life over which they take control rather than yielding to the Lord.
You'll find this content in the Steering the Church Toward Discipleship Leadership Guide, along with an acrostic using the word AUTHORITY with characteristics of leaders who truly believe ALL authority belongs to the Lord.
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