Sunday, 9 June 2013

A parable on authority

There was a point on authority that I wanted to make in the last post but somehow forgot to include. So I decided to just post it here as a follow on thought in parable form.

Suppose there was a rich man who had both a cleaner and a gardener who worked for him. One day he asked the cleaner to instruct the gardener to go and pull out weeds that were growing near his roses. So the cleaner went to the gardener and relayed the message that their master had given to her. 

In this story, who carries greater authority? Well, neither. Much of Christianity though would seek to elevate the cleaner. The cleaner, recognizing her new found power over gardeners everywhere would soon start up their own "Staceys Cleaners ministries" brand. Yet in reality, both the cleaner and the gardener are of equal standing in the household.

It needs to recognized, that there was authority in the message that the cleaner carried, because it came from her master. This is how the body of Christ works. A person can carry the authority of Christ in his message or a ministry that he has been given, yet he is still only a brother among brothers. This is why we can see Peter stand up with the eleven at Pentecost and speak with such authority. Yet in the very next chapter (Acts 3) after healing a lame man he proclaims "Why do you marvel and look earnestly on us? As though we had done this by our own power or holiness?". The kind of authority displayed here needs to be recognized as it serves to build up the Kingdom of God rather than the kingdoms of men. 

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