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Are You A Leader Under Authority? (Part 1)
Stats: 7,344 words / Reading Time: 36.72 mins

Published: Wednesday 16th October 2019

Are You A Leader Under Authority? (Part 1) is read 290 times on CentreNDL.org 290

Are You A Leader Under Authority? (Part 1)

Principles of Authority in Leadership

This morning, there is a question that is being asked. I am sure we understand that from the introductory prayer that we had, we are made to understand that it is possible for God to answer our questions. But the question is being thrown to us this morning and I want us to interrogate our spirit and ourselves to find answer. The question is: Are You A Leader Under Authority?

 

Listen to MP3 Podcast: ARE YOU A LEADER UNDER AUTHORITY?

 

In the book of Habakkuk that we read, Habakkuk 2 from verse1, the Bible says: "I will stand my watch and set myself on the rampant and watch to see what he will say to me and what I will answer when I am corrected then the Lord answered me and said write the vision." The Lord! The word "Lord" acknowledges the positioning, the authority over his life. It was not "and my friend answered or my husband answered or my neighbor answered." It was "the Lord answered and said." That's to show that He was a man under the authority of God. So the question that is being thrown to us this morning is are we leaders under authority?

 

We are at the Leadership Fellowship, and so we must understand that the question raised this morning is a leadership question. For more understanding, we will start our meditation from the book of Luke 7:1-10. I will begin my reading from verse 1 and I hope to stop at verse 10. Luke 7:1-10, the Bible says:

 

"Now when He concluded all His sayings in the hearing of the people, He entered Capernaum. And a certain centurion's servant, who was dear to him, was sick and ready to die. So when he heard about Jesus, he sent elders of the Jews to Him, pleading with Him to come and heal his servant. And when they came to Jesus, they begged Him earnestly, saying that the one for whom He should do this was deserving, "for he loves our nation, and has built us a synagogue." Then Jesus went with them. And when He was already not far from the house, the centurion sent friends to Him, saying to Him, Lord! (and I want us to note that word "Lord." We are getting that word for the second time this morning, we saw it in Habakkuk and we are seeing it now). It says "Lord, do not trouble Yourself, for I am not worthy that You should enter under my roof. Therefore I did not even think myself worthy to come to you. But say the word and my servant will be healed."

 

"And the Lord answered and said", just as we saw in Habakkuk. So, divine response in the case of Habakkuk was by the word of the Lord. When God responded to his question and the yearning of his heart, God responded by speaking to him. And in this circumstance too, the centurion asked the Lord, he said "just say the word." Respond to the yearning of my heart by speaking to the situation. Let us continue. It says:

 

"But say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I also am a man placed under authority, having soldiers under me. And I say to 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 these things, He marveled at him, and turned around and said to the crowd that followed Him, "I say to you, I have not found such great faith, not even in Israel!" And those who were sent, returning to the house, found the servant well who had been sick."

Luke 7:1-10

 

I am sure we still remember what the centurion said to Jesus, he said to Him in verse 7 "but say the word and my servant would be healed. Verse 10 And those who were sent, returning to the house, found the servant well who had been sick." And Jesus called what transpired great faith. May the Lord bless the reading of His word in our heart in Jesus name. The word we are noting is are you a leader under authority? And I would have loved to begin this discussion by asking us: what is our understanding about who a leader is? From that we can then go on to ask; is such a leader expected to be under authority or to be without authority? You know, another word for under is to be within.

 

For all of us now we are under this roof, because we are under this roof, we are also within this roof or within this building. So, you are either within the building or without the building, you are either under the building or you are outside or without the building. So, we must note that there is a link between under and within. And the opposite of within is without. So we want to know from our understanding of who a leader is, if it is necessary for one that is called a leader to be within authority or without authority. So, when we talk about a leader, the question we are asking is, or the thing we are referring to is who a person is. We are talking about who you are. I am sure you know that there are key words in the title: Are You A Leader Under Authority?

 

So when you pick the word or the phrase; a leader, we are referring to who you are, or who a person is. It is about who you are. Another thing that we must note is "under authority" which we have seen from verse 1 to verse 10 of Luke 7 that we read earlier. It says "for I am also a man under authority." Under authority connote where you are. The first thing that we saw is a leader, which shows who you are, or who a person is. Aside who you are; there is also where you are. And in the course of this meeting we are going to see more illustrations that talks about where a leader is.

