Grace Protestant Reformed Church

Honoring God’s Authority

Date: AM
Text: Hebrews 4, 10; Lord's Day 39
Psalters: 276, 321, 223, 129
Series: Heidelberg Catechism
  1. The authority.
    1. God is in all of our life, and thus His authority is in all of our life.
    2. Authority is the God-given right to rule (not determined by greater size, power, wisdom, or any other ability).
    3. God delegates the exercise of His authority chiefly to Christ when He ascended: Matt. 28:18; Eph. 1:19ff; Phil. 2:11,12.
      1. No one has the right to rule over others except it is given to them by God (John 19:11).
      2. The home/family (where godly parents combine authority with love) is the school in which God teaches obedience.
  2. God requires that His children “show all honor, love, and fidelity.”
    1. Honor is an inner respect, to think highly of them, giving reverence (Heb. 12:9), showing inward respect (Lev. 19:3).
    2. Honor is always required – even and especially when we cannot obey or they sin against us or are wrong.
    3. Fidelity is faithfulness shown also when parents are old; there is no age limit to the honor commanded.
    4. Honor is the source of genuine obedience and submission.
      1. Obedience is a yielding of myself so I do as commanded.
      2. Honor submits when we may not obey, being willing to bear the consequences of not obeying them.
  3. Our heavenly Father encourages us by adding a promise to this commandment.
    1. God knows our natures, so He encourages us to obey with this wonderful promise.
      1. This promise was literal in the Old Dispensation - a type of divine blessing (and of the enjoyment of the blessing).
      2. In our Dispensation we look forward spiritually to the heavenly Canaan - an eternity of blessing.
    2. Compliance to authority (obedience and submission) is for our good, for without it orderly social life disappears into chaos.
    3. More importantly, this is well-pleasing to God (Col. 3:20).
    4. Finally, love God and show your love for Him by obeying Him and His will.