Hebrews 13:17 Obey your leaders. Be willing to do what they say. They are responsible for your spiritual welfare, so they are always watching to protect you. Obey them so that their work will give them joy, not grief. It won't help you to make it hard for them.
My dictionary tells me that the definition of the word “submission” is to yield to a superior force or to the will or authority of another person. Yich! Who needs that in their lives, right?! I mean this is, after all, the twenty-first century. We’re not back in the dim, dark ages.
And yet submission, or obedience if you want to put it that way, is in fact a cornerstone of order in our society. In every social structure – whether it be in a choir following the lead of their conductor, a school where staff and children follow the lead of their headmaster, on the road where we submit to the road rules … wherever you look, whenever people get together, there has to be submission and obedience. No, not in a rigid, tyrannical way that robs you of your freedoms, but in a sensible way that in fact enables you to live in freedom.
It seems to me that there are two ways of submitting or yielding to authority. Willingly, or unwillingly. Gladly or with grumbling. With loyalty, or with loathing.
Obey your leaders. Be willing to do what they say. They are responsible for your spiritual welfare, so they are always watching to protect you. Obey them so that their work will give them joy, not grief. It won’t help you to make it hard for them. (Hebrews 13:17)
I’m a great fan of democracy in government and I’m a great fan of consultation and discussion in the workplace. But at the end of the day, the people in authority have to make decisions. Sometimes they’ll get it right; other times they’ll get it wrong. Hopefully more the former than the latter, but not always. That’s a given.
So when you’re the one in authority, how would you like others to submit to your decisions? Just think about that … and now, this question: When you’re the one submitting to authority, how do you normally submit? Willingly, or unwillingly? Gladly or with grumbling? With loyalty, or with loathing? Just asking.
The next time you’re in a position where you have to submit to a decision or a law or someone in authority over you that you disagree with, please, remember this:
Obey your leaders. Be willing to do what they say. It won’t help you to make it hard for them.
That’s God’s Word. Fresh … for you … today.