"God has an authority structure. He always works through authority.  It is for our what…our protection" Ed Young.

Protection from what you might ask.  Dig a little deeper and you’ll find out it is about the Devil, sin, finances, ministry success, your ability to provide for your family.  There are any number of untold horrors that lurk for those who step outside God’s authority structure.  The sad reality is there isn’t much scriptural support for the concept.  Bevere attempts to use Numbers 23:23 for support for this teaching (Bevere 72).

Num 23:23  For there is no spell against Jacob,
nor is there any divination against Israel.
At this time it must be said of Jacob
and of Israel, ‘Look at what God has done!’

Here we see that God had decided to bless Hebrews in their journey and in this particular instance God wouldn’t let Balaam curse these people at this time.  God had an agenda with His people at that time and he wanted to be remembered for how he brought them through to the Promised Land.  Taking this incident and applying to every church in all time is a huge stretch.

Jesus, nor the apostles ever mention such a doctrine

  • Jesus granted the disciples over the spiritual powers of darkness (Mat 10:1)
  • Christ defeated the powers of darkness on the cross
  • Our freedom comes from being united with Christ in his death and resurrection through faith
  • The Old Testament is filled with references to curses in Israel (Psalm 109:19, Pro 3:33, Jer 11:3)
  • The church and Israel are two different things

Consider these scriptures:

2Ti 1:12  Because of this, in fact, I suffer as I do. But I am not ashamed, because I know the one in whom my faith is set and I am convinced that he is able to protect what has been entrusted to me until that day.
2Ti 1:13  Hold to the standard of sound words that you heard from me and do so with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus.
2Ti 1:14  Protect that good thing entrusted to you, through the Holy Spirit who lives within us.

2Th 3:3  But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one.

Jas 4:7 So submit to God. But resist the devil and he will flee from you.

1Pe 1:3  Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! By his great mercy he gave us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
1Pe 1:4  that is, into an inheritance imperishable, undefiled, and unfading. It is reserved in heaven for you,
1Pe 1:5  who by God’s power are protected through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

One of the great things I discovered I came to when researching for this website was that our salvation begins in this life and it is entirely accessible through faith in Christ.  In verse 3 Peter says we have been given a new birth and living hope through the resurrection.  A living hope is a hope that continues and is available to us through what Christ has done.

It is Christ that protects us.  We are protected by the Holy Spirit through faith.  There is no mention anywhere in scripture that submission to authority is required for spiritual protection.

Another issue with this teaching surrounds the definition of church.  Is it an official religious non-profit organization?  Does it have to be in a denomination?  What qualifies?  If I stop attending one church but start a new house church up with 5 friends do I go from being protected, to unprotected back to be being protected again?  The whole notion gets really silly.

What isn’t silly is the impact this teaching has on people in the realm of the spirit, heart and mind.  It is a spiritualized protection racket.  A protection racket is an extortion scheme. The mafia approaches legitimate businesses and offers their "protection" services.  If they don’t get their dues then they designate the uncooperative business as free game for freelance criminals or the organization itself.  In a church people are given a similar choice of options.  Either you stay in church and do as you are told or the devil will get you, God’s provision will decrease and so will God’s presence in your life.

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Even when people are mistreated and abused they will stay and endure because they are afraid of what doom lies for them outside the covering of their church.  This fear driven manipulation does horrible things to people spiritually, mentally and emotionally.

This particular aspect of covering theology can be difficult to disprove.  If someone leaves the church and something bad happens to them then it is cited has proof.  If nothing bad happens then people expect it is coming just around the bend or they expect things would have been even better if they hadn’t left.  If something bad happens to someone in church then they must have sinned or lacked faith.

The truth is that we experience more of the richness of God family and the benefits of fellowship in a church.  There is incredible strength and a greater diversity of ministry in a local body.  However one needs something far deeper than a church membership to tap in to these benefits.  People need healthy relationships built on trust and held together by sacrificial love.  This is the way God designed his body to work.  People in authoritarian churches rarely experience this.

Christ’s blood is what sanctifies us.  It is what makes us more like Him.    It isn’t a stretch to believe that what makes us more like Christ will protect us.  We enter in to that relationship through the blood of the cross by our faith in Christ.  That doesn’t change whether you are in church or not.


Bevere, John. Under Cover. Thomas Nelson: Nashville, 2001.

37 comments on “Is submission to church leaders necessary for spiritual protection?

