Appealing to Authority

God is not only approachable, but he wants us to appeal to him.
"Seek the LORD while he may be found; call on him while he is near. Let the wicked forsake his way and the evil man his thoughts. Let him turn to the LORD, and he will have mercy on him, and to our God, for he will freely pardon." Isaiah 55:6,7

"Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!" Luke 11:11-13

Therefore:
1. Human authority should be approachable with appeals
2. Those under authority should feel free to make appeals

God listens to those who obey him
"We receive from him anything we ask, because we obey his commands and do what pleases him." 1John 3:22

"The man with the two talents also came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with two talents; see, I have gained two more.’ "His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’" Mt 25:22,23

"It will be good for those servants whose master finds them watching when he comes. I tell you the truth, he will dress himself to serve, will have them recline at the table and will come and wait on them." Luke 12:37

Therefore:
1. Human authority should be particularly responsive to the compliant
2. Those under authority should consider whether their level of compliance is appropriate before making appeals

God is also influenced by appealing to his reputation
"Help us, O God our Savior, for the glory of your name; deliver us and forgive our sins for your name’s sake. Why should the nations say, "Where is their God?" Before our eyes, make known among the nations that you avenge the outpoured blood of your servants." Ps 79:9,10

"Although our sins testify against us, O LORD, do something for the sake of your name. For our backsliding is great; we have sinned against you." Jer 14:7

"O Lord, listen! O Lord, forgive! O Lord, hear and act! For your sake, O my God, do not delay, because your city and your people bear your Name." Dan 9:19

Therefore:
1. Human authority should consider how answering appeals affects their reputation
2. Those under authority should consider appealing to the reputation of their leaders

Such as appealing to his faithfulness
"For the sake of your name do not despise us; do not dishonor your glorious throne. Remember your covenant with us and do not break it." Jer 14:21

"God is not a man, that he should lie, nor a son of man, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill?" Num 23:19

But is not impressed with flattery
"These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me." Mt 15:8

Nor should human authority be influenced by flattery

On the appointed day Herod, wearing his royal robes, sat on his throne and delivered a public address to the people. They shouted, "This is the voice of a god, not of a man. Immediately, because Herod did not give praise to God, an angel of the Lord struck him down, and he was eaten by worms and died." Acts 12:21-23

Nor is he impressed or honored with mindless repetition of words
"when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him." Mt 6:7,8
Persistent whining  may get you what you want, but not necessarily what is best for you
"they soon forgot what he had done and did not wait for his counsel. In the desert they gave in to their craving; in the wasteland they put God to the test.  So he gave them what they asked for, but sent a wasting disease upon them." Ps 106:13-15

Those under authority should evaluate whether their discontentment has a legitimate basis before making an appeal

"Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, "Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you. So we say with confidence, "The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?" Heb 13:5,6
Those in authority must not abuse their authority, especially concerning those who are particularly disadvantaged.
"Do not take advantage of a widow or an orphan. If you do and they cry out to me, I will certainly hear their cry. My anger will be aroused, and I will kill you with the sword; your wives will become widows and your children fatherless." Ex 22:22-24'

"Look! The wages you failed to pay the workmen who mowed your fields are crying out against you. The cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord Almighty." Jas 5:4


The Berean Christian Bible Study Resources
Jul 29,2015