Alleged Contradictions in The Bible – Part 8


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Alleged Contradictions In Scripture – Part 8

Not For That We Have Dominion Over Your Faith” Versus “Obey Them That Have The Rule Over You”

2Co 1:24  Not for that we have dominion over your faith, but are helpers of your joy: for by faith ye stand.

Heb 13:17  Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.

Introduction

Christ has made it abundantly clear that His ministers are not to lord it over His flock or take advantage of His flock in any way.

Mat 20:25  But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them.
Mat 20:26  But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister;
Mat 20:27  And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant:
Mat 20:28  Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.

If Christ’s children are not to “exercise authority upon” those in their charge, why then are those in the the Lord’s flock told to “submit [them]selves [to]… them that have the rule over you”? How can a leader “have the rule”, without “hav[ing] dominion over” others?

What does “have the rule over you ” mean? Does not that word ‘obey’ actually mean ‘be persuaded’? The answer is, yes, as Strong’s definition tells us:

G3982
πείθω
peithō
pi’-tho

A primary verb; to convince (by argument, true or false); by analogy to pacify or conciliate (by other fair means); reflexively or passively to assent (to evidence or authority), to rely (by inward certainty): – agree, assure, believe, have confidence, be (wax) content, make friend, obey, persuade, trust, yield.

If there is any doubt that this word means ‘to be persuaded’, let’s just look at how it is normally translated:

G3982
πείθω
peithō
Total KJV Occurrences: 58
persuaded, 16
Mat_27:20, Luk_16:31, Luk_20:6, Act_13:43, Act_14:19, Act_18:4, Act_19:26, Act_21:14, Act_26:26, Rom_8:38, Rom_15:14 (2), 2Ti_1:5, 2Ti_1:12, Heb_6:9, Heb_11:13
trust, 7
Mar_10:24, 2Co_1:9, 2Co_10:7, Phi_2:24, Phi_3:4, Heb_2:13, Heb_13:18
confidence, 6
2Co_2:3, Gal_5:10, Phi_1:25, Phi_3:3, 2Th_3:4, Phm_1:21
obey, 5
Rom_2:8, Gal_3:1, Gal_5:7, Heb_13:17, Jam_3:3
believed, 3
Act_17:3-4 (2), Act_27:11, Act_28:24
confident, 3
Rom_2:19, Phi_1:6, Phi_1:14
persuade, 3
Mat_28:14 (2), 2Co_5:11, Gal_1:10
trusted, 3
Mat_27:43, Luk_11:22, Luk_18:9
obeyed, 2
Act_5:36-37 (2)
persuading, 2
Act_19:8, Act_28:23
agreed, 1
Act_5:40
assure, 1
1Jo_3:19
friend, 1
Act_12:19-20 (2)
made, 1
Act_12:20 (2)
persuadest, 1
Act_26:28
put, 1
Heb_2:13
waxing, 1
Phi_1:13-14 (2)
yield, 1
Act_23:21

22 of the 58 total entries, almost 50 percent of the total entries are some form of the English word ‘persuade’. The word ‘obey’ accounts for only 7 entries, which would better be translated as ‘persuaded of’ as these verses demonstrate:

Act 5:36  For before these days rose up Theudas, boasting himself to be somebody; to whom a number of men, about four hundred, joined themselves: who was slain; and all, as many as obeyed [Greek: peitho – persuaded of] him, were scattered, and brought to nought.
Act 5:37  After this man rose up Judas of Galilee in the days of the taxing, and drew away much people after him: he also perished; and all, even as many as obeyed [Greek: peitho – were persuaded of] him, were dispersed.

But what do we make of the Greek word translated ‘rule’ in Heb 13:17 if Christ’s followers have no dominion over anyone?

Heb 13:17  Obey [Greek: peitho] them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.
Heb 13:18  Pray for us: for we trust [Greek: peitho] we have a good conscience, in all things willing to live honestly.

Is not this Greek word best translated as ‘leaders’ in this verse? The answer is that it is best translated as ‘leaders’, if indeed we esteem our leaders as such.