  1. thank you. After suffering much abuse serving this system my family and I nearly lost our way. men abusing in the name of christ whom we had to forgive and serve none the less left us broke angry at god. THANK god we jhave since gained a deeper understandin and are now letting the BLOOD OF jESUS AND THE HOLY SPIRIT GUIDE US. LORD HELP THE SHEEP WHO NEED YOU

  2. What a sad state where Christians get hurt by leaders and turn septic. The word say’s serve and obey your leaders. It does not say serve if you feel like it. Or serve unless they ask you to tithe etc.
    I rebelled once against one I regarded as off the mark. But God MADE me sit at his feet in true biblical example. Why? Because thats Gods plan and also because that leader is Gods problem not mine. When I finally did God took me out to serve one who taugt Kingdom principles correctly and if I had not learnt the lesson I did, I would not have been able to submit to this othe Pastors leadership properly.
    There is TRUE freedom in serving one who is a true Apostle, one who had fruit and one who’s complete family (4 generations) are in the church. Without that, the leader is false according to scripture as he cannot manage his own family.
    If you cannot find a true spiritual father, hang on until you do – after all, you are God’s problem. If you decide otherwise then you are decidign that God cannot redeem your situation.
    Don’t make the same mistake I did before realising. On the oher hand, making the mistake does make you see clearer!

  3. Brent

    I have a question for you. You said “The word say’s serve and obey your leaders.” Could you point me to the places in the bible where it says this?

  4. I am currently in the midst of being ‘distanced’ by several church people at the church where I have attended (‘one of the fastest growing in the nation’ by whoever measures this) for over a year, (and was in their transition to ministry program for 6 mos), because I think I am viewed as ‘being in rebellion!’ by a couple of ‘assoc pastors’. lol. Yes, LT, it is rather silly…how a rockstar pastor can get the ‘hungry for faith’ so fired up that they just ‘know’ they are ‘annointed for this in this generation’, etc, etc….

    Problem for me is, not my rebellion issue, but that this church does not make it transparent to members and visitors that it operates with this ‘Spiritual Authority’ concept – to the severe degree it does. All of the ‘leadership’ folks are under it and accept it (and of course, think they have some special annointing)…but the average Joe and Jane Christian attending knows nothing.

    I’ve been waiting for 2-3 weeks for couple of the elders I use to know…to respond to me (but they are ‘busy’). My simple question to them? “Did I miss something? I was never told this authoritarian structure was in place to the degree it is”. So far, nothing.

  5. The Word doesn’t say ‘serve and obey your leaders’…(There is great freedom in simply READING the Bible for yourself, trusting the Holy Spirit to do His job, that is lead you into all truth and teach you).
    The Bible DOES say that while Christ is the head of my man(my husband.yes I am a woman), & my man is the head of me…that is a Biblical and very safe place for me to be. It doesn’t however, mention anything about a pastor OR worship leader being in authority OVER me.
    I have been in several different local fellowships, one in particular that fully supported the ideas above, showing the full course of Authority and Submission by J Bevere.
    These places that call themselves churches doing the will of God, cause much hurt and damage to people.
    On the other hand, there is a church in Carpinteria, California known as Reality Carpinteria, that our son attends, and is now on staff, that doesn’t actually hold to some ofthese more pathetic and harmful teachings. All I see in Reality is that the people love Jesus and love people….
    I am frankly so tired of ‘churches’ I’m not inclined to attend any any more.

  6. I’m a minister in my local assembly, and I hate the teachings of submitting your selves to the bishop or lay your gifts at the apostles feet, I believe with all this sham, that its not bringing you no closer to Christ but to man. I saw all the hypocrisy of being elevated in the church, the more money u make and the more butt you kiss the faster man will elevate you. God is a God of order yes I do believe, but God said and the son shall make you free indeed, so ask yourself the question why are we going back to this garbage, the reason is that the flesh is pulling us back in their because of fear, I left that church for 2 years and no lighting struck me and I was able to be used by God under full anointing. Let’s take a look at john the baptist, or even elijah, or even elisha where or who was their spiritual covering, when they was alone, god says they that wait upon the Lord shall renew they strength not in man or their principals but on God I sure hope some one will be blessed God Bless you all the struggle is not over, but with God all things will work together for your Good yes yours.

