Friday, July 27, 2007

authority

There are three things we sometimes lump under that one umbrella we call authority. There's actual authority, which God gives according to his pleasure; there's respect, which people give to one another; and there's power, which people take for themselves.
 
Sometimes these line up, but not always. You'll remember that Jesus but lacked earthly power and often missed the respect of people around him. It did nothing to affect his authority to perform miracles, forgive sin, or speak the truth with power. Similarly, men like Al Capone have had a great deal of power, but they were pretending to authority that had never been given them and, in the end, they often discover that they really don't have the respect they think they do.

Pat Robertson has the respect of many evangelicals and Pentecostals because of the man he was and the things he has done in the past -- though you'll note that this has been eroded greatly in the last several years -- but he lacks any substantial authority.

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