Four Foundations For Leadership – Foundation # 4 – Authority and Accountability – Brian Sauder.
A proper understanding of authority and accountability is critical for a leadership.
It will bring security into our lives and our churches. Our God is a God of all authority; however, the Lord in His wisdom has also given some of His authority to people He has placed in our lives.
Romans 13:1-2 – “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God — this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is — his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
Anyone who has authority needs to be under authority.
If you’re driving through a town and a police officer stands at an intersection and puts up his hand, every driver will stop because of the authority of the police.
The Lord has set up delegated authorities to help mold us into the image of Christ.
What does it mean to submit to authority? The word submit means to yield, stand under, defer to the opinion or authority of another. Submission is an attitude of the heart that desires to obey God and the human authorities that He has placed in our lives. Whenever I resist any authority the Lord has placed in my life — parents, employer, police, church authority — I am actually resisting God. (Unless, of course, the authority is causing me to sin: Acts 5:29).
We do not submit to the authorities the Lord has placed in our lives because they are perfect, but because the Lord has placed them there.
Hebrews 13:17. The church must be built on relational authority. If we are not in relationship with those over us in the Lord, we fall into the trap of bureaucracy.
What if we don’t agree with the direction of our spiritual leadership?
Pray for them. Appeal to them in love. Check our hearts for any rebellion. The Lord may be calling us to another church that has the same vision we have.
So then, what should our response be to those who give leadership to our local church?
We are called to pray for them, support them, submit to them and appeal to them. 1 Thessalonians 5:12-13. The Lord is concerned about our heart attitudes.
The blessing of accountability
In Hebrews 13:17, we read that spiritual leaders “watch out for your souls, as those who must give account.”
What is accountability? It is to give an account to others for what God has called us to do. Personal accountability is finding out from God what He wants us to do and asking others to hold us accountable to do those things.
Safety in a multitude of counselors.
We need to have a small group of people to whom we can be accountable. We need to ask people to hold us accountable. It takes humility to ask others to hold us accountable for the way we live our Christian lives. Jesus held the disciples accountable.
Who is holding you accountable?
We are not called to live our Christian lives alone! It is not enough for believers to belong to an invisible, mystical church. The church is a local, visible church with practical commitment. We see this modeled in the church in Antioch, Lystra and Jerusalem.