  7. I think that churches which have such a hierachical autocratic structure are manipulating and controlling their members. I had been visiting a charismatric church in South Africa which propagates the prosperity gospel and which also enforces this “spirtiual covering concept”. The associate pastor continually tried to get me to become a member, however I kept telling him that I only want to be a visitor because I am trying to decide where I want to go to church. He then told me that I must submit to the authority that God has placed over me! (I was not even a member, and he was trying to place his authority over me NOT God!). I then told him that God has instructed me to test all things, and that luckily for me the Holy Spirit is not manipulative and pushy and I am allowe to choose where I want to go to church. My husband was a member of that church before we were married. Sometimes I go there just to support my husband…..but other times I visit other churches. The one time when I did not accompany my husband, the assoc pastor asked him where I was, and my husband replied that I had gone to a church where they were having a healing service (as I had been struggling with my health). The pastor then replied that I should be going to church with my husband (instead of being empathetic about my struggle and offering to help). Meanwhile I had previously asked that very same pastor to pray with me about my health and he refused – he said “not now, maybe another time”. I end up going to other churches because that church wasn’t able to help me………and because their major focus is on prosperity, not on the great commission to go out and heal the sick, spread the good news, set the captives free…..!

  8. Dear LT,
    Probably a good place to start would be…

    Heb 13:17

    Obey your leaders and submit to their authority. They keep watch over you as men who must give an account. Obey them so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no advantage to you.

    I see this as submitting to the authority of those who have been placed in a position of covering and authority over you.

  9. Dear Sylvia,
    I am saddened that you are tired of churches and intend not to attend anymore since you are part of the church.
    I agree that some “church” meetings may be more off track and broken than others but please do not give up meeting together as some are in the habit of doing but rather remember that we all need your participation as a beleiver who hears from God and can help to keep us on course.

  10. Seems to me that there are alot of broken people here with bitter root judgements about leadership and especially a misunderstanding as to the blessings of authority and covering. And of course there is nobody here unwilling to submit to authority of any kind!! Excuse my sarcasm. I am not discounting that there are some folks here in tough situations but maybe we could look at Noah’s story again. Just a thought.

  11. LT,
    After reading your page, I still don’t understand why you asked the question of Brent as to where it says this. Which is simply why I answered your question.
    If you are to submit to them, is it not their authority you are submitting to?

  12. By the way, I don’t believe we are ever asked to park our brain and blindly submit to any authority. We are given the mind of Christ and surely ought to use it along with the Holy Spirit’s guidance in discerning who is in authority over us because in this day, even the elect can be decieved. But that is no excuse not to submit to proper authority and live in a spirit of rebellion.

  13. I have to get back to work since I am currently in rebellion according to the people in authority over my work time by not using work time properly and if I continue there will indeed be dire consequences. Ok, I won’t miss the ark but I can’t miss a mortgage payment either.

  14. Randy: Sorry it has taken awhile to get back here. I questioned the statement about obey and serving leaders because I don’t see any passages telling me to specifically serve leaders. There are passages that instruct leaders to serve and everyone to serve but I don’t see any passages about people specifically serving leaders.

    The Hebrews 13 passage does pretty clearly layout the benefits and necessity of submission to church leaders. Where I think the authority teaching crosses the line is when people are threatened or coerced through fear mongering in to submission. I’ve been a church leader for 8 years now. I have found that people are more than willing to open up their lives to me when I sincerely love them. If a church leader is honest, sincere, loving and helpful people will submit to them. I also open myself up to the people I lead because I need the ministry of the body and quite frankly sometimes they see things I don’t and hear God when I don’t.

    I don’t think it is fair to label people in this thread as having a “root” of his or “spirit” of that. In my experience spiritual abuse does serious damage and not everyone comes through it sounding fair. Some people are just rebellious, but only God knows people’s hearts. I run in to just as many insecure church leaders who think they need to scare people in to submission so they can feel better about their position in the church. I don’t know their hearts either, so I think guessing at people’s inner motives and issues across the Internet is unhelpful.

  15. I totally agree with you Lt you can’t never judge a mans experience or ones stages of pain or fear. I believe God still holds the balm of gilead to heal our souls, but its god who does it, sometimes he uses man and other times he uses just must or even a child to speak through. So if man goes to church god bless him. If a man does not god bless him also. By the way the theif on the cross didn’t have a chance to go to no church anyway, but jesus told him thy sin are forgiven and today we will go to paradise. Its amazing how ppl judge others when they don’t understand their story but just like it says in mathew 15 1-20 to the pharasees leave them alone.