Here is Strong’s definition of the Greek word which is translated as ‘rule’ in Heb 13:17:

G2233
ἡγέομαι
hēgeomai
hayg-eh’-om-ahee

Middle voice of a (presumed) strengthened form of G71; to lead, that is, command (with official authority); figuratively to deem, that is, consider: – account, (be) chief, count, esteem, governor, judge, have the rule over, suppose, think.

Here are all 28 entries for this Greek word ‘hegeomai’:

G2233
ἡγέομαι
hēgeomai
Total KJV Occurrences: 28
count, 7
Phi_3:8 (2), 2Th_3:15, 1Ti_6:1, Jam_1:2, 2Pe_2:13, 2Pe_3:9
chief, 3
Luk_22:26, Act_14:12, Act_15:22
counted, 3
Phi_3:7, 1Ti_1:12, Heb_10:29
rule, 3
Heb_13:7, Heb_13:17, Heb_13:24
esteem, 2
Phi_2:3, 1Th_5:13
governor, 2
Mat_2:6, Act_7:10
think, 2
Act_26:2, 2Pe_1:13
thought, 2
2Co_9:5, Phi_2:6
account, 1
2Pe_3:15
esteeming, 1
Heb_11:26
judged, 1
Heb_11:11
supposed, 1
Phi_2:25

It is clear to anyone with the mind of Christ that the essence of this Greek word ‘hegeomai‘ is ‘esteem’ in the sense of ‘accounting’ someone as an esteemed ‘chief’, ‘leader’, ‘ruler’, or an esteemed ‘judge’.

Here is Heb 13:17 in the Concordant Version:

Heb 13:17 Be persuaded by your leaders, and be deferring to them, for they are vigilant for the sake of your souls, as having to render an account, that they may be doing this with joy, and not with groaning, for this is disadvantageous for you.

We will all “give account [of] every idle word”, (Mat 12:36, Mat 18:23, Luk 16:2, Act 19:40, Rom 14:12, Heb 13:17 (2), 1Pe 4:5), and we will also “render an account” of how we have served as overseers of the Lord’s flock. If we are not vigilant to “beware of the leaven of the Pharisees”, it will be none other than Christ Himself to whom we will “render an account” for how slack we have been in being “vigilant for the sake [of each other’s] souls”.

The next verse has this same Greek word, ‘peitho‘, translated as ‘obey’ in the King James, but notice it is not translated as ‘obey’ in this verse:

Heb 13:18 Pray concerning us, for we are persuaded [‘peitho‘, translated as ‘trust’ in the KJV] that we have an ideal conscience, in all wanting to behave ideally.” (CV)

This point was made in Tony’s study Thursday night:

Psa 91:11  For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.
Psa 91:12  They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone. 
Psa 91:13  Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.

Who has God given charge over His flock? We just read the answer to that question:

Heb 13:17 Be persuaded by your leaders, and be deferring to them, for they are vigilant for the sake of your souls, as having to render an account, that they may be doing this with joy, and not with groaning, for this is disadvantageous for you.

Paul gave this warning to the leaders and elders of Ephesus:

Act 20:28  Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.

Then he gives this admonition to Timothy:

1Ti 3:2  A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;
1Ti 3:3  Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous;
1Ti 3:4  One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity;
1Ti 3:5  (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)

1Ti 5:17  Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labour in the word and doctrine.

If we are not to have dominion over each other as the Gentiles, how are we to understand “a man know[ing] how to rule his own house” as a qualification for “tak[ing] care of the church of God”? Once again, the Greek has a different meaning than what the translators chose to express the mind of the spirit.

Here is Strong’s definition of the word translated as ‘rule’ here in 1 Timothy:

G4291
προΐ́στημι
proistēmi
pro-is’-tay-mee
From G4253 and G2476; to stand before, that is, (in rank) to preside, or (by implication) to practise: – maintain, be over, rule.

Here is the definition of G4253:

G4253
πρό
pro
pro

A primary preposition; “fore”, that is, in front of, prior (figuratively superior) to. In compounds it retains the same significations: – above, ago, before, or ever. In compounds it retains the same significations.

