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Ron Kelly
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Ron Kelly

Senior Pastor, Village SDA Church, Berrien Springs, Michigan

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  • December 29, 2018
    9:30 AM

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This message was presented at the G. Y.C. to the ng in Houston Texas for other resources like this is a desk online and she wants the web or. At the 7th everyone. To do to follow opportunity to be in the South when you live in the north and enjoy some of what even though it might be a cool day for Texas is a warm day for barren Springs Michigan. Let's pray together. Thank you Lord for the privilege of Christian convocations thank you for the blessings that you've already poured out and I pray now Lord continue to prepare our hearts anoint the presentation we know your word is Spirit filled in Spirit breathes so now Lord I pray May we do nothing to short circuit its power bless us as we worship you through this day set a watch before my legs and a guard before the door of my mouth and give me holy boldness as well I pray and readiness of the heart myself and those who have gathered here to search the scriptures in Jesus' name amen you have your Bibles open them if you would to the book of Corinthians 1st Corinthians I have a challenging topic this morning but we've gathered as Beurre ends seeking to discern truth as Christians as 7th Day Adventists Christians we have allowed God Spirit to be the guiding beacon of our lives through His Word through the Spirit of Prophecy in communion and community with each other. The book of 1st Corinthians is one that I like to call the post-modern gospel. It's resplendent with a variety of challenges some that would make your church look like the healthiest church on the face of the planet. But it's not a stellar beginning even though it's a beautiful ending Paul finds himself dealing with a fractured church a group of people that are celebratory I've seen their allegiance to people instead of to Christ he's gotten word back from one of the notable untrustworthy women of the church that there is a problem and he's confident that it is so now Paul does not practice the modern forms of pastoral esteem ism he speaks with love the truth as it is in Jesus and He speaks directly 1st Corinthians chapter 3 verse one I'm reading from the New American Standard Bible says and I brother and could not speak to you as spiritual men but as to men of flesh as to infants in Christ I gave you milk to drink not solid food for you were not yet able to receive and indeed even now you are not yet able or you are still fleshly for since there's jealousy and strife among you are you not fleshly And are you not walking I like this supplied phrase in the New American Standard are you not walking as mere men. The implied directive is that the indwelling presence of Christ the friendship of Jesus the power of the Holy Spirit and the direction of the father raises up above what regular humanity would allow us to achieve and so this morning I want to talk about something very challenging to every human being I want to talk to you about authority and I want to talk to you about accountability. The 1st thing I want to ask you is are you subject to the lawful legal God appointed of forty's in your life are you accountable to anybody. Are you infected with the spirit of this age that defies your own opinion and your own experience and turns it into reality this morning we find ourselves in a larger picture as a world body of believers stressing and struggling over how to conduct our business but I want to come back to the individual experience this morning I want to come back to the experience of your home I want to come back to the experience of your church your work place God has said in this very same or a pistole that all things be done decently and in order it is impossible to do things decently and in order with individuals who are nurturing cherishing fertilizing a spirit of independence or rebellion so my story is just a little bit unique because I'm the child of a rebellious woman now my mother is highly esteemed in my life and if she had the link perhaps this morning she'd be watching instead she's probably watched the pastor at the church where I'm usually at but my mother is the middle of 3 girls whose life was difficult Her father was an alcoholic and the stories that I can recall from my own experience as well as the ones she told like she and her 2 sisters fleeing from their drunken father hiding with their mother my dear grandmother who prayed me into this church locking themselves in the bathroom because grampa was drunk with a butcher knife and was chasing them around the house this is not an ideal childhood I can remember as probably a 10 or 12 year old boy sitting in the car looking up onto the porch and saying dad grandpa is hitting mom he had her by the hair and he was beating on her now my father is at least it was before he became aged a larger man than myself. And to watch my dad go deliver my mother from the hands of someone that was supposed to create security was a strange thing so you could say my mother had excuse or reason she was expelled from her academy 6 weeks before she graduated. My mother was a rebel the Spirit of God is moving on her heart and she is submitting step by step to Jesus Christ in her older age can you say man now it's a strange thing that my mother in her younger years should make some of the decisions she made I learned early on in my home what authority was by the way this is one of the 1st things to be achieved by human parents is the loving direction of proper authority and control children who don't learn it become a blight to society to their own homes to