This week, guest speaker Pastor Rob Sparrow brings our message on authority, specifically Biblical authority.
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it's a pleasure and an honor to be here with you all i want you to know that your reputation precedes you uh i was at a pastor's meeting just recently and uh a lot none of the pastors here were able to be at that meeting but pastors were bragging about the work that's being done in c3 it was a pastor that was new to the area and he was speaking about c3 and about how your efforts to help some of the people in the community have really made a difference and an impact in their lives c3 also has made an impact in my life and also my wife jill's life our staff's lives as well we want to thank you guys for that we feel like we're at home we feel like we're amongst family it's a pleasure and an honor to give pastor jean and i'm gonna say it pastor heather i know that some of us won't like she probably wouldn't like that if i said that but uh i know her weakness it's dinosaurs she said that in a sermon a couple of passages uh let that go in a sermon a couple weeks ago uh what i want to speak to you about this morning i think is of vital importance to the body of christ it's something that is life-changing it's something that was life-changing to me when i first came to christ i was a radical atheist i didn't believe in a god i didn't believe that there was god about 28 years old i came and i had an encounter with god i was dying and i uh i saw a light and i went in was going to the light and i thought to myself wow i'm finally glad that life is over life is full of pain life is full of heartache uh what the voice said to me was go back and i was like no way i'm staying here i'm happy here but the the voice which i know today was god i'd like to say that i changed my life radically but i didn't at that moment when i came back i awoke to consciousness again i remember the voice speaking to me and saying that i had a mission for you to still accomplish here on the face of the earth i said to god that when i did get it saved that i was going to be as radical for him as i was for the world i was going to give him all of what i gave my energy as far and my efforts and all those things to the world i was going to give that more to god so what i what i want to talk to you this morning about is authority i want to talk to you about authority i want to talk to you about biblical authority i want you to go to with me to matthew 24 verse 10. this concept changed my leadership this concept changed my life uh because in the world rebellion is a virtue people like in the world almost like make rebellion like it's a good thing uh rebellion to me is what and where i was and i want to i wanted to help to share with you this morning how important it is for us to be under biblical authority it says this in the end times and this is what we're in we're in the end times right now we're in the end of the end times the end times began when jesus took the cross of calvary the divine exchange took place when he stepped into taking on the curse for us so that we could walk in a blessing so that he could take sickness and infirmity upon himself so that we can walk in divine health so that we he could take on sin so that we can take on the freedom that christ paid for us there was the end times began but it's still continuing in the church age i know pastor gene has done an amazing job he's an amazing teacher and he's an amazing preacher the church age is still continuing until that day that whole period is called the end times we're in the end times and this is what it says about the end times in matthew chapter 24 verse 10. it says and then many shall be offended you can see people getting offended all over the place you can see people getting offended because of opinions that they have with one another relationships being broken and fractured and they shall betray one another that's an important word betray betray implies that a person was in relationship with somebody else before so there are going to be many that betray one another and they shall hate one another and many false prophets shall arise and deceive many and because iniquity shall abound the love of many shall wax cold circle that word iniquity in your bible highlight it in your app see the word iniquity actually means lawlessness it comes from the greek word anomia it means the absence of the law absence of rule absence of order absence of authority see when i was unsaved i had an absence of authority i was my own authority i did what i wanted in the book of judges it tells us that the the people in the time of the judges they did what was right according to their own eyes everybody did what they thought was okay for themselves but there is an authority that i have you have we have is born again bloodborne children of the most high god that we submit to his authority and his authority he gives to us in his word so sometimes shockingly i don't know i'm being honest with you there have been times where in the bible that god has said things that i don't like i mean let's be honest has god ever said something to you that you don't like i mean i really started reading the bible i'm like i don't like a lot of this stuff i don't really want to do this but this is what authority means and i want you to know i want you to kind of if you would take some notes in our church we take some notes i'm actually blessed this morning uh our church is