This is the definition of G2476:

G2476
ἵστημι
histēmi
his’-tay-mee

A prolonged form of a primary word στάω staō (of the same meaning, and used for it in certain tenses); to stand (transitively or intransitively), used in various applications (literally or figuratively): – abide, appoint, bring, continue, covenant, establish, hold up, lay, present, set (up), stanch, stand (by, forth, still, up).

Putting these two definitions together in the context of a proper head of a fellowship in the body of Christ or of a head of a household who ‘[has] his children in subjection with all gravity”, it is clear that Greek word ‘proistemi‘ literally means that a leader, whether in his home or in the house of God is to stand firm in the doctrine of Christ, “with all gravity”, just as he deals with his children, “with all gravity”.

What kind of leader of the house of God would let his own children disrupt a fellowship with loud, disruptive, rude and selfish behavior? Any so-called ‘leader’ who would allow such behavior in either his home or in the house of God is no one to trust with the “gravity” of the doctrines of Christ.

Speaking to Titus, Paul tells us this:

Tit 2:7  In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity.

The Greek word translated a ‘gravity’ here in Titus 2:7, is the same word translated in the same way in:

1Ti 3:4 One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; [Greek: semnotēs – sincerity, G4587]

It is the doctrine of Christ that is the subject in both Timothy and Titus. How a man’s children behave is simply an indication of whether that man is qualified to be an overseer of the Lord’s flock and whether he is qualified to detect and deal with “seducing spirits and doctrines of devils”, as Paul instructs Timothy in the very next chapter:

1Ti 4:1  Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;

“Carnal babes”, physical or spiritual, are never to be allowed to disrupt the fellowship of the body of Christ.

Rom 14:1  Him that is weak in the faith receive ye, but not to doubtful disputations.

A Godly, Biblical elder and a Godly leader knows he must “[be] vigilant for the sake of your souls, as having to render an account [to] the Chief Shepherd, and he is vigilant to protect his Lord’s flock from “grievous wolves” who rise up from within the flock of God:

Heb 13:17 Be persuaded by your leaders, and be deferring to them, for they are vigilant for the sake of your souls, as having to render an account, that they may be doing this with joy, and not with groaning, for this is disadvantageous for you.

This is what Paul has warned us about through his admonition to the same Ephesian elders  who he admonished to “look well to yourselves, and to the flock over whom the Lord has made you overseers”:

Act 20:28  Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.
Act 20:29  For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.
Act 20:30  Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.
Act 20:31  Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.

Paul’s three-year warning was ‘three years’ because God wants us to know that “watch [against] grievous wolves… of your own selves… speaking perverse things” is a process that continues to this day.

But if we have no dominion over the faith of our brothers and sisters in Christ, how will we be able to be good “overseers” of the Lord’s flock? To answer that question, let’s go back and see what had happened that caused Christ to tell his disciples they were not to exercise dominion over each other as the Gentiles do.

Here is what had happened between His apostles which provoked these verses of admonition:

Mat 20:20  Then came to him the mother of Zebedee’s children with her sons, worshipping him, and desiring a certain thing of him.
Mat 20:21  And he said unto her, What wilt thou? She saith unto him, Grant that these my two sons may sit, the one on thy right hand, and the other on the left, in thy kingdom.
Mat 20:22  But Jesus answered and said, Ye know not what ye ask. Are ye able to drink of the cup that I shall drink of, and to be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with? They say unto him, We are able.
Mat 20:23  And he saith unto them, Ye shall drink indeed of my cup, and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with: but to sit on my right hand, and on my left, is not mine to give, but it shall be given to them for whom it is prepared of my Father.
Mat 20:24  And when the ten heard it, they were moved with indignation against the two brethren.