 

So, we are noting who you are, where you are, and the next thing that we saw is when the centurion said to Jesus say the word! So what does it mean to say the word? So when we are talking about say the word, in this context, we are talking about what you do. My servant is sick, I want you to come and minister to him. However I don't want you to come under my roof, I want you to say the word. I want you to do something. What you do is in what you say. As soon as you have spoken to my situation, you have done something about my situation. That was what that imply.

 

Another phrase that we must note is "great faith." In verse 9 Jesus said "And I say to you I have not found such great faith not even in Israel." That deals with what you have. The first thing that we saw, is who you are, where you are, and then we saw again what you do, when he said say the word. We have seen who you are, talking about a leader. Who you are. Another thing that we have seeing is where you are under authority. You know when a lady or a young boy hides under a mango tree, when they ask him, "Samuel, where are you?" I am under the mango tree. So when you are under authority, it talks about where you are. And so we also saw say the word, which refers to what you do. You are not there idling or an onlooker, you are speaking. Say the word!  

 

And the next thing is "great faith" which talks about what you have. You may not have certain things, you may not have what you need, however, there are certain things that you need to have for you to have what you need. I am sure we understand. In this context, the man needed healing for his servant. However he had great faith. So with what he had he got what he wanted. Do we understand? Jesus said "I have not found such a great faith not even in  Israel." So he had a great faith.

 

Then the last thing that we must note before we really move on is wellness. You know we said a leader under authority, say the word, great faith, the last thing is wellness. The man said, say the word, in verse 7 of Luke chapter 7. The concluding line said "but say the word and my servant will be healed" My servant will be well. Do what you have to do so that my servant would have an outcome or an experience that we desire. And so when we are talking about wellness, we are talking about who or where you must be.

 

Currently you are under; that is a place. Currently you are a leader, currently what you do is that you speak. Another thing is that you have great faith in addition to all that, there is a person and a place you must be. Do we note that? For that centurion, what he wanted the servant to be, was to be healed. He wanted to also be, the centurion who had servants who were healthy but towards that he needed to have great faith. So, he was a leader; talking about you are, he was under authority, where he was, and talking about what you do, he had the capacity to speak. He said "For I say to one go and he goes." Do we understand? And another thing is what you have. Jesus himself said here he had great faith. Another thing the last point is wellness. Who you must be and where you must be.

 

In the nut shell we are talking about a person's current state, a person's current reality and his future. There is a man you must become, there is a woman you must become, there is a place you must attain, there is a level you must attain in life, towards getting there, are you expected to be under authority or to be without authority? Towards getting there, are you expected to do something or to do nothing? Towards getting there, are you supposed to have great faith or to have no faith at all? These are the things that we are looking at and I want us to go to Psalms 91 so that we can have a general view about being a man, a woman, a leader under authority. Psalms 91, I will begin from verse 1. The Bible says:

 

"He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
2 I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress;
My God, in Him I will trust.”

3 Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler
And from the perilous pestilence.
4 He shall cover you with His feathers,
And under His wings you shall take refuge;
His truth shall be your shield and buckler.

5 You shall not be afraid of the terror by night,
Nor of the arrow that flies by day,
6 Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness,
Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.

 

 

That also shows us that without being under the shadow of the Almighty, there is literally no time that a man could say I am safe. There are dangers in the day, dangers in the night. When you can see or know what you are doing, there are dangers. When you are ignorant, there are dangers. However; the only way for you to be preserved is to be under the shadow of the Almighty. And it continues, it says

 

7 A thousand may fall at your side,
And ten thousand at your right hand;
But it shall not come near you.

 

The reason is not because you love to be saved. The reason is because of where you are. Verse one says "He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty." What is even the meaning of the Shadow of the Almighty? And a man who is not dwelling in the secret place of the most high cannot abide under the shadow. So it is that man or woman that is a person without the shadow of the Almighty. It is not automatic for everyone to be under the shadow you must first "dwell in before you can be under the shadow of." Do we understand that point?

 

Let's go again to Genesis where everything began, so that we can see the divine plan. Genesis 1:26. Are you a leader under authority? The Bible says: Then God said, "Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth." Let us make man!

 

Please I have a question. Was the one who said let us make man under the dominion of man? Let us make man in our own image and according to our own likeness. The question is: what does that even mean? Let us make man in our image, and according to our likeness. Let us make man in such a manner that the creature will be like us, would be patterned after us and will function after our order. Another way of putting it is; let us make a creature that will be like us and will be under the shadow of us. Let us make a man who will function in and by our shadow as it were. Because another word for that shadow is image. Your shadow is the reflection of your image or it is an extension of your image. When there is a great light and you have a shadow behind, it is going to be according to your image.

