Whose Authority are you Honoring?
Most of the religious world seems to have usurped God's authority in the Body of Christ and in effect operate as though all things do not “exist in Christ." They leave the impression that there would be no Community of the Redeemed if it were not for religion and every child of God would go wayward if it were not for their “much needed intervention.”
The religious institutional structure does not realize that if people do the “will” of God because they are coerced or expected to by religion...they are neither alive to God or His will...they are alive to the men within religion and are men-pleasers doing service as unto men.
Authority in the Community of the Redeemed is not based on rank and file, education and position, natural abilities or hierarchical structures...rather it is a patriarchal or family authority, based on spiritual maturity and a relationship of love.
Deitrich Bonhoetter puts it his way;
“Every cult of personality that emphasizes the distinguished qualities, virtues and talents of another person, even though these be of an altogether spiritual nature, is worldly and has not place in the Christian community; indeed it poisons the Christian community. The desire we so often hear expressed today for “episcopal figures,” “priestly men,” authoritarian personalities” springs frequently from a sick spiritual need for the admiration of men, for the establishment of human authority, because the genuine authority of service appears to be unimpressive.”
“Ultimately this hankering for false authority has its root in the desire to re-establish some sort of immediacy , a dependence upon human beings in the Church. Genuine authority knows that all immediacy is especially baneful in matters of authority. Genuine authority realizes that it can exist only in the service of Him who has authority....the Church does not need brilliant personalities but faithful servants of Jesus and the brethren. Not in the former but in the latter is the lack.”
Religion is more of a personality-cult centered upon “titled-positions” of the “spiritual elite” instead of the Community of the Redeemed growing up into the Head. Christ came to set us free from the deception of religion before we can be productive members in the Community of Redeemed. We must walk in the freedom of Christ to be delivered from the manipulation and control of men before we can be free from all men to truly live the gospel in the Community of Humanity.
Paul writes; Am I now currying favor with human beings or Gods? Or am I seeking to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a bond servant of Christ. (Gal. 1:10).
As long as people desire, require and aspire to receive the praise of men they can never experience or walk in the freedom of Christ.