The Authority of Scripture
Two battleships assigned to the training squadron had been at sea on maneuvers in heavy weather for several days. I was serving on the lead battleship and was on watch on the bridge as night fell. The visibility was poor with patchy fog, so the captain remained on the bridge keeping an eye on all activities.
Shortly after dark, the lookout on the wing reported, "Light, bearing on the starboard bow."
"Is it steady or moving astern?" the captain called out.
The lookout replied, "Steady, Captain," which meant we were on a dangerous collision course with that ship.
The captain then called to the signalman, "Signal that ship: 'We are on a collision course, advise you change course twenty degrees.'"
Back came the signal, "Advisable for you to change course twenty degrees."
The captain said, "Send: "I'm a captain, change course twenty degrees.'"
"I'm a seaman second-class," came the reply. "You had better change course twenty degrees."
By that time the captain was furious. He spat out, "Send: 'I'm a battleship. Change course twenty degrees.'"
Back came the flashing light, "I'm a lighthouse."
We changed course.
Last week my sermon was “On Purpose.” I hope that you’ve contemplated what I feel God has spoken to us over the past few weeks. As we continue in this thought, I hope you realize this morning the Authority we have when we stand on and put our faith in God’s spoken and inspired Word. Let’s start this journey today.
Matthew 28:18-20 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Notice Jesus says he has ALL AUTHORITY in Heaven and on earth. What we realize, though, is that he does not exercise that absolute authority at all times. Obedience to his spoken word is what engages his Kingship. And remember a point I try and make often: obedience to God’s word and the results thereof does not automatically qualify you as His child. That only brings further foundation to his wisdom and faithfulness. So how do we combat this idea that God is only love and being a good person is enough to warrant Heaven?
Romans 10:14-15 How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news.”
The feet of those who bring good news… What kind of news do you carry with you? We are talking about, if you haven’t gathered this yet, evangelism. How can they call, believe, hear, or preach? Those God has called has also been predestined. We were born with the knowledge of God built into us. And God has ignited his word in us who have accepted Jesus into our hearts.
1 Peter 1:23 For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God.
So how do we initiate this power planted deep within? We understand the Authority of Scripture. We use the Word of God against the devices of the enemy. We combat, ON PURPOSE, demonic lies and tactics only with scripture and not with human reasoning. We acknowledge the fact that, if His words are eternal, more of his word within us brings us closer to the heart of God.
Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.
2 Timothy 3:16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Scripture is the ultimate authority!!! God’s word supersedes anything spoken, believed, or implied. The Bible holds all wisdom, all knowledge, and all truth that will break through the strongholds of the enemy and bring life into a dying body. The inspired word of God is only found and founded within the leather-bound pages of this book.
Let me bring a thought to you about this… There was another story I read that was good about authority. Aristotle was a great thinker of his time, around 400bc. He believed that if two objects were dropped with different weights, the heavier object would hit the ground faster. This idea was not tested, but believed for almost 2000 years. Galileo climbed the Leaning Tower of Pisa in 1589 with learned professors at the base of the structure to observe and record his theory. He dropped a 10 lbs and a 1 lb stone at the same time from the top and they both hit the ground at the same exact instant. But, because the power of believe and tradition was so strong, the professors standing at the bottom and had a hands-on view of the experiment, still refused to believe what they saw. They chose to ignore what they saw as true, physical evidence, and believe someone else’s untested and unproved theory!!! They believed a lie!!! Do you know anyone who fits that description?
Revelation 1:2 who testifies to everything he saw—that is, the word of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ.
We must testify to those things that God reveals to you through his word. We must reflect a testimony that can only be attributed to the changing and regenerating power of Jesus Christ.
Matthew 4:4 Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.
Here’s what I want you to see and grab a hold of today. Here is an element that is not often enough tapped into. God’s word has to be activated. We activate his word by hearing it. Our job begins by being a living testimony. But the Word of God trumps any human reasoning we can muster. (go back and reread Heb 4:12) What better way to hear the word than by reading it for yourself outloud?
Romans 10:17 So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
Romans 10:10b with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
Demons will stand against human words. Ask the seven sons of Sceva. But, they cannot utter one syllable against the Authority of God’s Word. God’s word softens hearts, out-thinks minds, and reveals actions.
God inspired scripture On Purpose. His intentions were that we use proper authority to see His Kingdom advanced. His desire is that we trust what has been laid out of us, so that his plan will be accomplished. The Spirit that lives within us would so better connect and apply our witness and testimony if only we would begin leaning on the teachings that will hold true for eternity.
What scripture(s) do you need to stand on and speak out-loud today so that a stronghold can be broken down through the Authority of God’s Word?