the churches and the institutions they attempt to work for my mother taught me she meant what she said I can remember when I was in the 6th grade attending that little public school in market Heights Illinois getting a missive from the principal who had appeared at the door of my 6th grade classroom and had directed the teacher to send me out I was being sent home this was exceptionally unusual it was the middle of the morning you don't leave school to go home unless there is an emergency well in her point of view there was a problem sizeable enough to call me home when I got home what I found out was that the problem was that I had not clean my room the way she had told me to clean my room. Now this wasn't terribly surprising to me to be called home to do what she had told me to do. But what was more troubling was when my room was cleaned and my mother said to me now you're going back to school and I thought I'm going to face of 1000 questions and they're all going to be about why I love school my mother taught me that she meant what she said that was important because a year or 2 later at the end of a little summer vacation at my aunt and uncle's house she called me out on the porch and she said Ronnie some things are going to change for you now you have to remember by the time I was 1314 years old I was taller than my mother and I was looking down at her and she said to me you are going to church school in a few days and I said No I am not now you have to remember from each She was a bad association when I was a little boy my grandmother had tried over and over again to make this church thing stick and I can remember going into the primary room this is my 1st memory of church and still fairly vivid in my 54 year old mind and I'm sitting in a circle with all these primaries in the basement of the Peoria church and they had handed out books of the Bible Now fortunately for me I didn't get a guy Zechariah or something like that I got the easiest book in the Bible to pronounce except I got it wrong because when they came around to me I said I had the Book of Job. And that's exactly what happened. And I decided I don't ever want to come back to this place again now it wasn't their fault and yet every parent with a little child ought to send their children to Sabbath school knowing they're going as a missionary because some backsliders kid might be there that day because their grandma is praying for them that's what happened to me and I thought when I show up in that church school I'm just going to get perpetual rounds of being a misfit only now I'm a lot older and it bothers me a whole lot more. My mother wasn't going to back up an inch she had bought my father for years a good man but a man who didn't understand why you'd pay good money to leave a good public school but my mother in a strange situation a paradox as it were from her own life of rebellion was now exerting an authority over me and pretty soon standing on that front porch I was weeping and crying and praying that she would change her mind because I saw that steely look in her face there was no going backwards I was going to Peoria junior academy because she said so. And when I walked into that classroom that 1st day and the Spirit of God was there upon the teacher and upon many of the students I began a trajectory that has me standing before you here today because in my home there was a proper understanding of who was in charge and what authority meant lobbying proper firm kind of authority. Now this morning I want to remind you of some stories in the Bible we're living in an age in which independence of thought the post-modern mantra for how you're to live is that what happens between your experience and the snap seize in your brain create your own reality and nobody has a right to question it but this is not what the Bible teaches this is not how healthy homes work and this is not how healthy churches work we believe in a higher authority that is God's word a man that authority directs our paths it supersedes culture when it comes to moral living and suicide told directions on how to maintain this authority in the home we can go all the way back take your Bibles go back to 1st Samuel Chapter 2 we can see that this authority should be practiced 1st in the home 1st Samuel Chapter 2 The sad story of a man who did not properly exercise his authority Eli his boys. They had no sense of the sacred they did not recognize there's their father's authority for Samuel Chapter 2 looking at verses $12.00 to $17.00 we won't read it all but let's just start with verse 12 it says now the sons of Eli were worthless men and they did not know the Lord. Skip down to verse 27. There was a man of God sent to Eli's house the man of God came to Eli and he said Thus says the Lord did I not indeed reveal myself to the house of your father when they were in Egypt in bondage to ferals House did I not choose them from the tribes of Israel to be my priest to go up to my altar to burn incense and to carry an ipad before me did I not give to the house of your father all the fire offerings of the sons of Israel and then this telling rebuke Why do you kick at my sacrifice. And my offering which I have commanded in my dwelling and on are your sons above me making yourselves fat with the choicest of every offering of my people Israel and then if you turn over to the next chapter come down to verse 13 we know that Samuel has a vision it be a heavy vision for a young person to relate to an older person by the way the Spirit of Prophecy speaking of this arrangement between the age of Eli and the youthful Samuel says this is as it should be if you want to avoid issues with authority practice the cross generational honor that God has put in place start with your parents go to the Sabbath school teachers the preachers