The truth was that the apostles had all argued among themselves who would be the greatest among them in Christ’s kingdom as Mark reveals:

Mar 9:33  And he came to Capernaum: and being in the house he asked them, What was it that ye disputed among yourselves by the way?
Mar 9:34  But they held their peace: for by the way they had disputed among themselves, who should be the greatest. 
Mar 9:35  And he sat down, and called the twelve, and saith unto them, If any man desire to be first, the same shall be last of all, and servant of all.
Mar 9:36  And he took a child, and set him in the midst of them: and when he had taken him in his arms, he said unto them,
Mar 9:37  Whosoever shall receive one of such children in my name, receiveth me: and whosoever shall receive me, receiveth not me, but him that sent me.

Matthew adds a few more details of what Christ expects of those He sends as ministers of His flock:

Mat 18:1  At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus, saying, Who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven? 
Mat 18:2  And Jesus called a little child unto him, and set him in the midst of them,
Mat 18:3  And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.
Mat 18:4  Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 

Paul tells us he had no dominion over the faith of those who God gave to him to serve as their overseer:

2Co 1:24  Not for that we have dominion [Greek: G2961, kurieuō] over your faith, but are helpers of your joy: for by faith ye stand.

…and finally Peter tells us this:

1Pe 5:1  The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed:
1Pe 5:2  Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;
1Pe 5:3  Neither as being lords [G2634 katakurieuō] over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.

The alleged contradiction

If Christ’s ministers are not to lord it over the Lord’s flock, and if Christ Himself tells us we are not to exercise dominion over each other as the Gentiles do, then what is the function of the elders and ministers within the body of Christ? Did Christ have any authority over His apostles? Was Christ given any power over those who followed Him? Do Christ’s ministers have any power or authority over the Lord’s flock?

To answer these questions, let’s examine a few of the verses which appear to contradict the doctrine that God’s ministers have no “dominion over [your] faith”:

We are told this of Christ’s own style of teaching:

Mat 7:24  Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
Mat 7:25  And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
Mat 7:26  And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
Mat 7:27  And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.
Mat 7:28  And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine:
Mat 7:29  For he taught them as one having authority, [Greek: exousia, G1849] and not as the scribes. 

‘Hear and do these sayings of mine and you are building on a rock. Hear and do not these sayings of mine and you are building upon the sand.’ Christ certainly did speak as if He had great authority over all who heard His sayings.

Here is Strong’s definition of the Greek word which is translated as ‘authority’ in Mat 7:29:

G1849
ἐξουσία
exousia
ex-oo-see’-ah

From G1832 (in the sense of ability); privilege, that is, (subjectively) force, capacity, competency, freedom, or (objectively) mastery (concretely magistrate, superhuman, potentate, token of control), delegated influence: – authority, jurisdiction, liberty, power, right, strength.

These are the New Testament entries for that word exousia:

G1849
ἐξουσία
exousia
Total KJV Occurrences: 103
power, 61
Mat_9:6, Mat_9:8, Mat_10:1, Mat_28:18, Mar_2:10, Mar_3:15, Mar_6:7, Luk_4:6, Luk_4:32, Luk_5:24, Luk_10:19, Luk_12:5, Luk_22:53, Joh_1:12, Joh_10:18 (2), Joh_17:2, Joh_19:10-11 (3), Act_1:7, Act_5:4, Act_8:19, Act_26:18, Rom_9:21, Rom_13:1-3 (3), 1Co_7:37, 1Co_9:4-6 (3), 1Co_9:12 (2), 1Co_9:18, 1Co_11:10, 2Co_13:10, Eph_1:21, Eph_2:2, Col_1:13, Col_2:10, 2Th_3:9, Rev_2:25-26 (2), Rev_6:8, Rev_9:3 (2), Rev_9:10, Rev_9:19, Rev_11:6 (2), Rev_12:10, Rev_13:4-5 (2), Rev_13:7, Rev_13:12, Rev_14:18, Rev_16:9, Rev_17:12, Rev_18:1, Rev_20:6
authority, 28
Mat_7:29, Mat_8:9, Mat_21:23-24 (3), Mat_21:27, Mar_1:22, Mar_11:27-29 (4), Mar_13:33-34 (2), Luk_4:36, Luk_7:8, Luk_9:1, Luk_19:17, Luk_20:2 (2), Luk_20:8, Luk_20:20, Joh_5:27, Act_9:14, Act_26:10, Act_26:12, 1Co_15:24, 2Co_10:8, Rev_13:2
powers, 8
Luk_12:11, Rom_13:1 (2), Eph_3:10, Eph_6:12, Col_1:16, Col_2:15, Tit_3:1
right, 2
Heb_13:10, Rev_22:14
authorities, 1
1Pe_3:22
jurisdiction, 1
Luk_23:7
liberty, 1
1Co_8:9
strength, 1
Rev_17:13