  16. LT,

    I’m convinced that people like Randy don’t understand that there is NO such thing as “covering”. And they are covinced that the religious system is correct. There is one head of the church and HIS name is JESUS CHRIST the only covering. Randy thinks because he has been blessed to come across a good leader that means covering and submitting to authority no matter what is biblical. However, contrary to popular belief, it’s not. There is NO where in the Bible that states there is an unconditional submission to MAN. Even on your job-submission have its limits unless it will tear down your family life. I willingly submit –not forced to submit. The forced and the fear is the problem!

    Randy. We are not talking about good leadership that submits to God and the people. And that shows honor and respect to those in his congregation no matter if they have a title or not.

    There are people that refuse to submit to anyone but that’s not our problem to bear. Just like Jesus said, the poor will always be among you. So keep feeding the poor with the understanding that they will always be apart of this world. Such as those that refuse to listen-lets pray for them.

  17. I love the example of the tabernacle in the OT. All the stones were fitly joined together and all had a purpose. Like this in the NT each member is vitally important in the body of Christ just as each member of the physical body is important. All have gifts are necessary for proper functioning, some are teachers, some preachers, some the gift of prophecy etc, but all work together. There is only one cornerstone-Jesus Christ. I agree with LT, there is a mutual working together with or submission to each other just as we are all accountable to each other in how we treat each other. Leadership is not only accountable to God alone, but to those in the congregation as well. I know some churches use a quote “Moses model”, but even if they want to use that, there is flaw in their interpretation. Moses did not appoint who was going to be the priests etc…God chose himself in front of the people…was it not Aaron’s rod that budded, not Moses who appointed Aaron. There are too many people who seem to need to be in control at almost any price these days…I have to wonder what their abnormal need for control is based on. Do they lack trust in God to have control?

  18. I decided to leave my church I was apart of for fifteen years.. I belive in the Word of God it is definitely true and has changed my life tremendously, God is an awesome God.. However There was so much spiritual abuse going on in the ministry that I could no longer take it. As I begin to dig deeper in the Word searching God’s truth I begin to realize that I was being taught wrong on so many different levels, It was heart wrenching! In this ministry you couldn’t question the pastor about what was being taught, If you did you were exiled.. If you didn’t tithe or serve you were made to feel guilty or The pastor wouldn’t speak to you & treat you totally different from before. Continue giving four times during service, now don’t get me wrong I’m all for being a blessing to whoever God places on my heart to give to, however you shouldn’t be made to feel bad if you don’t. I know the bible says, Charity starts in the home first as well as you paying your debtors so If I neglect to pay my bills & is coherced into giving to the church doesn’t that mean I’m robbing God or being disobedient to the law that God speaks about in Deuteronomy. I can go on & on about so many different things, just like the scripture Touch not my anointing & do my prophet no harm, So many pastors speak about that scripture as not putting your mouth on the pastor or you will be cursed, when in actuality this scripture means if I vviolently put my hands on them.. As well as needing a covering and I have to obey the pastor and be apart of a ministry in order to be covered, Well I believe that once I accepted Christ as my Lord and Savior then my covering is the Blood Of Jesus. So much! So Much! That’s why I believe 2Timothy 2:15 that we must study to show ourselves approved, so that you can rightfully divide the Word of Truth.. I need God’s healing.. I’m Totally broken.. anyone has answers or help me??

  19. Guys its all about being under authority .the centurion says i am under authority and have soldiers under me. Jesus then says ive never seen such faith. Be carefull some are satanists who know the power of covering. Are u saying no to Fatherhood again. Pst Chris is covered by copeland, oyedepo/copeland,prophet boateng/duncan williams, duncan/Angley.jamal brynt/bishopTd jakes. Covering is very important.

  20. I think Hebrews 13:17 could be better rendered: “Have confidence in those who lead you …” than KJV’s “Obey [3982 peitho] them that have the rule over [2233 hegeomai] you …”

    This frees the Christian up from being “lorded over” (1 Peter 5:1-3) and helps them take the personal responsibility of refusing to follow leaders who lead them astray. If leaders are not leading you according to the rightly divided Word of truth then you shouldn’t have confidence in them and shouldn’t allow them to lead you.