and all those other individuals that are in your life this young man had a telling painful prophecy for his mentor verse 13. Or have I not told him the most about to judge his house forever for the iniquity which he knew because his sons brought a curse on themselves and the final telling epitaph on the ministry of Eli's family is and he did not rebuke them. So I want to ask you today are you under authority husbands do you recognize that there are people putting your life to bring accountability to your manhood. Young people does the admonition to obey your parents matter to you or do you believe they don't have rights in certain places Ellen White commenting on the story of Eli and his sons and challenging a dysfunctional family of her day reminds them that while they are under your roof and even beyond your parental authority the parental authority in your life is not over does it change does it more does it adapt yes but that admonition to honor those that are placed in authority over you is imperative take your Bibles and go to the book of Matthew Matthew Chapter 8 leading off in the New Testament gospel after the sermon on the Mount is this powerful story. It's the story of a non Israel ita non-Christian a non admin a stiff you would. The story of a man who had been watching from a distance. Matthew Chapter 8. He has a sick member of his household and he would like them to be healed. A servant. Jesus says in verse 7 I will come and heal him but this century and said Lord I am not worthy for you to come under my roof just say the word and my servant will be healed and this phraseology in verse 9 is exceptionally powerful he says for I also what a strange lady and to honor Jesus but he says for I also need to. I am a man under authority with soldiers under me and I say to this one go and he goes into another one come and he comes and to my slave do this and he does it. And Jesus is almost stunned by the experience it speaks to him so powerfully that he stops and makes a commentary where he says I've not seen such great faith in all of Israel I think sometimes we forget that Jesus is THE LEAD example of how to live under authority Jesus was under his parents' authority with a few exceptions when the authority of his father dictated a different course like at the 12 year appointment in the temple Jesus himself walked under the direction of his father with no literal structural governmental authority in his life he walked in the way that God chose for him and this was the model for you and me so what does it mean when we start to dialogue about dynamics of authority in the church. And why it will speak and she says. Men and women who in their different organizations are brought together and church capacity. Have peculiarities and faults as these are developed they will require reproof if those who are placed in positions. Never reproved never rebuked they would soon be a demoralising condition of things that would greatly dishonor God there's something about the dynamic of someone standing in your way when you're marching down a wrong road that is absolutely imperative to eternal salvation and health and happiness in this world. Now. We all come from a variety of churches your church may be very healthy at the moment your church may be struggling we also are involved in a larger body. And why it has a 1000 references now of course many of these are repeats but when you go to the Web site and you study the phrase press together when you go to the website and you study the phrase the prayer of Christ all of those can be tied back or most of them to the references to John Chapter 17 Christ prayer for Oneness it is impossible to be one with someone who is nurturing the root of rebellion of independent thought and spirit if you're married to somebody like this I feel sorry for you keep praying be wise and patient. If you're raising a child who has decided that their own way is better than anybody else's This is a challenge God will work in the midst of it to do something in you and eventually by God's grace and through your prayers in the life of the child if you're in a church and their stress fractures all around don't give up it's a call to prayer Jesus prayed in John 17 that we would be one just as he and the Father and the spirit were one it is so absolutely important that we are one because this one this is more and more unique in an age of polarization and stress fracture. And white writing in 1908 when the church was undergoing one of its most painful moments said Satan is the accuser of the brother and when he can set the leaven of dissatisfaction to work in the human hearts he's exalted when he can divide the brother whether it's at home or church or wherever when he can divide the brother and listen to this phrase he has a hellish Jubilee. This kind of party should not be thrown with the encouragement of thinking praying some day Heaven is Christian it's not our job to fertilise our nurture the kind of division it takes too much work to stay together look around everything's falling apart families institutions even the government it appears that people can't talk anymore and it must be about time for those prophetic strokes described in the Book of Revelation to take place when we see a great overreach of authority a dominion over conscience she goes on and she says I think of our brother could see as I've seen how much wrong is done in speaking evil of our brother and there'd be an entire change in the way we treat one another. You do not understand yourselves very interesting phrase you misinterpret words and deeds and you measure them from your own finite standpoint your imagination lead you astray your feelings your tongues which are not sanctified are employed in service and work that is anything but holy and Christ like. I