One of the important factor in this chapter is learning to recognize spiritual authority when it is near your life. Humans create authority through power by hierarchies or degrees that put people above others, able to tell them what to do. Spiritual authority, however, is found in the power of someone’s character, the depth of their love, and the truthfulness of their insight. Real authority never demands submission because it isn’t about power, but transformation. Conversely, just becomes someone has authority within a religious system doesn’t mean they have authority from God.
Can you describe some characteristics that help you discern false authority from real authority? Think through the life of Jesus who had no earthly authority, and yet the people recognized that he spoke as one having great authority. What accounted for the difference between him and the Pharisees? How has this played out in your own life?