Spiritual Authorities

Do you know that there are other spiritual authorities besides God? Have you ever wondered why God’s very first commandment (Ex. 20:3) to the Israelites was to not follow other gods? God knew that the angels he kicked out of heaven were going to pretend to be gods (1 Cor. 10:20), and I tend to think that he established this rule so that we would not, knowingly or unknowingly, submit ourselves to demons and end up in bondage as a result. It’s important for everyone, and especially followers of Jesus, to understand that the spiritual realm is real, and that demonic forces are actively working to confuse and disrupt what God wants to do in our lives (Eph. 6:12). We have to be constantly on guard, and we have to be aware of the schemes of these forces so that we do not fall into their traps. I wrote about discernment in my last blog, because I have come to realize that if we don’t have the spiritual gift of discernment, we can easily end up in a situation where an unhealthy spiritual authority gains influence in our lives. And once that influence is established, it can distort what God is speaking to us, and keep us from fulfilling our purpose. Those we submit ourselves to have authority over our lives. This can be an overt action, such as submitting to a Godly leader, which is a good thing to do. And it can also be a situation where someone unknowingly submits to a demonic authority through their actions, such as participating with things that are not of God, and this can lead to deception that is difficult to identify. One of the major problems with deception is that, when you are deceived, you don’t know that you are deceived. You need someone in your life who can let you know that something may be wrong. I heard someone say once that we all need a Paul in our life who can let us know when we cross the line. This is incredibly important, and I am personally intentional about giving people with good discernment the permission to speak into my life and to let me know if I ever end up in one of these traps. Having a discerning spiritual authority in your life who can mentor you, point you in the right direction, and shift your perspective when needed, is an important and healthy practice. This is something we highly suggest everyone put into their lives, along with cultivating a great relationship with Holy Spirit so he can lead you into all truth and guide your steps. This can be a heavy topic, and it is sometimes easier to understand with a visual, so we created this chart to help you visualize how spiritual authorities can have positive or negative influences in your life; feel free to share it with others.

(click image to download PDF)

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