This word ‘exousia‘, meaning power and authority, is used in connection with both God’s witnesses as well as the beast, each in his own predestined turn:

Rev 11:6  These [two witnesses] have power [exousia] to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy: and have power [exousia] over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all [seven – Rev 16] plagues, as often as they will.

Rev 13:7  And it was given unto him [the beast] to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.

So Christ tells us that ‘exercising dominion and authority upon others as the Gentiles do’, “shall not be so among you”, and yet we find that He Himself “spoke as one having authority”, ‘exousia‘, which is most often translated as ‘power’.

Mat 20:25  But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion [G263 katakurieuō] over them, and they that are great exercise authority [G2715: katexousiazō – pronounced kat-ex-oo-see-ad’-zo] upon them.
Mat 20:26  But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister;

Mat 7:29  For he taught them as one having authority [exousia, G1849], and not as the scribes.

Notice that the Greek word translated ‘authority’ in Mat 20:25, which “shall not be so among you”, is a different word from the word translated ‘authority’ in Mat 7:29.

Before we expose the fact that there is no contradiction at all in these two statements, let’s look at a few other of the places where this word ‘exousia‘, which is translated as ‘authority’ in Mat 7:29, appears:

Mat 9:1  And he entered into a ship, and passed over, and came into his own city.
Mat 9:2  And, behold, they brought to him a man sick of the palsy, lying on a bed: and Jesus seeing their faith said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee. 
Mat 9:3  And, behold, certain of the scribes said within themselves, This man blasphemeth.
Mat 9:4  And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, Wherefore think ye evil in your hearts?
Mat 9:5  For whether is easier, to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and walk?
Mat 9:6  But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power [Greek: exousia – authority] on earth to forgive sins, (then saith he to the sick of the palsy,) Arise, take up thy bed, and go unto thine house.
Mat 9:7  And he arose, and departed to his house.

1Pe 3:22  Who is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels and authorities [G1849, exousia] and powers [Greek: dunamis, G14111] being made subject unto him.

Here is Peter telling us plainly that this ‘exousia‘, this ‘power’, this ‘authority’ given Christ, places the “angels and authorities and powers… subject unto [Christ]”.

The question now becomes, has Christ given this same power and authority to His children? What does Christ Himself tell us?

Luk 10:19  Behold, I give unto you power [Greek: exousia, G1849] to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.

This brings us back to those verses brought up in Tony’s Thursday night study:

Psa 91:11 For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.
Psa 91:12 They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.
Psa 91:13 Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.

Nothing empowers “the enemy” more than his lies and false doctrines, typified throughout scripture by the serpent, the adder and the dragon.

Mat 15:9  But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

Col 2:22  Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men?

1Ti 4:1  Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;

Heb 13:9  Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines. For it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace; not with meats, which have not profited them that have been occupied therein.

Rev 12:9 And the great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: he was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.

Now if one of these “doctrines of devils” is injected into the body of Christ, Christ Himself has given His children power over all such powers and authorities, whether those powers are coming from without or from within His body.

How is it possible to have “power… over all the power of the enemy” and not have dominion over the faith of a brother or a sister? The answer to that question is:

Mat 18:15 Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.
Mat 18:16 But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.
Mat 18:17 And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.
Mat 18:18 Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

Christ is not just us as individuals. We are indeed Christ, but we are Christ only as a “many member[ed] body”:

1Co 12:14 For the body is not one member, but many.
1Co 12:15 If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body?
1Co 12:16 And if the ear shall say, Because I am not the eye, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body?
1Co 12:17 If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling?
1Co 12:18 But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.
1Co 12:19 And if they were all one member, where were the body?
1Co 12:20 But now are they many members, yet but one body.
1Co 12:21 And the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee: nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you.