had a member send me an email just a few weeks ago. And he told me of a painful story there happening in southwest Michigan. Very respectable member sound solid man older gentleman respected in the community said he went to do some work. He was probably consulting somebody on a project where he's an expert in his field and in the process somebody who had worked if you'd like to say it in such a way farther up in the organization of the church went into the house and they came out with a cartoon. The cartoon had a picture of one of our leaders wearing a Nazi S.S. Gestapo uniform and the person holding the piece of paper thought it was exceptionally funny. The member who related the story to me did not. And he fulfilled a proper role in challenging in love the perspective of the individual who thought that the caricature of one of our leaders was humorous I don't know that he changed anybody's mind but he did the right thing in challenging a wrong mindset. We're reaping the bitter fruits of at least one generation maybe 2 in America and beyond America. That largely speaking has not been held accountable by its parents its teachers or its ministers when Paul says where to walk worthy and he writes a book that he thinks may break his relationship with the Corinthian church what he's doing is being a faithful father of that flock doctrine is important and it matters that we have right doctrine I want to assure you today that parental authority Pastore length or Eddie even positional authority is all part of saving us from driving our spiritual conveyances to heaven off a cliff and it's absolutely important that in my heart as Edwin Friedman says in his book of failure of nerve that I am responsible and honest with myself about myself because I might not see myself the way God sees me. I was dealing with a number of pastors many of them exceptionally wonderful people and I shared with them a summary of one of my presentations of the recent message on authority and power. The pastor lingered around for a little bit and he said to me you know I agree with what you're saying mainly but I'm not so sure about the maneuvering at the top the some of the maneuvering behind the administrational choices now I need to understand a word there's a word in our English language it is the word pejorative the word Prince George it is a phrase that means the words you're using are dripping with some form of negativity or detrimental speech something that cast a negative light if one of your church members were to come to me and say that you in your position were maneuvering something it's got the sound in the feel of manipulation it's not a proper way to describe somebody else's actions. But in my reflecting on the Scriptures I think there were some others in the Scriptures who thought that maybe there was some maneuvering going on take your Bibles and turn to the Book of Numbers Chapter 12 they were at the very top almost their younger brother was the leader his name was Moses. And it appeared that he had chosen to take advice from someone else than them it created a bit of jealousy the Spirit of Prophecy will writing created a bit of suspicion but what's worse is that in their journey to reconciling that somebody else was in the circle of administration they became blind. It was a blindness they could not see. Writing and patriarchs and prophets the author states that Jethro had come into the camp father in law of Moses and the Miriam and Aaron fear that his influence with the great leader exceeded their. Miriam Aaron she writes on page 83 were blinded by jealousy and ambition now to me that's a very important for race. Because when you're blinded you can't see she goes on to state had Aaron stood up firmly for the right he might have checked the evil but instead of showing Miriam the sinfulness of her conduct he sympathized with her listening to her words of complaint and thus came to share in her jealousy now I need you to understand something I have a very very expensive education I'm not talking about the one I got in Andrews which was worth every penny. I'm not talking about the one I got at the seminary which was exceptionally beneficial to me. I'm talking about the one that I got after that the 30 years of parenting and past 3 and where I have lost sleep lost friends lost favor. I'm talking to you about the rejection and the resistance to a ministry that I believe most of the time has been motivated by a genuine love for my people. Some of you have more expensive educations than I because you've sought to be faithful through the years and you're older than I am this life that we're living when we live it with Christ is the ultimate teacher for Jesus Himself is the shepherd and the architect he is the engineer of every day to teach the things we need to learn in the journey we're on yes this is education is expensive and I want to make sure you know something you need to be very careful how you listen to people. You listen to somebody the wrong way you have reinforced wrong thinking I said on the airplane last night between Karen and sunshine Ray that's her real name. Sunshine Ray was younger than me Karen was older than me sunshines on her way to take care of a relative who's struggling mentally she's concerned about her mental well being Listen if you don't show the right kind of discretion in listening you should always listen long enough to understand but you better be careful you don't listen in the wrong way to the wrong sentiments because you can reinforce them and set the person on a journey that they will pay a high price to make a U. turn on Erin should have stood up to her parents should have said Miriam you're going the wrong way God has clearly marked out our younger brother as the leader but instead of showing Miriam a simple ness of her