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Oilfield Workers Sharing Christ Around the World


Photo by Jon Tyson

By Mike Chaffin

 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Matthew 28:18

When I was young, parents taught us to respect authority. Lack of respect was condemned and usually punished. Ultimately the lack of respect for authority, and the rule of law, leads to all kinds of crimes. Bringing us into the theological; crimes are sins.

Jesus is the ultimate authority. Sadly, man has been in rebellion since Adam and Eve ate from the tree. The first sin committed was not listening to the authority of God’s Word and being duped by the devil into sinning. Afterwards, the punishment was banishment from the Garden of Eden and the loss of direct communion with the Father.

But God had a plan to rescue mankind from our selfishness, and hinted at it in Genesis,

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. 15 And I will put enmity Between you and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel.” Genesis 3:14-15

Centuries later, God chose to rescue the Israelites from slavery and give them the land promised to Abraham as their inheritance. But, on the way, rebellion to God’s authority resulted in their wandering in the Wilderness for forty years with everyone over the age of twenty dying.

After the next generation conquered the land, a later generation forgot God’s good provision and authority and fell into idolatry and all kinds of sin. This is pointed out in Judges closing words,

 In those days there was no king in Israel; everyone did what was right in his own eyes. Judges 21:25

There was no king because they were to look to God for leadership, direction, protection, and provision. They failed to follow authority and were constantly beleaguered with wars. They began to believe an earthly king was the answer instead of a spiritual awakening.

Finally, their lack of respect for authority got the Israelites banished from the promised land. The northern tribes never got their land back. Judah was punished seventy years for their sin or rebellion and idolatry.

Once they were back in the land, they had to relearn how to honor God. The temple was rebuilt as were synagogues in the villages for people to study God’s Word. Jewish elders called Pharisees and Sadduccees were to teach people how to respect God’s authority, but they twisted it into a spiderweb of laws that no one could follow. Jesus condemned their attempt to usurp God’s written Word.

27 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which indeed appear beautiful outwardly, but inside are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness. 28 Even so you also outwardly appear righteous to men, but inside you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness. Matthew 23:27-28

But God made a way of escape from the sin that so easily besets us. We can turn away from false teachers who want to fool us. He replaces our attitude of rebellion with desire to live in service to Jesus.

For God so loved the world that he gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. John 3:16

 God loved us so much He gave Jesus all authority. He also made Him our mediator. His blood covers us from all our sins. He defends us from sin and Satan. Appeal to His authority. Peace and joy can replace temptation, fear, and rebellion.

Prayer:  Dear Lord, you have all authority. I ask for forgiveness of my sins and a fresh infilling of the Holy Spirit. I know I can only succeed when I am attached to you and under your authority. In Jesus’ name, amen.


* There is a website that conducted a search for Bible verses. They compiled a list of the verses in order of the magnitude of hits they got in their search. Some of these verses qualify as ‘people’s favorites’, while others might be on the list because they are some of the most important and most teachable words of God

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