Here is how Peter asserts this power and authority over all the powers and authorities when external governments attempt to affect the actions of the body of Christ from without:

Act 5:27  And when they had brought them, they set them before the council: and the high priest asked them,
Act 5:28  Saying, Did not we straitly command you that ye should not teach in this name? and, behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.
Act 5:29  Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.

Peter did not claim to be an infallible Pope, and he used the pronoun “We”. In other words, Peter asserted his power over the governments of this world in the same way Christ exercised that same power. Christ always spoke for His Father:

Joh 14:10 Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself: but the Father that dwelleth in me, he doeth the works.

Christ and Peter were both willing to give up their physical lives for spiritual life. As Christ told Pilate:

Joh 19:9  And went again into the judgment hall, and saith unto Jesus, Whence art thou? But Jesus gave him no answer.
Joh 19:10  Then saith Pilate unto him, Speakest thou not unto me? knowest thou not that I have power to crucify thee, and have power to release thee?
Joh 19:11  Jesus answered, Thou couldest have no power [G2634 katakurieuō] at all against me, except it were given thee from above: therefore he that delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin.

Paul demonstrates the power and authority we all have, and with which we are to deal with the doctrines of devils which attempt to infect the body of Christ from within or from without:

1Ti 6:3  If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness;
1Ti 6:4  He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings,
1Ti 6:5  Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.

2Ti 1:13  Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. 
2Ti 1:14  That good thing which was committed unto thee keep by the Holy Ghost which dwelleth in us. 
2Ti 1:15  This thou knowest, that all they which are in Asia be turned away from me; of whom are Phygellus and Hermogenes.

The apostle John tells us the same:

2Jn 1:9  Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.
2Jn 1:10  If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: 
2Jn 1:11  For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.

The difference between ruling the house of God in this age and ruling the nations during the millennium

In Rev 2:27 we are told what is promised to those who have been overcomers in this age. These promises would include those who have fallen “asleep in Christ” over the past two thousand years, as well as those saints who will still be living in these earthen vessels at the time of the first resurrection. This is what is promised to those who are granted to partake of that “blessed and holy… first resurrection” (Rev 20:6):

Rev 2:26  And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations:
Rev 2:27  And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father. 

The word translated ‘rule’ in this verse has much in common with what we read about a Godly ruler in this age, but it is a different word. Here is this Greek word, and here is Strong’s definition of this word:

G4165
ποιμαίνω
poimainō
poy-mah’ee-no
From G4166; to tend as a shepherd (or figuratively superviser): – feed (cattle), rule.

Here are all the entries for this word:

G4165
ποιμαίνω
poimainō
Total KJV Occurrences: 12
feed, 4
Joh_21:16, Act_20:28, 1Pe_5:2, Rev_7:17
rule, 4
Mat_2:6, Rev_2:27, Rev_12:5, Rev_19:15
feeding, 2
Luk_17:7, Jud_1:12
cattle, 1
Luk_17:7
feedeth, 1
1Co_9:7

This word actually appears only eleven times, because the word ‘cattle’ is a double count of ‘feeding cattle’ in Luk 17:7. Of these 11 entries it is 7 times translated as ‘feed, feeding, or feedeth’.

So the word obviously is associated with feeding God’s people. Whether they are converted or not, they are still His, and He feeds them all.

Eze 18:4  Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die.

The difference between feeding God’s children at this time and during the millennium is the same as the difference between feeding God’s children for forty years in the wilderness and feeding them at this time. In other words Christ is in the process of gathering His elect under His wings as a hen gathers her chicks at this time, whereas that is contrasted with being ruled with “a rod of iron” during the time of the millennium.

The phrase “a rod of iron” appear four times in the Bible, and three of them are in the book of Revelation:

Psa 2:9  Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel. 

Rev 2:27  And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.

Rev 12:5  And she brought forth a man child, who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and to his throne.