conduct he sympathized and pretty soon she threw knew she was right and he thought she was right. Numbers Chapter 12. The Bible has a very interesting and painful confrontation recorded in this chapter and probably most of you have missed the power of its painfulness it says in verse one then Miriam and Aaron spoke against Moses because of the coast woman he had married or more he had married a kosher woman and they said Has the Lord indeed spoken only through Moses. Has he not spoken through us as well and then these the short phrase the Lord heard now all of us should be reminded of what Timothy is told by Paul and 1st tip in the chapter 3 verses 3 $4.00 and $5.00 the purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart of good conscience and faith unfeigned. If you're younger leader if you're a parent if you're a pastor if you're a teacher if you're just a Christian remember this Paul will summarize his book by saying Look the purpose of the command if you forget everything else Timothy remember this the purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart a good conscience and faith unfeigned when you say something you shouldn't say when you think something you shouldn't think and God plucks the cords of your conscience don't turn that into something religious that you need to kick to the curb there is a Living God he's unseen but he's alive he wants to dwell in your heart and mind and he will talk to you if you've educated your heart mind and journey in this book when Miriam in Aaron began thinking wrong and stinking wrong you can be sure the Spirit of God was at a time contending with them they chose to reject it but there is this commentary that God himself heard it 1st 3 now the man Moses was very humble more than any other man who was on the face of the earth and suddenly the Lord said to Moses and Aaron the Miriam you 3 come out of the Tent of Meeting So the 3 of them came out. You know when my mother called me by all my entire name with all my siblings and I was told to appear it was a troublesome moment on which this will be. When the Lord came down in a pillar of cloud and stood at the doorway of the tent and he called Aaron and Miriam and when they had both conform he said Here now my words this is a very direct encounter there's not a lot of warm up there won't be a lot of post lude but. If there's a prophet among you I have a large I'll make myself known to him in a vision I shall speak with him in a dream. Not so with my servant Moses In other words God's taking him up a notch He is faithful in all my household with him I speak mouth to mouth even openly not in dark sayings and he beholds the form of the Lord why then were you not afraid to speak against my servant against Moses So the anger of the Lord burned against him and he departed what you need to understand is that in the Book of Exodus Chapter 22. Moses directed the congregation of evil of of Israel not to speak evil against a ruler this is what Paul was referencing to when in Acts Chapter 22 or 23 he standing before the Sanhedrin and he starts his speech out by saying I'm standing before you here and all good conscience and the high priest doesn't like it and he says to his attendant hit him in the mouth he just gives a little hand moment and he hits Paul in the mouth and Paul says under inspiration not as era to be irritated response he says may God strike you you whitewashed wall for striking me against the law. And the person standing next to Paul says something very interesting he says are you going to talk at way about the high priest. And Paul says I didn't know it was the high priest and then there is his statement which is a reference to Exodus Chapter 22 don't speak evil against a ruler this dynamic has been communicated to Israel and yet it is something that Miriam and Aaron seem quite casual and going against you should not be speaking evil against dignitaries for even the angels Peter right don't bring riling accusations against them when you lose proper structure in society you can lose civility and when you lose these dynamics you've lost more than you can get back in a generation a home that is not properly under 30 a church and administrative structure there is to be a humility about the servants of Christ with an appropriate submission to each other that allows God to speak through the ones he appoints when David has been chased around the wilderness by saw he's in the cave David sneaks up to him his men are all saying this is what God said I'll turn your enemies over to you David goes up on his hands and knees pulled his sword out of its sheath the light coming from the entrance of the cave is glistening off the blade but all the while love from a pure heart a good conscience and faith unfeigned are wrestling with the would be kings and the will be kings Hart and David is close to taking the life of his persecutor but then he slides the knife back into a chief and he goes back and he says I'm not going to be the one who raises my hand against the Lord's anointed king David later finds another opportunity this time he's with one of his mighty men Abishai his nephew this is the man who will save David from one of the liason relatives later on and they'll tell David No more coming onto the battlefield with us. They go all the way into the center of camp which is a gutsy move. And as they are there with it a divine slumber on all of David's enemies Abishai says Let me take the spear and I can take care of him and one for us it'll be over and life will be better and different. And David says there's no way. God can take him out God can deal with him I'm not going to be the one who speaks the Lord's anointed I want you to know something if you are a child barring some unusual circumstance God has anointed your parents to be a proper