Listening to Elders and Submitting to Imperfect Authorities

Aaron Birk April 22, 2018

Question 1: What patterns do you observe in our culture for how we respond to elders and to authorities?

Question 2: What do you think you need from God in order to joyfully submit and obey your imperfect elders and authorities? Fill in the following blanks to evaluate your current struggles with imperfect authorities.

  • If only President Trump was more ____________, then I wouldn’t struggle under his authority.
  • If only Pastor (Birk) was more ______________, then I wouldn’t struggle under his authority.
  • If only my boss was more ________________, then I wouldn’t struggle under his/her authority.
  • If only my Dad/Mom was more _____________, then I wouldn’t struggle under his/her authority.
  • If only Faith Church was more _____________, then I wouldn’t struggle under their authority.

Question 3: What do you hope to gain or achieve by not being underneath your imperfect authority? 

Question 4: What type of authorities does God’s word command submission?

  • All People to ___________.  Scripture:
  • All Christians to _______  ____________. Scripture:
  • All People to _____________________. Scripture:
  • Servants/Employees to ___________________. Scripture:
  • Church members to ______________. Scripture:
  • Wives to __________________. Scripture:
  • Children to ________________. Scripture:

Question 5: What are positive examples of men in the Bible, who listen and submit to elders/authorities? What were the results?

Question 6: What are negative examples of men in the Bible, who DID NOT listen and submit to elders/authorities? What were the results?

Action Plan:

  1. What human authority do you struggle with the most to listen and submit to that you need to confess your sinful thinking and actions to God?
  2. What truth about God’s character or promise from God will help you submit to your imperfect authority? (See Question 3 on front for help)
  3. How will you pray for, thank, and serve joyfully this human authority this week?
  4. Share your personal action plan (part-1-3) with two men next to you. Share contact information then pray together and follow up by Wednesday April 25th.

Aaron Birk

B.S. – Accounting and Management, Purdue University M.Div. – Faith Bible Seminary

Aaron is married to Tirzah and has three children: Zemirah, Boaz, and Keziah. Aaron is the Pastor of Global Missions for Faith Church. He serves as a service Pastor for the 11:00 a.m. worship service at Faith West. Aaron oversees international students, missionaries, and short term missions. He is certified as a biblical counselor through the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors (ACBC).