We come back to the Scripture we looked at yesterday to examine the second trait that Diotrephes failed in--recognizing and submitting to God ordained authority. “I have written something to the church, but Diotrephes…does not acknowledge our authority” (3 John 9).
Notice that I have referred to this authority as “God-ordained” as opposed to ‘authority imposed by man’. There is a big difference. It is very clear throughout Scripture that God gave authority to certain individuals to carry out His will:
· The twelve disciples – Matthew 10:1; Luke 9:1
· Rulers and governments – John 19:10-11; Romans 13:1-2
· Husband and wife – 1 Corinthians 7:4
· Parents – Ephesians 6:1-3
· Ministers of the Gospel – Titus 2:15
· Leaders and shepherds in the church – Hebrews 13:17
For Diotrephes to not acknowledge authority in the apostles was to invite failure in his ministry. That coupled with “putting himself first” was a disaster. We must remember that God places authority in certain individuals for our protection. Submitting to that authority will bring blessing and deeper understanding of God’s way in our lives, even if we do not understand the wisdom behind the authority.
If you are resisting authority in someone where God has placed it, you are resisting God and His plan. Put aside your fears, submit to God, and you will see growth and victory in your life.
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