Someone has said that wherever there is a problem in human relations, there is an “authority” problem. In the opinion of this writer, it seems that this is very true.

The time in which we live showcases the autonomy of each individual. That is, “Nobody is going to tell me what to do!” This theology was introduced into American life in the 1960s and summarized thereafter by the bumper stick “Question Authority.” The bad seed that was sown two generations ago is bringing forth worse fruit. Those in authority are now expected to negotiate on absolutes.

Parents are expected to refrain from teaching any absolutes to their children. It is said that children should make up their own mind about almost everything including what gender they are. Wives refuse to be Biblically submissive. God’s order is rejected at every level. A common teaching today, even among some Christians, is that one has no obligation to obey duly constituted authority unless that authority has earned their respect. That psychobabble which is very unbiblical has projected a whole generation into rebellion and has forced leaders to either “roll over and play dead” or become overbearing.

The whole idea of Biblical authority has been eclipsed by an overemphasis on individual liberty. This has resulted in a very obtuse view of God and His authority. May we keep in mind that when the Apostle Paul under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit wrote Romans 13, the ruler the Scripture calls a minister of God was none other than Nero, one of the most wicked men who ever lived. Therefore, if we condition our obedience on whether or not we respect a person in authority, we clearly disobey the Word of God.

This is not meant to say that leaders have a right to be irresponsible, but it is meant to say that one of the basic building blocks of our society is fractured. We must redouble our efforts to live and act within the order that God designed. To obey a bad leader (unless he requires us to sin) is better than chaos.

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