 

When God said let us make man in our image according to our likeness, He knew what He was saying This creature that we are creating is not going to be after any kind. It is going to be after our kind and he will function in our order. Another word we must note from that is that he will function by our command. Let us make man in our image, let him look like us, let him reflect our appearance our nature, and let him function, by our command. And we will find the examples everywhere in the Bible.

And if that man could be in our image, and if that man could function by our command, then let that man who is functioning by our command who is built in our image, let him have dominion over. So, the Genesis or the foundation of his dominion is where he is; under our command. Let me say that again. We are going to make a man in our image, and he is going to function in our likeness. As we do, he will do; as we speak, he will speak, the places we go he will go; what we talk about he will talk about, he will pattern his life according to our order. In fact, our rules will become his rules.

 

And as soon as this is a reality, he will have Dominion over. So a man who wants to have dominion over, must understand that there is a place of submission that is a necessity for that dominion over. So, the authority of Adam was sourced in God who he is patterned after. He became a leader over the earth simply because he was in the image of God and he was functioning like God. The way I put it in my note is like this. I wrote that; "made in the image and likeness of God, also connote being built under Gods authority. Given dominion over the earth also mean functioning over others by the authority that was given or by the authority of God." He is built under Gods authority, and we saw the last time; about the shadow to mean image. "He who dwells in the secret place of the most high shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty." The shadow of the Almighty was and is the image of the Almighty and it is also the authority of the Almighty.

 

So, when a man is built according to that shadow or after that shadow and he responds to the commands of the Lord, meaning that he is under the authority of the Lord, such a man is then qualified to have dominion over other things on the earth. So a man who separates himself from the shadow of the Almighty, a man who refuses to be made in the image of God, and patterning his life, his work by the word of the Lord, responding to the dictates of the Lord, such a man cannot exercise dominion on the earth.

 

I want us to see a situation where man refuses to be under the shadow of the Almighty. I am sure many of us know the story of a footballer called Neymar in PSG. He was initially in Barcelona and he was the third best player in the world for several years, until he felt he wanted to be the best player in the world. Knowing full well that the number one and number two were older than him by about five or six years, does it not mean by natural order of succession; that he was going to replace them? By natural order, year one he was number 3, again he was number 3, and your number two and one are older than you, does it not mean that you are supposed to succeed them?

 

Now he opted out. He said it publicly that "he is tired of being under the shadow of Lionel Messi." He does not want to be under his shadow. So he wants to be an entity that will also cast shadow. To cut the story short, many of us are aware that he wants to come back to that shadow now. Because that is where authority is. By the way as soon as he left that shadow, so to say; he was number three before that time; but he became somebody who was no more in the top ten in the world. The moment he left that shadow, the world football refuse to reckon with him as an authority. Why? The authority he was enjoying before, he is now without that authority.

 

There are so many things we would soon note in the course of this service. Let’s continue. I want us to go to the book of Genesis 3, let’s see a situation where man began to avoid the authority of God. Genesis 3, and I will read from verse 1.

 

Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?” 2 And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; 3 but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.’ ” 4 Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. 5 For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

 

If we jump the sequence now and go to other things in verse 8. The serpent had already said "you will be like God knowing good and evil." But see what verse 8 says: "And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden."

 

What does that even literary connote? Bible says he who dwells in the secret place of the most high shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. You cannot be under the shadow of the Almighty away from the presence of the Lord. Bible says "and they hid themselves from the presence of the Lord." So, they moved outside the shadow; that’s the meaning. Let’s continue, from verse 9: "Then the LORD God called to Adam and said to him, "Where are you?" Is

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that not the second thing we mentioned? We said first thing is who you are, the second thing is where you are. I am also a man under authority, where I am; I am under authority. And God said to Adam where are you; referring to the authority, his positioning as per the authority. Are you within the authority or are you without authority? Let’s see his response.

 

"So he said, “I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself.” 11 And He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree of which I commanded you that you should not eat?” 12 Then the man said, “The woman whom You gave to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate.” 13 And the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this you have done?” The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”

 

14 So the Lord God said to the serpent:

“Because you have done this,
You are cursed more than all cattle,
And more than every beast of the field;
On your belly you shall go,
And you shall eat dust
All the days of your life.

 

16 To the woman He said:

“I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception;
In pain you shall bring forth children;
Your desire shall be [
e]for your husband,
And he shall rule over you.”

 

17 Then to Adam He said, “Because you have heeded the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree of which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat of it’:

“Cursed is the ground for your sake;
In toil you shall eat of it
All the days of your life.

