Foundation and Authority…Whose Your Lord?
But in your hearts set Christ apart [as holy—acknowledging Him, giving Him first place in your lives] as Lord. Always be ready to give a [logical] defense to anyone who asks you to account for the hope and confident assurance [elicited by faith] that is within you, yet [do it] with gentleness and respect. 1 Peter 3:15 (AMP)
When Christ is Lord of your life, peace trumps fear. When we fear man we fear everything. When we fear God we fear only Him!
“Every motive, thought, decision, action and relationship reveals who is Lord/lord of your life and what foundation you are on.” Regardless of what you say or even act, ultimately, whoever/whatever is Lord/lord in your life will be revealed. What does your life and relationships say about your Lord/lord? Do you know who it is?
Is it Self? Money? Fame? Sex/porn? Drugs? Giving? Serving? Church? Your marriage, family, friends? Many of these things are obviously sinful and selfish but they still drive what we do in nearly every moment of our life. Others are very noble and worthwhile but to make them the foundation and authority of our life is not in keeping with God and His Word and will ultimately cost us. So because it’s that important, I ask again…
Who’s Lord/lord of your life (1 Peter 3:15)?
What comes to mind when you think of authority? For most of us it is someone or something that is in control of, or ruling over us. And our flesh doesn’t like that. That’s why Christ showed us clearly that this worldly type of thinking with regard to authority is actually the way unbelievers or sinners think about authority or lording it over others (Matthew 20:20-24).
Jesus said that true Authority comes from willfully choosing to submit, serve and love others by placing them before or above self (Matthew 20:25-27). As The Author and Lord, He taught very clearly what real Authority is to be in our lives and relationships (Matthew 20:28)…it’s not how many you have control over or even how many are following you but how many you serve. You may have many following you but according to God’s Word that doesn’t mean you are walking in authority. I can’t truly do this unless I know Christ as Savior and Lord. I can serve and lead others apart from Him but ultimately that is rooted in my flesh and what I may receive from it. Authority in Christ simply serves others for The Father’s purpose and Glory just as He did.
One more thought to help you recognize True Authority…it does not ultimately come from who the world says is in power (even though we must pray for and submit to the governing authorities in our lives and culture unless they clearly contradict God’s Word and Authority). Authority comes directly from The Author! Thus the question, “Who do you acknowledge and live for as The Author of your life?” Or once again, ‘Who’s your Lord/lord?”
This is why we can’t just live in the moment, the situation, the emotions, the desires of our flesh and this world because Christ has so much more in store if we willingly submit and surrender to Him as The Author, The Authority in our life! Lordship is essential and we all have a Lord/lord.
Why begin 2021 talking about Authority? My flesh doesn’t even like to surrender or submit to any authority. That’s just it! My flesh pushes back against any and all authority. Because of sin, my natural response pushes against even the very One who has been given all Authority (Matthew 11:27; 28:18; John 3:35; 13:3, 5; 17:2; Ephesians 1:20-21; Philippians 2:9-11)!
We must remember that we do this to our own peril and we most often do it because we see authority as the world does…”lording it over, ruling, controlling”…not only do I want to be in control in my sinful self but I also do not want someone in control of me! I want to be in control! Any of this ringing a bell? As we learned last week and earlier this is not what real Authority is at all! This is why He does not demand that we follow Him. He knows that Love must have free will and in so doing we must willingly submit to His Authority in order for His Word and will to rule in our lives. We have chosen to submit to The Father’s drawing us to Him (John 6:44) by faith through grace!
How do you perceive and live out Christ as Lord…as Author, as Authority? This makes all the difference in your life, relationships and in His influence on you, in you and through you to others. The life of worship is a life sacrificed and surrendered to Him as Authority and Lord.
In line with our focus on The Authority of The Author, Christ, I came across this in another devotional recently, “No matter what changes God has brought in you, never rely upon them, build only on a Person, the Lord Jesus Christ, and on the Spirit He gives.” Oswald Chambers
What a great summary of His Lordship in our lives…fully dependent and reliant upon Him! In all that we are, all we do, all we say, every relationship and action, we look to Christ and ask Him to teach and guide us to be His instrument, vessel and disciple and that He reigns as Lord of our lives.
Only as we abide in Christ can we do anything of eternal worth which is all that matters even as we do so in this world, sharing Truth and loving others (John 15:1-17), as The Holy Spirit flows through us (John 7:38).