uh doing the two services we actually do two services uh and so they're they're over there doing that but i encourage our church to take notes i encourage you to take some notes because there's been too many times where i walked out of the service and i'm like wow that was really good what the pastor said or the preacher said but i i don't remember it i forgot it so instead we want to make sure we take some notes and this is what authority is to me it's the right to make a decision it's a right to give instruction it's a right to give direction it's also the right to enforce obedience and authority has become a bad word in the world today people think hey some people have good authorities and some people have bad authorities but authority has been delegated by god it says to us that all authority is from him so in the end times there's going to be a lot of lawlessness there's going to be a lot of disorder what is antithetical to lawlessness what is antithetical to a disorder what is antithetical to that what is the polar opposite to those things law order authority god wants you to have greater authority and this is what i learned i learned that god wants me to be under authority so that i can have authority and that he can increase the authority that he's given to me into you he wants to increase your authority he wants to increase the realm that he has given to you so that it can be expanded he wants to expand your 10 pegs and your borders and he wants to give you more not so that you just have more but so that you have more to advance his kingdom and to be a blessing to people that are around you so god is entrusting to us remember where does all authority come from god all right so let's go to first john chapter 3 verse 4 and i want to prove that to you lawlessness is sin lawlessness is sin when i'm doing my own thing i had to realize that it was sin it's miss sin is missing the mark it comes from the greek word hamartia we're missing the mark i was missing the mark when i wasn't submitting to my authorities i was missing the mark jill and i i want to share with you this is that people ask us all the time how do you how have you done such a an amazing work i'm like first of all it wasn't me it was the lord it wasn't jill it was the lord it wasn't us it was the lord people say well you know what there's 18 integrity homes in estero fort myers san carlos bonita springs the church has grown how did all this happen in a very short period of time i mean we've been in ministry for over 20 years but how did this happen in a very short period of time well it's because we're under authority we're under authority we follow the direction and i tell you this is that god will give you more authority if you stay under authority there are too many people that they have the attitude well i'm going to do my own thing i'm going to do what i want to do nobody can tell me what to do that's where i was many years ago i was like well nobody's going to tell me what to do somebody's going to tell you what to do if you got a ring on somebody's telling you what to do thank you sister i appreciate that we're all gonna and this is what i learned as a pastor either your parents are gonna tell you what to do your pastor's going to tell you what to do your teacher will tell you what to do i go to minister i've been ministering in the gels for 20 years in the prisons well the correctional facility will tell you what to do somebody somewhere along the line is going to tell us what to do jill and i are blessed because this is what we sowed to our authority we sowed obedience we sowed submission submission is not subjection family submission i want you to know this always comes willingly and a husband and a wife in the marriage people are like well i'm not going to submit to anybody i want to tell you this is that there isn't a woman alive that doesn't want to submit to a man that is fully on fire for god a woman was created to follow the man as he submitted to god willingly going after god there isn't a woman alive listen to many women there was a woman that said to me i would give anything and they were very wealthy i would give anything i'd give it all away if my husband would just submit to the lord i was like wow the desperation jill and i are blessed because we sowed faithfulness and on and there was times where my authority my spiritual authority told me things i didn't agree with actually a lot of times but i had to choose at that moment just like joshua joshua chose joshua was told that that he can go into the promised land and moses makes a big mistake he listens to the 10 spies that deliver an evil report what's an evil report an evil report is anything but what god says so he delivers the 10 spies deliver an evil report moses listens and this is the amazing thing about joshua joshua obeys moses and the mistake i didn't say sin i said a mistake some people in the body of christ so like well i'll follow the pastor as long as he doesn't ever make a mistake some people i've been in churches i remember a lady she came to me she's like well i haven't tithed in two months because i wanted to to make you know that i am upset with you i was like lady that's control and manipulation that's witchcraft you don't withhold your tithe actually she gave me the check i slayed it back to her i said you need to put that into the door i remember because you know what your heart is not right you you you're doing this unto the lord as an act of worship it's not for