    3982 pei,qw peitho {pi’-tho} • a primary verb; TDNT – 6:1,818; v • AV – persuade 22, trust 8, obey 7, have confidence 6, believe 3, be confident 2, misc 7; 55 • 1) persuade 1a) to persuade, i.e. to induce one by words to believe 1b) to make friends of, to win one’s favour, gain one’s good will, or to seek to win one, strive to please one 1c) to tranquillise 1d) to persuade unto i.e. move or induce one to persuasion to do something 2) be persuaded 2a) to be persuaded, to suffer one’s self to be persuaded; to be induced to believe: to have faith: in a thing 2a1) to believe 2a2) to be persuaded of a thing concerning a person 2b) to listen to, obey,
    yield to, comply with 3) to trust, have confidence, be confident
    2233 h`ge,omai hegeomai {hayg-eh’-om-ahee} • middle voice of a (presumed) strengthened form of 71;TDNT
    – 2:907,303; v • AV – count 10, think 4, esteem 3, have rule over 3, be governor 2, misc 6; 28 • 1) to lead 1a) to go before 1b) to be a leader 1b1) to rule, command 1b2) to have authority over 1b3) a prince, of regal power, governor, viceroy, chief, leading as respects influence, controlling in counsel, overseers or leaders of the churches 1b4) used of any kind of leader, chief, commander 1b5) the leader in speech, chief, spokesman 2) to consider, deem, account, think

  21. WOW! I just want to say you guys rock! This is how we find out what the Truths is, by being open and discussing it. With people like LT and John H contributing with wonderful gifts for knowledge.

    LT thanks so much for taking the time and effort to set this site up – revelation of the Word has definitely set me free from feeling like i was being a rebellious christian. I absolutely agree with submitting to each other in the Lord. It is only wise to get council and advise on any number of matters before making a decision and what better way to know that you are loved when you have some one to correct you when you a deviating from the word of God. However, I just can’t get behind having to ask someone’s permission to move house or change jobs….. And honestly as a woman, I have still to find the scripture where it says that God created me less than a man, or that only men can make doctrinal decisions.

    I think that scripture is also quite clear that if you allow someone to be your “covering” you are creating an idol above God….1 Tim 2 vs 1-6, Jesus is our only access to God.

  22. god bless i really believe that submision is something someone does willingly not by force or by manipulation by another person, true sheep know there PASTOR wich is JESUS CHRIST if someone is speaking and JESUS IS SPEAKING THROUGH THEM TRUE SHEEP WILL KNOW HIS VOICE I MEAN WHO CAN WITHSTAND HIS LOVE, HIS LOVE WILL ALWAYS BREAK US DOWN EVEN WHEN HES DISCIPLING US OR CORRECTING US,MY PRAYERS GO OUT TO THOSE WHO HAVE BEEN ABUSED BY CHURCH AUTHORITIES,JESUS CHRIST IS THE HEAD OF THE CHURCH THE CHURCH IS HIS WIFE AND IF SOMEONE IS MISTREATING HIS WIFE THATS CALLED IN LEGAL WORDS SPOUSE ABUSE,IT SADDENS ME AND ANGERS ME AT THE SAME TIME I WOULD HATE SOMEONE TO MISTREAT MY WIFE AND MY TWO PRETTY DAUGHTERS I DONT KNOW WHAT I MIGHT DO YEAH I KNOW WHAT I WOULD DO, GOD BLESS AND TRUST JESUS CHRIST HE IS OUR TRUE COVERING

  23. To John H., I believe “3982 peitho” embodies all the following: to be convinced, to be persuaded, to win over, to trust, to obey. Therefore Heb 13:17 can be said to mean ‘to obey your leaders because you trust them and are convinced of their integrity…” But I do not believe it should translated as ‘having confidence’ instead of ‘obey’. It should include both concepts. Perhaps it is in the same way that children obey parents because they trust them. If your church is a “safe” church, then your heart should be able to trust safely in your pastors. But if your pastors are manipulative, controlling or lacking in intergity, well…

  24. Great conversation. The grace administration is awesome to live in. I’m thankful I stumbled onto this site. This issue is something I have been studying for years and had come to the conclusion that being a member of the body of Christ means ‘holding the head’ because it is the head that directs the body. We each have Christ in us.

    Ephesians 5:17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;
    19 speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;20 giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; Col. 3.16, 17
    21 submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.

    We are always submitting to someone. God is not the author of confusion. Leadership is someone who goes first. Others can always learn from someone. Proverbs 13:10 10 Where there is strife, there is pride, but wisdom is found in those who take advice. God’s leadership is not positional. Jesus Christ showed God’s Word in operation and taught others to do the same. That is what true leadership is.
    Love your site LT and enjoy the fellowship in the comments.