In verse 22,

 

22 Then the Lord God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of Us, to know good and evil. And now, lest he put out his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever”— 23 therefore the Lord God sent him out of the garden of Eden to till the ground from which he was taken."

 

The Lord God sent him out. Can we see the sequence? The first sequence is that man was deceived to thinking that if only he could do something, he will get out of the authority of God. He will no longer need to be under the shadow of God, but to be with God. To be in the class and level of God. There will be no difference between him and God. God will do His own; he will do his own. He will no longer be responsible to God, he will be responsible to himself. And I’m sure many us are aware, those of us have read anything about Satanism or something, one of the principles of Satanism is individualism. You are yourself. In fact, they even teach it in the USA that you are the God of yourself. So, the moment man was deceived to thinking that there is a better life outside the authority of God, He began to consider the how to get it.

See the how: God said eat of every tree except the fruit of this tree. It is like God saying "give me one out of hundred" and that one that God said you should give Him is that one that you don’t want to give him. What does that mean? Is it not rebellion? Another word is disobedience. Do this, no I cannot do it, no I will not do it. What does it show us? The moment you disobey, you are taking yourself out of the authority because authority has to do with obedience.

 

When God said don’t do something and then a man under God decides to do it. Then such a man is moving outside of the authority by his disobedience, by his rebellion. Because being under authority, the literal implication is you follow and obey. So, the devil succeeded in convincing man to refuse to follow the commands of God. And the Bible has said you are a servant to whomsoever you obey. So, they left the authority of God, and came under the authority of Satan because in reality there is no man who is without authority. That is one of the things I have realized.

 

God was the Almighty that became an entity that gave them a shadow for their covering. They decided to leave their covering but they did not leave another’s covering. Unknowingly to them, they went under the covering of Satan because immediately after then, the son of Adam decided afterwards to kill his brother, and he killed. The question is: Did God inspire the killing? God even said to him, "Sin lies at your door and its desire is to rule you, but you should rule over it." But did he rule over it? The answer is no! The reason is because he was already ruled by sin. He was already a man under the authority of sin. And the word "sin" represent a man or a creature called satan. He was already under the authority of rebellion. Devil is the master of rebellion. So, a man who listens to the devil has responded to the authority of the devil and responding to the authority of the devil gets any man outside God's authority into the devil's authority.

 

The question we are being asked is: Are You A Leader Under Authority? One of the things that I have noted, is that if anyone of anyone of us must rule over other things, or people; we must ourselves be under rule. If you must yourself command the obedience of others, you must have commandments that you follow. So, I concluded that the secret of sustained leadership is sustained or committed followership. And I want us to go John; to now see examples. John 12, I will read from 46-50. The Bible says, it was Jesus speaking; He says:

 

"I have come as a light into the world, that whoever believes in Me should not abide in darkness. 47 And if anyone hears My words and does not believe, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world but to save the world. 48 He who rejects Me, and does not receive My words, has that which judges him..."

 

Don’t forget we said, who you are, where you are, what you do, what you are. And what you do was about say the word. It was about the word. So when a leader is doing something, he is speaking a word. So, Jesus said if anyone rejects my word, it means you are rejecting my work. He says

 

"if anyone rejects my word and does not receive my words has that which judges him —the word that I have spoken will judge him in the last day. 49 For I have not spoken on My own authority; but the Father who sent Me gave Me a command, what I should say and what I should speak. 50 And I know that His command is everlasting life. Therefore, whatever I speak, just as the Father has told Me, so I speak."

 

He said "I have not spoken of my own authority." If a man has not spoken by his own authority, then it must be that he has spoken under another's authority. Is that not the meaning? So, if the Lord Jesus Christ understood the implication of functioning under authority, then we must all embrace it; knowing full well that there is no vacant man or leader anywhere. There is no man hanging anywhere, there is no leader hanging anywhere.

 

Any man, any woman is under a particular authority. There is an authority over your life whether you are aware of it or you are not aware of it. There is a command you obey, there is a command that if you don’t obey, there is an enforcement on your life. And Jesus said "I am of another’s authority." And so I want us to see another place in John 15:5. We would see three verses in this chapter. The Bible says:

 

“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, (I am sure we still remember the shadow? He who dwells, another word for dwell is to abide, he who dwells in the Secret place of the most high shall abide under the shadow) and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. For without Me you can do nothing. (Emphasis bolded) to show us that as He was under the authority of God, He was also an authority on the earth. And that’s how it is.







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