This is Christ as Lord…“My determination is to be my utmost for His Highest. To get there is a question of will, not of debate nor of reasoning, but a surrender of will, an absolute and irrevocable surrender on that point. An overweening consideration for ourselves is the thing that keeps us from that decision, though we put it that we are considering others. When we consider what it will cost others if we obey the call of Jesus, we tell God He does not know what our obedience will mean. Keep to the point; He does know. Shut out every other consideration and keep yourself before God for this one thing only – My Utmost for His Highest. I am determined to be absolutely and entirely for Him and for Him alone.”— Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest (Bold emphasis mine/added)
How does Christ’s Truth and Love in our life affect our relationship with Him and others? How does His Lordship in our life impact our relationships with Him and others? Are we living according to His Truth and Love?
We are called to submit to and set apart Christ as Lord so others can know Him as well (1 Peter 3:15).
In line with God’s Word, authority and lordship are synonymous and true leadership flows from who or whatever is the authority or lord in your life. So, who or what is leading your life, your relationships, thoughts, actions, decisions…even your motives? (Matthew 6:9-10)
Something or someone is your Lord/lord and you need to be absolutely sure of who or what. Otherwise we stand at the tree of knowledge of good and evil just as Adam and Eve did are easily duped, and give into sin claiming our own “godship” or “lordship.” (Read Genesis 3:4-5)
Do you know Christ as Lord and His Word as Absolute Truth? I pray you do. If not, I pray you will.
If your foundation or authority is anything other than Christ then you will fear this world and all it offers. If He is Your Foundation, Authority and Lord you will fear only Him and the world offers nothing you need fear.
Are you fearful of anything today other than God? If you fear God, you will not fear man. If you fear man it is because you have not learned to truly fear God. “Do not be afraid” is written 365 times in Scripture…once for every day of the year! Fear God every day and you will live fearless of all else! Be encouraged in God’s Word…
“You shall fear [only] the Lord your God; and you shall serve Him [with awe-filled reverence and profound respect] and swear [oaths] by His name [alone].” Deuteronomy 6:13 (AMP)
He is with you and fear of Him is where wisdom begins…not in education or intellect but in knowing, honoring and fearing Him – Proverbs 9:10.
To fear anything else is not of Him for His Word is clear regarding the Spirit He has given to us, one of love, power and self-discipline or a sound mind. He has not given us fear or timidity so don’t let it invade your thoughts and rule over you (2 Timothy 1:7). Don’t be a slave to fear of anything in this world or the enemy…Fear God and God alone!
If your foundation and authority are not truly in Christ then you will continually give into the natural and the flesh because it is what we experience on a moment-by-moment basis in our lives…what will I eat? What to wear? How do I look? What do others think? What do I fear? And the list goes on and on. Your heart and your treasure are always in the same place (Matthew 6:19-32). Are you honest about where they both are?
Does worry over the things that naturally occur and that you naturally think about rule over you, i.e., guide your thoughts and decision-making? Or does the Truth of God’s Word and the peace that it brings reign in and through you, regardless of the circumstances or culture that we find ourselves in? Remember the natural person is a sinful person so don’t give into the natural…overcome it by faith and walk in the new, spiritual man or woman that Christ has recreated you to be (Ephesians 2:10).
Make it a great day and New Year with family and loved ones in Christ!
Love and Lordship…Food for Thought – Christ’s Lordship helps overcome my fear(s)! The key is to know and walk with Christ as Savior and LORD and the gift of faith that we’ve been given allows us to trust in His Truth and walk and act accordingly. In so doing we please God (Hebrews 11:1, 6). Seek His Kingdom and righteousness first and above all else (Matthew 6:33-34). Walk in Faith with Him above everything else as Lord in your life.
Love and Lordship…Action Item(s) –
- Choose to spend time with God in His Word and prayer every day.
- Ask The Holy Spirit to teach you and be patient.
- Ask Him to identify any fears or anxieties and replace them with His Truth.
- When you face any fear or anxiety find the promise in His Word to counter.
- As you look to His Word and away from your fears, learn to trust in His Lordship and Truth.
Love and Lordship Prayer Focus Heavenly Father, help me to understand that choosing Christ as Lord of my life allows me to fear nothing of this world but to reverently fear only You. In Jesus Name. Amen.