This morning I was listening to a podcast on my drive to work that reminded me yet again of the authority the Lord has set up for us, and our responsibility to stay under that authority. I encourage you to listen to this podcast by Tony Evans. We cannot exercise legitimate authority over what we are supposed to be over unless we learn to be under what God has put over us. If we are out of alignment with what is legitimately supposed to be over us (we rebel against His Word), then we lose heaven’s authority to be able overcome situations here on earth.
If we rebel against authority placed over us here on earth, then we can’t truly say that Jesus is our Lord. First, all authority has been given to Jesus Christ (Matt 28:18). In Scripture, the Centurion understood that Jesus was performing miracles because He was under God’s authority (Luke 7:1-10). He understood it because he was also under authority and had authority over others. We cannot have authority and power over anything unless we are submitted under Christ and all that He has placed over us.
Because most believers do not understand this principle of authority, prayers don’t get answered, victory doesn’t get achieved, power doesn’t get recognized, changes are not made, in spite of prayers being prayed — because the prayers are being prayed out of alignment.
Alignment is the key to answered prayer and spiritual authority, because it must take place before we can see God choose to intervene in our life here on earth, and put the devil under our feet. The reason is simple: if we fail to align ourselves under Christ’s authority and all authority He has placed over us, then we’re not truly under His authority and He can’t overrule us. That’s what authority provides — the ability to overrule.
We can seek human wisdom (counseling, etc.) to fix the mess we find ourselves in, but if we are out of alignment (which is being in rebellion to God’s authority) it either won’t work or won’t last. Just like a car that’s out of alignment, our lives will be shaky when we aren’t under God-ordained authority. Colossians 3 breaks down God-ordained authority.
First, whatever we do we are to do it under our Lord Jesus’s authority (Col 3:17). Then, “Wives, be subject to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.” (v 18) If, as wives, we are out of alignment with our husband’s legitimate authority, then we are out of alignment with God. Husbands are to treat their wives with equal honor so that their prayers aren’t hindered (1 Pet 3:7). The authority is laid out: “Christ is the head of every man, and the man is the head of a woman, and God is the head of Christ” (1 Cor 11:3).
Colossians goes on to say, “Children, be obedient to your parents in all things, for this is well-pleasing to the Lord.” (v 20) Biblically (not culturally), fathers are to raise their children. “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.” (Eph 6:4) The wife’s role is the helper — to fill in the gaps when the father can’t — but it is the father’s responsibility to raise their children in the discipline and instruction of the Lord, because the husband is under Christ’s authority.
No matter how hard we are praying for something that we know is in God’s will, if we aren’t getting an answer, perhaps we need to make certain we are under God’s protection. He promises that He “is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble” (Ps 46:1). He has also promised to give us “the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy” (Luke 10:19). But He first requires our submission to His authority and all authority He has placed over us.