me it's for him we're blessed because we sowed that authority now people come we have such loyal and faithful people that serve our sister was just sharing that uh we have men that if we call in pastors and so many faithful people people remark because there's pastors that have been pastoring for 30 years but yet they submit to jill and i in the direction that we're going in as god has called us into to have that role in integrity church i want you i want that for you i want you to be blessed i want you to be blessed this is if we if we sow submission if we so honor if we sow respect and authority to god then you're going to reap it we're going to reap it in our families in our marriages in your leadership in your own ministry let's go to romans chapter 13 verse 1. i know that i've spoken i've been a pastor i never decided hey one day i'm going to be a pastor actually uh my story and pastor jean story are very similar i took a 50 000 a year paid decrease the first year i went into ministry 20 years ago i was like wow you know but is it the lord or not and the lord he's the authority in romans chapter 13 verse 1 it says this let every soul be subject submit who potasso is the greek word so so be subject unto the higher powers for there is no power but of god the powers that be are ordained of god god has put people into place into position especially in the body of christ in romans 13 2 it says whosoever therefore resists the power or resists the authority resist the ordinance of god and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation they're going to receive the consequences of their own disobedience there are times where uh people have been ordained and put into place and uh they're not where they're supposed to be hupo tasso is the greek word for subject and this is what it means it's a military word is that every person is in their place every part is in their place every person is there nobody is awol absent without leave because you know what every part matters everybody's contribution makes a difference every part doing their part so that the kingdom can be advanced you know in this statement that we're talking about about military rank and being in our place there have been times as a church let's put in the beginning of the church jill and i there wasn't somebody at the door the greeter i want you to know this is probably the most important position in the church if i could be anywhere i would be at the place greeting everybody that's the first impression for the body of christ to people every person is important the sound man is important there's been times where thank you for doing a great job john thank you guys but you know because sometimes the only time you hear from uh uh about the the sound man or the person on the tech i was one of those people the only time you hear anything is when something goes wrong but thank you guys for doing what you do and thank you for being here early and dustin thank you for being here and you know during the week and making the sacrifices everything that you do all during the week sets it up because the parts that are sometimes the most valuable of the parts are not seen sometimes people think the per the person that's seen is the most valuable no no no no we're all valuable everything that we do is an act of worship so it says in the scriptures a word is a word there's a word that's spoken of often i thought well you know what's the most important thing in the gospel is it discipleship and i'm a discipleship person i'm about training people and discipling them 265 times the word disciple is used in the bible is it believer does god want believers i think it's used five times christian was a derogatory term it was just meant as like a knock against the believers that were found they called followers of the way that's used i think three times do you know what's used 7 800 and times in the bible what word is used it's is it love it's lord lord he is lord what does that mean it means absolute and final authority it means that i ought not to have any opinion but what my lord tells me to speak and to share this morning this message is not my message i'm just a vessel i want you to forgive me who i i am i'm a nobody but when i'm attached to him just like you we can do anything my my determination in that song i said this before that he had that song nobody i want to be a nobody that tells everybody and anybody about somebody and that somebody is my lord and savior jesus christ i know that's for you too as well so that word 7836 times is used lord he's trying to get across us that he's the authority think about this now jesus the son of god what did he say when he's on the face of the earth he said i do nothing but what i see myself do no the father do so jesus was a man the son of god fully man fully god under submission to the father's will man that's powerful so if we will follow the example that jesus said we will submit to our authority our spiritual authorities and and we'll follow their example it says in genesis chapter 1 verse 28 we need to know this because this is what's going to be we're going to be challenged with the original mandate that was given to adam and adam was somebody that had a delegated authority and he messed it up he messed it up he abused the authority and yes people can abuse authority that doesn't make god bad that just means that man falls short it says in genesis chapter 1 verse 28 it says and god blessed them and said unto them be fruitful i