Colossians 3:18-4:1 & Philippians 2:1-8

I have a hunch that if I were to take a poll asking for everyone's favouring biblical topic, submission and authority would score quite low on the list. 

Believe it or not, I am very excited to preach this about the spiritual discipline of submission. The topic of submission has been poorly handled and communicated and, therefore, has been hurtful to many people. It is my hope this weekend that we will gain a deeper understanding of submission from God's perspective. I believe we will all be challenged. 

In preparation for Sunday, read Colossians 3:18-4:1. Critics of the Bible point to Paul's instructions to those under authority and insist that the Bible is outdated, repressive, and even encouraging of abuse of power. But, pay special attention to Paul's instructions to those in positions of authority. Paul gave warnings to those who were in authority; this was unheard of in the ancient world. In the ancient world, husbands owned wives, slave owners could beat or kill their slaves with no repercussions, and parents could treat their children as harshly as they desired with no drawbacks. But in this passage, Paul gives warnings to those in positions of power. Paul insists that we are equal in Jesus, so although there may be different roles here on earth, we all answer to Jesus equally, so abusing power will incur the judgment of God.

Also, read Philippians 2:1-8 and John 13. Jesus is THE example of what healthy, godly authority looks like. Those in positions of authority are taught to look at how Jesus used His authority. Jesus gave up His divine attributes and took the humble position of a slave in order to reveal His love to us and save us. Jesus washed His disciples' feet, something only the lowest slaves did in New Testament times. That is what spiritual authority looks like in the kingdom. Who wouldn't want to submit to a leader who loves the way Jesus loves?

May your weekend be blessed, and may you sense the presence of Jesus as you spend time in His word and prayer. I can't wait to see you this Sunday! 

Pastor Nathan