Turning the World Upside Down
One of the primary keys to the success of the church is understanding authority. More discussion is given to power than to authority in the church, but spiritual power does us no good if we do not understand authority. To be sure, they are twins, working together. However, the proper order is that we operate in Christ’s authority, which releases Holy Spirit’s power.
In yesterday’s post, I said that satan did not gain literal power, strength, or abilities at the Fall, nor did he lose his power at the Cross. He gained authority at the Fall and lost it at the Cross. Where satan and his control on earth is concerned, power has never been the issue. The issue has always been authority - does he have the right to use his power and abilities?
That satan has power, though it is limited, has always been evident. Throughout history, he has been able to perform supernatural acts (Exodus 7:11-12), place diseases on people (Luke 13:11), empower individuals to do superhuman feats (Luke 8:29), etc. Even after his defeat at the Cross, satan is still able to place diseases on people, control individuals, and operate in regions through demons. Anyone who has ever ministered in places where satanic worship, voodoo, or occult practices are rampant has seen supernatural manifestations of demonic power, such as levitation, superhuman strength, etc. Clearly, the devil still has power, strength, and abilities.
This does nothing to diminish Christ’s defeat of satan at the Cross. It WAS complete. When people, as individuals or corporately (regions), come under Christ’s rule, the evil one no longer has the legal right spiritually to use his limited power on them. The issue is always authority.
That this is the issue can be seen by a statement the Lord made immediately after the Fall. Yahweh told satan that Jesus (“the seed of the woman”) would crush his head (Genesis 3:15). The word “head” is rosh, which means not only a physical head but also “headship, the first in rank or authority.” (7218) The Lord was using the word figuratively, as He often does throughout Scripture, to indicate authority, dominion or “headship”. Humankind had been given headship - dominion, authority, rule - over the Earth (Genesis 1:26-28), yet satan had succeeded in acquiring it. God was acknowledging this but telling the devil that Jesus would crush his newly acquired headship or authority over the earth and that Christ, the last Adam (1 Corinthians 15:45), would take back this headship. How this would occur was a mystery, of course. No one realized how it would happen until Jesus became a human and went to the Cross.
Luke 10:19 also delineates very clearly the difference between power and authority: “Behold, I have given you authority (exousia) [Strongs 1849] to tread upon serpents and scorpions, and over all the power (dunamis) [Strongs 1411] of the enemy, and nothing shall injure you.” Christ was telling His disciples that He was giving them authority over satan‘s power.
This important difference between authority and power - and the fact that authority was the issue - is why Jesus announced in Matthew 28:18 that all authority (exousia) had been given to Him in heaven AND ON EARTH. He was declaring, “I have regained Adam’s lost authority on earth. I’m the new “Head” (Ephesians 1:22). Now you go and exercise that authority in My name, teaching what I have commanded you and discipling nations.”
Of course, as Almighty God, the Lord, the Most High God, the Creator of Earth, Christ already held personal authority over the earth, even before the Cross. At Calvary, He was taking back for humankind what WE had lost through Adam. Christ wanted His earthly family to rule earth with Him, and for Him, so He came as one of us, a human, an Adam, to represent us, redeem us, and regain our lost authority. He crushed satan’s headship, rescuing us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us into His kingdom (Colossians 1:13). Then He restored authority to us through His name.
The degree to which this rule and authority of Christ operates is determined by how well the Ekklesia understands and exercises it. He is waiting for us to represent Him. The word represent means “to present again.”(1) Representing someone means their will has been presented to a representative, who then “presents again” that will to others. As ambassadors of Christ’s Kingdom, we represent Him.
If the entire church understood and operated in the authority of Christ, the world would be a different place. The early church in Acts was accused of turning their world upside down (Acts 17:6). The body of Christ multiplied exponentially, moved in His gifts, preached with authority, healed the sick, cast out demons, and transformed lives.
As I have stated many times, we do not impose Christ’s dominion on people through physical force or natural government; we exercise it against the invisible forces of darkness. Where people are concerned, we love them and declare God’s truth, which includes the gospel. This releases authority. Holy Spirit backs all of this with His power, producing salvation and transformation.
Release Christ’s victory with authority in every arena of your life. Do so for yourself, your children and family, your finances, your health, your city and nation. Jesus promised that the gates or government of hell would not prevail against you (Matthew 16:18-19). Do not lose the battle through ignorance or default!
Pray with me:
Father, thank You for sending Christ to redeem us and restore what satan had gained. Jesus is now our head, and we submit to Him - no king but Jesus. He is Lord, Master, Supreme Ruler, Redeemer, and Judge over all the earth. And You have instructed us to minister in His name.
We do so now by binding every work of darkness in our lives and our families. We declare over our children that they WILL be saved. We break every stronghold, every addiction, all deception, remove the spiritual veil that blinds them (2 Corinthians 4:3-4), and release to them the power of Holy Spirit. As parents, we have authority in their lives, and we exercise it NOW!
And You have given us authority to pray for our government and nation. We do so, just as You instructed us (1 Timothy 2:1-7). We bind the demonic powers that have infiltrated our nation, declaring that their hold is broken, and their influence is being abated. As this occurs, we ask for Holy Spirit to continue releasing His breath, power, and a great awakening into our nation. This will occur! It will not be stopped!
We also ask for this to take place in other nations. We continue to ask for and declare that the greatest outpouring of Holy Spirit in history is beginning and will continue. The Head of the church and ruler over the Earth has decreed this, angels are at work to aid in it, and His body is in agreement. His kingdom will expand, nations will be saved and transformed, and a billion soul harvest will occur. This will NOT be stopped!
We decree that Jesus owns the earth, has all authority here, and has delegated it to His church. We will exercise this authority.
Portions of today’s teaching can be found in my book Authority in Prayer.
Click on the link below to watch the full video.
The Consolidated Webster Encyclopedia Dictionary (Chicago: Consolidated Book Publishers, 1954), p. 615.