have that highlighted in my bible be fruitful and multiply and replenish the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the fowl of the air and every over every other living thing upon the earth replenish be fruitful multiply all of those words are about increase god wants increase in his kingdom matthew 25 he wants you to increase in your realm he has given to you a realm he has given you dominion a place a territory this is what the word dominion and it means it means it means a place of authority a realm that god has given to you into either the kingdom mandate is to bring increase somebody who is a surgeon and actually actually an amazing surgeon in this area if i told you his name you'd be like oh he's a but he came to me one day he was a he's a member of our church and he said you know what rob really cancer really is it's a cell doing its own thing i was like whoa man that's amazing you know so so me doing my own thing i would become a cancer in the body god wants me to be under authority following the direction so the reason why jill and i were reap such honor and such respect is because when we were serving we would show honor and respect towards our authority there was as long as they didn't ask us to do anything that wasn't sin as long as pastor gene asked if i was a member of this church as long as pastor gene asked me to do something that wasn't sin or violated my conscience i'd be there and do it because i'm meant to submit and to follow and to to uh be a part of and to uplift his arms and her and pastor heather's arms i don't want to be doing my own thing i want to be doing his thing you want to do hi you want to do his thing that's why you're here this morning you want to see god increase in your life you want to see god increase in his region in this area and i tell you he is i tell you he is we've all had bad authorities but you know what you learn sometimes from having a bad authority so you what you learn is this is i'm not going to do that i'm not going to abuse the authority that god gives to me i'm going to be faithful with that authority i'm going to be a good example because you know what there's been some bad examples it's cliche for pastors to run away with a worship leader it's cliche in the body of christ but you know what so what we want to do is we want to be a good example to the people in the body right we want to show we want to wear authority well we want to wear authority well so what's the difference between dominion and authority dominion is this because that's what god called you to god called you to have dominion brother called you to that there's a realm a territory that you are called to have so this is what it's like dominion is i wrote it down for you if we could put that up there dominion is a territorial power assigned by god it is the area of ownership or greatest stewardship it is a realm or jurisdiction a police officer has a jurisdiction so if he's operating in his jurisdiction he has authority but if he's in another jurisdiction he doesn't have authority he has no power to make decisions give instruction if he's not in his area of authority i have a lot of authority outside of in different areas but i come here i'm submitted to passage passages mourns me between this speaker and the speaker i'm going to say within that speaker pastor gene wants me to speak for 30 minutes or less i'm going to speak for 30 minutes left it's not a move of god for me to go for an hour and a half and disregard the authority that's resisting the authority i'm going to follow the instructions that are given to me why as an act of worship to the father as an act of worship and not be rebellious not not do my own thing if somebody what's your name brother tyler sorry for pointing out that but you just you just stand out to me so tyler somebody you you you you have a home right okay sometimes the the bank lets us think we have a home but that's where i am the bank lets me think i have a home i have a mortgage on it so but if somebody came to tyler's home and tyler's wife says i wanted this color let's say what's the color that you like ma'am miss pink okay that's my wife my wife sorry for putting but if i if i'm the painter and somebody tyler tells me paint it pink because my wife wants it pink but i and i show up that day and i'm like well you know what i don't really like the way that tyler decided the color i'm gonna paint it blue i like blue i'm never going to be invited to paint tyler's house again in fact tyler might have a conversation with me after the house is painted he might be like but that's his realm that's his territory that's dominion you i would be a person who is delegated authority if he gave me the key to the house to paint the house the color that he wanted he has dominion i would have authority the right to make decisions as long as they lined up with what tyler wanted that's the difference between dominion and authority and and you can only give authority to somebody if you have dominion you can't give you can't give authority to somebody unless you have dominion so as believers if we're faithful with the area of dominion god will bring increase to that being faithful with it we have we have dominion finances we have dominion be good stewards over and so into the kingdom and god will bring increase to it so i want to be faithful to that i want to be faithful i want you we want to be faithful to that we want to understand it i love what watchmen knees said watchmen knee