Friendships in Christ
The Authority of Christ Today
"For you know what
commandments we gave you by the authority of
the Lord Jesus."
1 Thessalonians 4:2 Page
should anyone believe what you tell them?
Why do you believe some people, and not
others? For most people, they tend to
believe in a person. For example, many
people in the United States focus upon
Barack Obama, and because they like him,
they believe what he says. Jesus
completely rejects such trust in men.
We should not believe the Republican,
Democrat, Independent, or any other
politician based upon who said it. Who
said it means nothing, what they said makes
all the difference. Furthermore, just
saying something does not make it true.
A vast gulf can separate words spoken from
truth lived. The issue will always be
truth. Are people telling the truth?
Christians must not be caught up in a cult
of personality, but rather focus upon the
truth of God.
Jesus taught the truth,
lived the truth, and referred to Himself as
the only truth by which people may know God
the Father (John 14:6, page 1684).
Rather than placing trust in fallible
people, our faith should be placed only in
God and His truth. In this case, God
gave commandments by the authority of the
Lord Jesus. We must pattern our lives
on the basis of God's commandments for
living, not upon some man's ideas or
beliefs. Jesus criticized the
religious leaders of His day for exalting
the traditions of men above the commandments
of God (Matthew 15:3, page 1527; Mark 7:5,
page 1570). Jesus said:
"Neglecting the commandment of God, you hold
to the tradition of men." He further
explained: "You are experts at setting aside
the commandment of God in order to keep your
tradition" (Mark 7:8-9, page 1571).
The ministry team delivered the commandments
of God to the Thessalonians, and they
received them as what they truly were, not
the words of men, but the word of God (1
Thessalonians 2:13, page 1847). Only
Jesus had the words of life (John 6:68, page
1667), and His disciples will always follow
His commandments because they love Him (John
14:15, page 1685). By God's grace, He
gave us the words of life, so that we would
live to righteousness with Him eternally.
The authority of Jesus Christ as God, with
all His perfections, stands behind the
message of the Gospel. He speaks the
truth, in love, for love, and with love, so
that we may live in love with Him.
So, we learn some more about building strong
friendships in Christ.
Strong bonds of friendship form when we
receive the Word of God, and keep His
● Strong bonds of friendship grow when
we encourage each other by the authority of
Christ to live in His truth and love.
● We harm our bonds of friendship when
we place men, or the traditions of men,
above the Word of God.
Application for Today
Today, I want to be put the Word of God
above every other authority in my life.
I want to stop following any tradition of
man that conflicts with the commandments of
God. Who will command your life today?