Biblical Authority

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Monday, February 13, 2012 2 comments

Authority. It’s one of those words that a lot of people dread. After all, why else would people run from the authorities, or complain about having to submit to authority? We as humans typically prefer our independence, and not have to be under an authority of any sort. While it’s important for all people to obey the authorities put in place over them, such as the police, parents, teachers, or your boss, those of us who are Christians need to obey another authority as well - the Bible.

Everything you believe in life, whether Christian or not, all boils down to one question: what is your source of authority? In other words, why do you believe what you believe, and where did those beliefs originate from? Christians have four places where our source of authority can be, and for most people it’s a combination of all four but not with equal weight. Those four places are the Scriptures, tradition, reason, and experience.

The Scriptures are, of course, the Holy Bible. I consider this to be the Old and New Testaments. Tradition is not just those things the church does all the time but rather the tradition of theologians that have gone before us. Tradition relies on all of the collective wisdom gained by Biblical scholars throughout the last few centuries. Reason is our intellect and how our brains are designed to use logic to figure things out. Finally, experience is those things that have happened in your life that made a big impact on the person you are today.

For me, my primary source of authority is most definitely the Bible. Last week’s post gives many of my reasons for this, but the most important one is because I believe it to be the inspired Word of God. It governs all aspects of my life and instructs me how to live so I can be a true Christ follower and worship God with my life, which is what I desire to do.

However, a person who is not a Christian would obviously have a different source of authority for their life. Perhaps it could be a book from another religion, or relying solely on their own intellect, or others around them. A person’s source of authority affects everything they think, believe, say, and do in their life, whether they realize it or not.

It is important to understand what the source of authority is in your life.

Is it the Bible? Or is it something else?

How trustworthy is your source of authority?

Why is it your authority?

Even if you don’t acknowledge one particular thing as your source of authority, investigate your life and try and figure out why you have the beliefs you have. Knowing your source of authority, and knowing that of those you are in conversation with, will help you understand both yourself and others much better.

One little side note from Jason DeZurik: For our atheists friends who read these, we know some of you say you have "lack of belief" and not belief. We hear you and are doing our best to undertand what you are saying. We would ask though that you please understand that your life is still based on something. So, please do an honest assessment of what is your source of authority? Thanks for reading and have a great day.


Anonymous said...

You didn't give a reason why the bibles authority is right. And yes the bible is a great tool for worship, but authority needs to be left out. People fear authority because it comes with set rules made by few people in power, who often mess things up. Look at any government ever. Jesus was completely against religion, and fully for peace and love. Its easier to love than to dictate. It also gets your point across better. The bible isnt wrong but people who take it so literally that it destroys the deeper meaning make it wrong.

Katie said...

Anonymous, I completely agree that love always gets the point across better! God is love, and the Bible is our way of fully understanding that love.

I also agree that people can destroy the meaning of the Bible, by misinterpreting it. We're all imperfect, sinful people, so we all have a tendency to twist things the wrong way sometimes.

We all need something in our lives that we turn to in order to help us make decisions. Whether you call it that or not, that person/thing is an authority to you. If you have a difficult decision to make, where do you turn? Your parents? Your friends? A website? The Bible? Whatever your answer is, that is your authority.

Personally, I believe in the authority of the Bible because it came from God, the Creator of the universe. What better authority could there be, than the One who made it all? He made the world, He made us, and He made the rules that govern this world, so He is the expert authority on life. The primary way we can get to know God is through the Bible. so the Bible is THE authority.