how many of you are familiar with watchmen knee by raise their hands okay well watchman knee was a mega church pastor before they had mega churches watchmen knee was somebody who was really used by god he was the keynote speaker for a major convention or conference and he was he was brought up and he was told and he walked into the room and some because he was wearing a tuxedo and he had a bow tie somebody thought well you know what he must be one of the waiters so he tells the one of the maitre d's tells him he says hey you take that table over there watch my knee he took the table and he brought it over there he said this is what watchman nee said this is why god promoted him so much he says when i walk into a room i immediately find out who is in authority in that room and i submit to that authority so he walked into the room later on they called up the keynote speaker and he was delivering the message the guy was can you imagine being that guy he was like this i caught he's like i'm thinking i lost my job but watchmen knee wasn't doing it because he that person was his boss he has a boss curios kairios lord he was doing is an act of worship let's go on and let's find some examples as we look at some of the lives of the men that made good were good examples of bad examples soul was once the anointed of the lord but he lost his kingdom the reason why he lost his kingdom is in first samuel chapter 13 and verse 15 is that he was not supposed to offer the sacrifices but seoul decided because the people were putting pressure on him he's like well i'm gonna do it because i felt like i needed to do it and samuel came to seoul and told him you lost your authority you lost the kingdom that's what i want to guard us that's what the lord wants to guard us he wants to protect our authority joshua was allowed to enter into the promised land later on there was only two people that entered into the promised land it wasn't moses moses got to see it he didn't enter in joshua and caleb were the ones that delivered the report that they could go in and they could take the land so they got blessed because of daniel was put into position see as believers can we submit to even a pagan boss can god do we trust god enough this is i want to trust god we want to trust god enough to even use a pagan boss daniel did he didn't have just one pagan king two pagan kings he had three pagan kings and because he submitted to them and he didn't compromise his values as he was god promoted him so much so that he became second in command over egypt i say that for this house i say that there's great increase in promotion for those people that will submit to godly authority i say that god is not done with you god wants to shock and amaze the philistines the unbelievers with the goodness of god as he pours it out upon your life but he's not going to give it to somebody who's going to paint his house a different color he's going to give it to the person who is going to be faithful to follow his word and to submit willingly to the godly authority that god has put in place there's a difference now family between leading and ruling and we're going to put those up for you so i said that a little bit earlier we'll keep that slide up authority is basically the right to make a decision the right to give instruction the right to enforce obedience so if we have a child you know what enforcing obedience is like you know leading is this as leading as telling your son i'm not putting one of my sons out there i want to talk selling your son clean your room you're supposed to clean your room at this time you're supposed to do certain chores this is that's leading ruling is this you're doing it now not later now anybody ever been there come on anybody any don't leave me out to dry come on we're getting have you ever had to okay so praise god thank you sister thank you over there so that's the difference between leading and ruling leading is this is the direction that we're going to go in and we're going to follow in and then there's also consequences the body of christ at our church we we want to help the hurting just like your church and we've that's why we started integrity homes you know that's why we started the 18 location but we learned this is that we can absorb the consequences of other people's bad behavior and we got to allow them to deal with some of those consequences sometimes and that's the way that the lord is he says this he says if you want to follow the straight narrow path in matthew chapter 7 verse 13 and 14 he says broad is the road and and the way that leads to destruction but straight narrow is the path that's saying the straight and narrow actually came from the bible so if you want to follow the straight narrow path you're going to do what i asked you to do i like this is me family i like being in his will better than being him out in my own will as i've suffered the consequences of that so the difference between leading a ruling is this is that he tells me the direction to go in and i make it easy this is this is me and i say this in my church all the time god tells me if he tells me jump i say how high i don't need to ask questions jill and i we left a very a very large church where we were senior pastors over to come out to naples seven years ago and it was it was basically the size of a bible study there was about 12 people in the middle school but god has brought increase and you know we look back and see all the miracles but had we we would have