authority in your life and it didn't end when you got old enough to come to G. Y.C. it changed and it will keep changing. If God has called your pastor to your church I hope that before he came you got down on your knees and did a lot of praying because personnel decisions are great big deals but once he brings them it's important for you to make sure that you understand that there were prayerful administrative moments and there was a laying on of hands and he is or she is to be the one that is guiding you on this journey. God is in the midst of his administrative componentry if we will bring him in verse 10 but when the cloud withdrawn from over the 10 behold Miriam was leprous as white as snow as Aaron turned toward Mary and behold she was leprous and the Lord said to Moses Oh my lord. I beg you do not account this send us which we have acted foolishly in and have sinned and don't let her be like one dead whose flesh is half eaten away when he comes from his mother's womb Moses cried out to the Lord saying Oh God healer I pray and listen to God's response. But the Lord said to Moses. Now this is going to strike many as. Offensive to the sensibilities of our modern society and our our culture this is going to strike many as out of character with the very nature of God but I'd like to challenge you this morning that when you become blind and when you become jealous and God's got to come down and smite you with leprosy there's a pretty serious spiritual disease that's farther in Vance than you might know and it might require a severe rebuke which is what this whole chapter is. But this is where God says. If her father had but spit in her face. She would bear her shame for 7 days. Let her be shut. Outside the camp for 7 days and she can be received again. This manifestation Ellen White will write of the large displeasure was designed to be a warning to all Israel to check the growing spirit of discontent and insubordination if Miriam's envy and desist satisfaction had not been signally rebuke it would have resulted in great evil the judgment visited upon Miriam should be a rebuke to all who yield to jealousy and murmur against those whom God lays the burden of his work you know we have a responsibility and a right to our leaders whether it's a parent or a teacher or a pastor or a governmental leader we have the obligation to pray Paul says for those that are an authority we have the God of divinely directed counsel of Matthew 18 to go and talk to people if I had a dollar for every time somebody said to me Pastor I won't do any good. How do you know it's not going to do any good. You don't know and tell you go and besides the good it will do will be in you by giving you the proper humility and courage and love that will only make you a more effective leader the rest of your life. And whether or not does any good in the moment and has the power to do good somewhere down the road. If you haven't read the rest of the book of numbers you need to understand that this problem with insubordination was an Israelite problem Stephen will be stoned in the book of Acts because he says that Israel was a still stubborn rebellious stiff necked people it's true the people in the camp of Israel needed no encourage Mitt from the 2nd and 3rd in command to stand up to their leader and act like their leaders too and if you read the next chapters of the book of numbers you see rebellion after rebellion you may think something that if you say will sow the seeds of doubt in resentment and insubordination and rebellion in the heart of somebody else and Satan is right there behind you to water and fertilize it and it may cost them their eternal life this is why God shows up so powerfully in this story and says there just isn't going to be any of this. You know there's a lot of references in the scriptures to military metaphors Paul talk about a surge of soldier not going to war at his own expense. We sing about Onward Christian Soldiers and stand like the brave the Spirit of Prophecy will talk about not everyone being able to be generals and captains and sergeants or even corporals and I'm quoting from or now out of Christian stewardship there's a hard work of other kinds to be done some must dig trenches and build fortifications some must stand a sentinel somewhere to carry messages you know like God has a specific special place for your life but he may not be calling you to lead he may be calling you to follow and hold up the hands of the ones he's called you need to support the ones that he has called to lead there's all kinds of metaphors of military might and military order in the Scriptures but right now the devil has one goal and this is the point he wants to make sure that 7th Day Adventists I'm is at war with nobody except itself and I want to think about it it's not your job to go home from this message or another and flavor your Christian life by chewing on the preacher or the teacher of the Sabbath school leader that's not how you are to flavor your Christian experience there is to be a beautiful submissive humility it's another humility to stand up in love when you should and it's another humility to get down on your knees and pray often. Until we recognize that we need accountability we will probably resent and resist accountability. And I can assure you for anyone that's dealing with dynamics of resistance right now that if someone will not submit to authority eventually they will have to convince themselves that that authority is abusive and not legitimately do the support of those that find themselves in the structures of governance underneath them if you should say such a way. I'm holding in my hands an amazing device I want to illustrate this because in a crowd this big there's bound to be somebody for whom this is salient. If I could smash every