  25. Hello, this discussion is really helpful. I have been a christian a long time and have struggled continually over this issue of submission to church leaders. I still wonder “am I missing some deep truth about willingness to submit to a leader and the whole concept of God being able to use my life only to the degree that I have learned to submit to authority”? The truth is I am wary of ‘man’ indeed I know how fickle I am myself. My husband and I have been in our current church situation for the past 3 years, we joined ourselves to this ministry I believe by the leading of God and our testimony is that God has worked powerfully in our lives through much personal tribulation, persecution from external pressures etc but the ministry is very controlling and having carried a heavy commitment to serving for the past 2 years as leaders we are stepping down but I feel a great sense of failure that I have served for some of that part unwillingly and in bad grace because what we took on has grown way beyond what I felt willing or able to carry when i talked to my pastors about my concerns I was encouraged to ‘stretch’ and that I should not pull back from serving or I would lose my breakthrough and miss out on all God is doing in my life. I suppose I don’t believe the great anointing at the church and the way God has worked in us personally justifies the means which is unquestioning agreement with everything the pastor says even if I have personal misgivings about how serving in the church is impacting on my other commitments, children, family work, supporting my husband in his business etc. I have periods of great turmoil and dis peace which I know is not of God. I love the Lord and I need clarity. All this has made me feel that perhaps I have never been a ‘real’ christian. I battle with cycles of resentment, criticism and confession.

  26. i always knew that being under a certain ministry or a church,is important but i did not know how,so.i blv that as heb 13:17,says that Obey your LEADERS and submit to them, for they keep watch over your SOUL as those who will give an account. Let them do this with joy and not …
    FROM THIS verse,if i submit not under any authority or leadership my Soul is not watched after.so this means being under leadership or submitting is bibblical.
    The word of God is the altimate truth.
    one of the reason way the Church is not experiancing what the acts church did i think,we all want do as pleases,the apostle had leaders,elders to submit under,however this doen’t meat they substitute OUR Lord Jesus.

  27. I’m sorry Koena but your interpretation is flawed. Just because it is the job of leaders to watch over souls that doesn’t mean it can’t be done by anyone else. Jesus is always watching over use, regardless of whether we submit to church leaders.

    The question is whether we are connected to Jesus. Connecting to mere human leaders can be setting our minds on the things of the flesh.

    Rom 8:5 For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.
    Rom 8:6 For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace,
    Rom 8:7 because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward God; for it does not subject itself to the law of God, for it is not even able to do so,
    Rom 8:8 and those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
    Rom 8:9 However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him.
    Rom 8:10 If Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, yet the spirit is alive because of righteousness.
    Rom 8:11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.

  28. The word Obey in Heb.13:17 does not mean listen to everything that comes from someone. It means to have confidence in someone based on evidence. It’s the same word used for John the Baptist when people were persuaded (obey) he was a prophet, It is translated persuade or persuaded numerous time in the New Testament.
    It’s used in Romans 8:38 when Paul said he was persuaded that nothing could separate us from Gods love.
    We are also commanded to try ( test ) the spirits i.e. teachers to see if they are of God, and Paul instructed churches to do those things which they saw him doing.
    The first step becoming a cult is when leaders demand submission because then they control the minds of the people. In fact it’s one of the things that got satan kicked out of heaven, satan wanted to sit on the mount of the congregation! The word sit there means to rule. This teaching is no joking matter. When leaders have to remind others to submit then I always question their own authority. It shows a lack of trust in the work of the Holy Spirit to empower others to follow Christ. It also makes me suspect as to whether or not that leader has been revealing Christ to the people. If they are not revealing Christ to the people, then that leader is not under submission to the word themselves as commanded in Eph. 4.

    The reason there seems to be such widespread disrespect for leadership is because leadership is trying to force submission by labeling those who refuse to submit as rebellious, not right with God, under satan influence, reprobate and on the list goes.
    A true leader inspires confidence in people to submit and they don’t have to be told to submit. Maybe the real issue is not with the people but with those who are supposed to be revealing Christ and following Christ which would then inspire confidence and desire to yield to their leadership.