aborted the plan of god and i want to ask you not to abort the plan of god by leaning on your own understanding follow him when he tells you in hebrews chapter 13 verse 17 there's a scripture that i i very i hold very well how can i speak about these things because i was once a rebel i was once the person like mark chapter five nobody's gonna tell me what to do but then god got a hold of me how could i not this is me how could we not submit to a god that would die for us he gave it all it says in romans 8 32 how shall he not with him freely give us all things that's your god he that spared not his own son but delivered him up for a soul how shall we not with him freely he how shall he not give us all things there he's not holding out one of the biggest lies that we can believe is that that's the original lie god's holding out that's why adam went to the tree of knowledge of good and evil god's not holding out he's waiting he's saying son daughter can i trust you with the authority that i want to give to you can i trust you in the realm can i trust you and he i want you and i know the answer is yes how many of you can say i'm ready for some increase god by raising your hands how many people write if you if you're not going to do it now you're not going to do it later how many of you ready for some increase come on okay i'll have three let's try it some people's arms don't work let's swing it let's get into it all right on on three just help me out you know it's like help the fat guy out one two if you're ready for increase go like this there's a testimony oh praise god there we go all across the sanctuary hebrews 13 17 it says this obey them that rule over you and submit that word is a bad word in the world today submit means this no it doesn't mean subjugate doesn't mean beat down or oppress it means that we recognize that somebody has a best interests at heart and we willingly follow them we put our will aside because we know that that person has our best interests at heart and i i can say this to you as a pastor who's pastored in this area for 20 years and jill and i we know all the big names in churchianity there you're going to be you're going to be you would be hard-pressed to tell us a person's name in churchianity that we don't know we met him i've been the driver for some of the biggies i've drove i've driven them from the the place when i was a sir i know what they're like behind the scenes and i want you to know that you have a gift in pastor gene and pastor heather you have a gift in them and i want to encourage you because their hearts are pure will they make mistakes yes am i asking you to follow what to say no but i am am i asking you to uplift their arms yes i am because there's a kingdom cause that's bigger than us and when you sow that you're going to reap that brother you're going to reap that it says in hebrews 13 17 it says obey them that have rule over you and submit yourselves willingly follow them because you know that they have your best interests at heart but they watch for your souls as they that must give account that they may do with joy and not with grief for that is unprofitable for you the lord asked me and i'm going to be closing in a minute i want to make sure i stick within my time i did if i went over i apologize did i stay within my 30 minutes there all right praise god is it he's not in his head is it really or am i over this is the question that the lord asked me rob are you making it a joy for your pastor that's what that scripture says i want to ask you brother go to your pastor and ask him is it a joy for you to lead me that's one of the ways that we're going to be promoted in the kingdom of god god is going to bring increase i live for increase in the body of christ and for revival to take place in this area i don't care how many people come to our church we tell people all the time what we want is the move of god you want the move of god we want to be a part of something bigger than just singing a couple songs and getting a short word and then going home and living life the the way that the rest of the world does i don't want that you don't want that what we want is the move of god let me pray over your family it's been an honor and a privilege to be here with you father i thank you lord for disciples i thank you father for people lord that are hungry for the truth lord not just hungry to hear it but to live it lord father that you can entrust to them greater authority lord the right to make decisions to give instruction to enforce obedience so that they're ready for greater dominion and ownership in their areas of influence in their areas of jurisdiction in the realm that you have entrusted to them why because lord you're not giving it to them for them you're giving it to them to advance your kingdom lord i thank you lord that as i speak over every person that's listening lord that their allegiance is to you you are lord over our lives the absolute and final authority i bless this house i declare lord that this time next year it will be radically different lord father that supernatural blessings will overtake your people lord and father that great increase would come to this ministry lord i declare lord that its reputation would extend lord and father that you would increase the ten pegs and the borders of this ministry and every family that's represented here for your glory and for your honor in jesus name we pray amen love you guys thank you for the honor and the privilege do so you