smartphone in the world that was held by an adolescent hand I'd do it. Not because it's inherent Lee evil just because I'm the father of 4 and I've gone through so many chapters where the world is trying to get between me and the rightful discipleship of my child by the unaccountable access to their mind with this with those A MOVIE know the thumb. They can be sitting at my table I can walk in and with one sweep of the thumb they can be in a different world. If you think I don't have experience I pastored for almost 20 years next to an academy. But my real experiences in raising 4 children you know my mother actually bought one of these for one of my children whom I will remain nameless so you only get a 25 percent chance of figuring out who it is if you know my kids. And before it was put into their hands I said Now you know that as a dad I have a right to look at this phone whatever I want and look at anything I want and you know what they did they couldn't they couldn't turn their head up and down fast enough to agree with what I was saying. But I want to assure you when the day came that I wanted to look at it that was none of my business. And I want you to think about this. Are you a woman are you a man are you a boy are you a girl under authority are you your own authority if so all the work of rebellion which is how God characterized Moses inability to go into the Promised Land read the Book of Numbers he is told that he acted in rebellion. We must conduct ourselves on the high plane of a noble dignified submissive spirit. Timothy tells us to test the spirits John tells us to test the spirits the spirit of independence of thought and pride of opinion we don't worship idols anymore we worship our own thinking and that is perhaps the most dangerous way to live. Where to reject a factious man the Scripture say now I'm about out of time. And I want to appeal to me I'm not God neither your parents neither is your boss neither is your conference President or anywhere up the line. But there's something about you that lends itself to this fantastic vitality of spirit which sometimes doesn't want the reins pulled in on it. There's not a person listening to me today who doesn't have to wrestle with their own carnality and the idea of wanting to be right and not be told that they're wrong. But it's dangerous in 1995 people went to the top of El Capitan. They were going to base jump off a $3200.00 foot granite monolith. And they were going to float down for 3 or 4 minutes to the base. Why were they there they were there to protest the rule they were there to protest that base jumping was no longer allowed in Yosemite. A young man not too many weeks before had jumped off El Capitan and loaded fine to the base and in his efforts to escape being apprehended by the Rangers he tried to cross the mercy of river and he drowned. So these 5 people wanted to take this rule to court and the way they thought it best to do it was to go break the rule. So 5 people made their way to the top of this amazing American icon of natural beauty 3 of them jumped. And then came Jan Davis's turn. Her husband was on the ground. Taking pictures. When you jumped you would be fined $2000.00 you'd be thrown in jail and the worst thing is they will confiscate your gear. She didn't want her gear confiscated so she borrowed someone else. When she leapt from the cliff that day 150 people at the bottom that were watching along with her husband who was good enough at parachuting that he had actually helped make some of the James Bond movies the cameras were clicking. And as she leapt into the air they watched for a few seconds and then they all started saying the same thing open. Open. It takes you 4 minutes to go from the top of El Capitan to the ground with a parachute it takes you 20 seconds without one. Unfortunately we know that her husband slumped over the camera. The pole cord on her chute was up here the pole cord on the chute she had on was down here. And she had no backup chute. We are living at the end of time we cannot afford to practice the mentalities of independence of thought. And the rejection of proper authority we must model proper governance and structure. For the sake of the world to see that the Holy Spirit reigns in our midst individually and collectively and this morning God has appointed me to ask each of you. Are you to a man or a woman under authority. Can God speak to you through someone else and it's not abuse of power it's legitimate loving concern could he even severely rebuke you and would you accept it like David did when Abigail came to him and wrote later on wrote let the righteous smite me and it shall be an ointment to me it shall be balm for my soul I'm appealing to you whatever role position or place you hold. To let the Lord Jesus Christ who submitted himself to terrible abuse of authority and I'm not suggesting there's not a proper way to stand up and speak truth to power with the spirit of Christ I'm simply saying let the truth speak to your own soul 1st so that you wouldn't be blinded and miss the elemental Lordship of Jesus Christ which would allow us to dwell together in unity and it could be like oil running down on the beard of their. Let's pray. Lord. Touch the hearts of my brothers and sisters do what only you can do to make us 1 May We end of age we let you be Lord of our lives and submit to the working out. The engineering of the architect of our character to live amongst the Angels where everything will be done decently in good order blesses to that end I pray in Jesus name Amen. This message is recorded at the G Y C to the end in Houston Texas. Supporting Ministry of the 7th Day Adventist Church seeks to inspire young people to be bible based pricing and so many Christians. 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