  29. Once in a night prayer while i was sharing the word with the church, suddenly Jesus took me by surprise and told me to start washing the feet of all those present for the meeting. i was like “now? bu there are rebels too in there!” he said yes, i went inside took a bucket and mug and a towel and started off..this changed the church in total..people started crying and they wanted to wash my feet and the whole scenario changed..now I dont have to teach submission, the holy spirit taught us. well Jesus came to serve and when you serve others they understand the love of christ and there is no need to put in control measures..the holy spirit starts leading us in all truth.
    surej jacob
    heavenly feast
    kingdom of bahrain

  30. I read that many believers have been hurt by pastors and leaders at churches. I am so grieved to hear that. God wants to see tou restored and whole. kniw that God has true and faithful servants who operate in God’s love and compassion. If you need healing, prayer, deliverance, or just to be loved, please contact my husband and I. We would love to pray for you.

    Francesca, God’s bondservant
    Shekinah Fellowship Church/Yahweh’s International Ministries
    http://www.shekinah-fellowship.org
    Rancho Cucamonga, CA

  31. Hello LT

    Can’t we please get a “Like” button on here? There are some comments I would really like to “like” 🙂 Also, do you think it would be possible to have a small “comment box” beneath every comment? That way, we can comment directly to each comment we read. To do it all in one go at the bottom would require me to send several “comments”. Well, a lot of “comments” here, hey?

    Thanks for this site and your loving labor to teach us and guide us. I appreciate it.

  32. The book of Hebrews, I am sure we can all agree with, is a letter to the Hebrews contrasting the difference between the old covenant they were used to living under for 1,000’s of years and the new covenant through the sacrifice of Jesus and no more human effort of the slaughtering of bulls and goats for the remission of sins, that had now taken it’s place.

    Many of the epistles written to the Jewish Christians were compelling them to not go back to the law, but to trust that Jesus had now become the way to the Father.
    Jesus had now become the mediator of this new covenant which is the good news or “gospel”
    From the context of chapter 12, in Hebrews, the writer is explaining the good news of Jesus. He is now the mediator of the new covenant. Going on to the 13th chapter, which is still in relation to chapter 12, he is talking yet about Jesus (5) (6). Verse 7 refers to their teaching of Christ versus the old covenant. Verse (9) why? Not to be carried away from every wind of doctrine (judaizers were always trying to bring the Jewish Christians back under the law, or adding Jesus to the law. The writer (Hebrews) says that the heart be etablished with grace. (Jesus) (Grace and Truth came by Jesus, John 1:17),not with meats (means religious ceremonies.)or the law. So he is saying be established in the teachings of Jesus as the Savior and do not go back under the law.
    Verses 10-13 contrasts again the difference between the old testament sacrifices and Jesus, the only sacrifice under the new covenant. Verse 17 says, “Obey them who have rule over you and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, and they must give account (to God) so they may do it with joy and not grief, or that would be unprofitable for you.”

    The writer is still talking about the Gospel of Jesus. The context has not changed. He wants them to submit to the leaders teachings of the gospel so that they won’t turn back to the law. The message, Paul said in 2 Cor.5:19-21, that he had, was of reconciliation back to the Father through Christ. This is the message. This is contrary to the old testament. Many Jews had gone back to the old covenant ways instead of going on with Jesus. The leaders would be accountable to God for this message of the gospel being preached to the people.

    Salvation only comes through Christ, there is no other way, therefore in Hebrews,(17) when he says that they (leaders) watch over your souls, he is talking about the message of the gospel of Jesus, for it is through Him and Him alone one can be saved. You can now see why that news watches over you soul. If they were to deny that Jesus Christ was the only Way, Truth, and Life (John 14:6) and return to the old they would be lost.

    By submitting to the leader’s teachings of Jesus we are able to recognize the salvation that He alone provides. Remember today if a person will not heed the true Gospel being preached, that Gospel will not profit them with salvation, this would grieve a true Leader.

    True submission is to the teaching of the cross and Christ. If you have a person God has instructed you to sit under and learn about Jesus, them we must do it with the uttmost respect to that person while we are under them. That is not to say you may not question doctrine. But questioning to learn is different than arguing.
    If that leader’s doctrine changes teaching that achieving salvation any other way than through the sacrifice of Jesus you have a God ordained right to leave and should.
    Paul said let him be accursed who preaches another gospel.

  33. Hello dear,
    I pleased about what you have mentioned regarding spertual protection that related to the church leaders because someone told me that in one lebanese churge the leader teached that you are not protected if you are not under churge leader protection depinding on Jone Bevere teach!(Reverence)

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