Dangers of Usurping Our Authority

Dangers of Usurping our Authority

If you are like me, when you hear the word “submit,” an automatic wall can pop up around you. So many of us have gotten sucked into the beliefs of the culture we live in, rather than staying rooted and grounded in what the Word has to say on this subject. Because of that, I wanted to look at a couple of examples in scripture of women who usurped their authority.

Our first example is Eve. She used her persuasive power to talk Adam into giving up his leadership and following her fleshly desires when they ate the fruit. We still suffer from the consequences of their actions. If we take the time to contemplate how our lack of submission or obedience can affect future generations, we might be less inclined to give in to our flesh.

Solomon’s wives turned his heart to other gods when he allowed them to assume the leadership role in the marriage.

Sarah talked Abraham into using Hagar to fulfill God’s promise to them regarding a son. There has been a constant conflict since that time between the Arabs and the Jews. Even this very day we are facing some of the remaining consequences of Sarah “usurping her authority.” Daily, we have precious soldiers losing their lives, or being wounded in Iraq. If Sarah hadn’t taken the lead on this issue, I have to wonder if we would even be in Iraq right now.

Submission to our husbands is seen by God as an actual part of our obedience to Christ. We are told in Eph. 5:22 to submit to our husband as “unto the Lord.”

What do you do when you feel it’s God’s will to do a certain thing, but your husband tells you not to do it? Num. 30:6-16 has some wonderful insights. I will highlight a few of them here, but in your quiet time, I would suggest that you take the time to read all of it. “If she marries after she makes a vow or after her lips utter a rash promise by which she obligates herself, and her husband hears about it but says nothing to her, then her vows…will stand. But if her husband forbids her when he hears about it, he nullifies the vow…and the Lord will release her…Her husband may confirm or nullify any vow she makes…If, however, he nullifies them some time after he hears about them, then he is responsible for her guilt.” (NIV) You can see here that if our spouse says no to something, then he is taking the full responsibility on the issue. Seeing this gives me a new respect for the leadership that is upon my husband’s shoulders.

In I Sam. 1, we see the story of Hannah pleading with the Lord to give her a son. She makes a vow to dedicate him to the Lord’s service. Notice in verse 22, Hannah tells Elkanah that she is going to present Samuel before the Lord, to live there always. In verse 23, Elkanah tells her, “Do what seems best to you.” (NIV) If he had told her not to do it, even though she had made the vow to the Lord, God would have released her from that vow.

In Acts 16:1, we find that Timothy’s mother was a Jewess, but his father was a Greek (an unbeliever). By law, Timothy was to be circumcised. Because of his father being Greek, his mother did not take him to be circumcised. God held Timothy’s father accountable for this, not Timothy’s mother. When Timothy became of age, he chose to be circumcised. (v. 3) You can see here that Timothy’s mother had a submissive heart toward her husband. Could her obedience to honoring and submitting to her husband have anything to do with how God used Timothy? I believe that it is quite possible.

We may be submissive to our husbands most of the time, and we may feel pretty good about doing that. However, we need to remember what the Word says in I Sam. 15:22. To obey is better than sacrifice. As wives and mothers, we are well acquainted with sacrificing. Regardless of how much we sacrifice, God wants us to be careful to obey in everything, to submit in everything. (Unless the submission would require us to sin against the Lord.) You see, unless there is obedience all the time, there is no obedience any of the time. If we choose when we are going to obey, we’re not really obeying at all. We are just choosing to do our own will, which happens to agree with our husband’s will at certain times. John 14:23 tells us that if we love Jesus, we will obey the teachings of Christ. In verse 24 it says that those who don’t love Jesus will not obey His teachings. Those are some really tough words to swallow, but if we remember that our lack of obedience in this area can have effects that are felt for many generations to come, it may drive us to our knees and depend on our Loving Father like we have never depended on Him before.

© 2003, Stacy R Miller

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Kayode Crown
    Apr 10, 2014 @ 05:56:08

    Reblogged this on Books by Kayode Crown.

    Reply

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