Rev 19:15  And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.

So the feeding of that period of “a thousand years” is for an entirely different purpose than the feeding of God’s flock at this time. The manchild of the woman of Rev 12 is given to rule the nations with a rod of iron, and we are told when that will take place:

Rev 20:1  And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key of the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand.
Rev 20:2  And he laid hold on the dragon, that old serpent, which is the Devil, and Satan, and bound him a thousand years,
Rev 20:3  And cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled: and after that he must be loosed a little season.
Rev 20:4  And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given unto them: and I saw the souls of them that were beheaded for the witness of Jesus, and for the word of God, and which had not worshipped the beast, neither his image, neither had received his mark upon their foreheads, or in their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years.

The overcomers of Rev 2:27 are the woman’s manchild who will rule with Christ with a rod of iron for a thousand years. The feeding of those who will be living at that time will not produce an overcomer because there will be no ‘wicked one’ to overcome during that period. Read this link for much more on this point:

http://www.iswasandwillbe.com/gods-purpose-for-the-millennium/

Conclusion

To conclude this study, I will again quote what Christ has commanded us to avoid:

Mat 20:25  But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them.
Mat 20:26  But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister;
Mat 20:27  And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant:
Mat 20:28  Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many. 

Mat 23:8  But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.
Mat 23:9  And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.
Mat 23:10  Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.
Mat 23:11  But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.
Mat 23:12  And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.

…and Paul’s doctrine accords with Christ’s words:

2Co 1:24  Not for that we have dominion over your faith, but are helpers of your joy: for by faith ye stand.

Yet we are told by the same Lord:

Luk 10:19  Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.

So there is no contradiction in telling us that we have no dominion over each other’s faith, while at the same time telling us that we are to submit ourselves to our leaders who must render an accounting of how they have been overseers of the Lord’s flock. While we have no dominion over each other’s faith, if we are in Christ, we do have “power… over all the power of the enemy”, and we have power and authority over all of His lying serpents and scorpions, and we are commanded to tread upon those lies, even if they are coming from “any man who is called a brother”, and we are to follow our instructions in Matthew 18:15-18, and cast him and his lies out of our fellowship before his leavening lies leaven the entire body of Christ:

1Co 5:11  But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat

When we follow the commandments given us in Matthew 18…

Mat 18:15  Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.
Mat 18:16  But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.
Mat 18:17  And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.
Mat 18:18  Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

…we will not be dominating each other’s faith because “the church” itself as a united and healthy body of one man, “the man Jesus Christ”, and He is dictating what is and what is not Truth, as we are instructed:

1Ti 3:14  These things write I unto thee, hoping to come unto thee shortly:
1Ti 3:15  But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.

If Christ is living His life within us, then we will have His mind and…

1Jn 1:6  If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:
1Jn 1:7  But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.

If indeed we are lying and are not in the Truth, then we have been given power over all the power of the enemy, and the gloves are off. It is incumbent upon every leader in the body of Christ, as the Lord’s angels (messengers), to “tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon”

Psa 91:11  For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.
Psa 91:12  They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.
Psa 91:13  Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.

If we are Christ’s, then we are also His angels:

Rev 17:1  And there came one of the seven angels which had the seven vials, and talked with me, saying unto me, Come hither; I will shew unto thee the judgment of the great whore that sitteth upon many waters:

Rev 19:10  And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.

Rev 22:8  And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which shewed me these things [same angel as the angel of Rev 19:10]
Rev 22:9  Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship God.

“If we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another”, and there will be no desire to attempt to dominate one another’s faith. If ever there is such a desire on the part of any brother, obedience to our instructions in Matthew 18, will purge us of the rebels:

Eze 20:38  And I will purge out from among you the rebels, and them that transgress against me: I will bring them forth out of the country where they sojourn, and they shall not enter into the land of Israel: and ye shall know that I am the LORD.

When the rebels are purged we will then “have fellowship with Him”, and we will be “of the same mind” to the extent that we will be able to say with the rest of the body of Christ:

1Jn 4:6  We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error.

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