There are only 2 lords. Some may think they are their own master and lord, but this is foolishness. People hurt them, steal from them, tax them, and eventually they die. They have no authority. There are only 2 lords. We can either serve God or the devil.
It is written:
B1 John 8:44 WEL You are of [your] father, the devil, and you want to do the lusts of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and he has not stood in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he tells a lie, he tells [it] from himself, because he is a liar and the father of it.
B2 2 Corinthians 6:17-18 WEL So then come out from among them. Be separate," says the Lord, "and do not touch [what is] unclean, then I will accept you, 18 And I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters," says the Lord Almighty.
B3 John summarizes: 1 John 3:10 WEL God's children and the Devil's children are plainly recognized by this: whoever does not do what is right is not of God, nor he who doesn't love his brother.
We are born as sinners: Ecclesiastes 7:20 NIV Indeed, there is no one on earth who is righteous, no one who does what is right and never sins.
We have evil thoughts and actions all the time: Genesis 6:5 NIV The LORD saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time.
Our heart is the source of our evil. The heart is speaking of our soul: Matthew 15:18-20 WEL But those things which come out of the mouth come from the heart; they defile a person. 19 "For out of the heart comes evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, sexual sins, thefts, false witness, and blasphemies. 20 "These are what defile a person but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile a man.
B1 Servants of sin. This servant is one who gives himself up wholly to another's will (Thayer’s). John 8:34 WEL Jesus answered them, "Very truly, I say to you that all committing sin are servants of sin.
B2 Sin is addictive. We are all addicts before salvation. Ephesians 2:3 WEL Among whom we also lived our life in the past, in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, by nature we were children of wrath even as others.
B3 We resist God by hardening out hearts. Hardening is the word for resisting.
C1 Psalm 95:8 NIV Do not harden your hearts as you did at Meribah, as you did that day at Massah in the wilderness.
C2 Hebrews 12:25 NIV See to it that you do not refuse him who speaks. If they did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, how much less will we, if we turn away from him who warns us from heaven?
These 2 lords have different styles of leadership. They are totally opposite of each other. It is either God’s method or the devil’s method. One is controlling and the other is with a measure of libertarian freedom.
Here is a good example of 2 styles of leadership.
B1 Controlling: Exodus 5:1-2, 5-6, 10, 15, 17 NIV Afterward Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and said, "This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: 'Let my people go, so that they may hold a festival to me in the wilderness.' " Pharaoh said, "Who is the LORD, that I should obey him and let Israel go? I do not know the LORD and I will not let Israel go." ... Then Pharaoh said, "Look, the people of the land are now numerous, and you are stopping them from working." That same day Pharaoh gave this order to the slave drivers and overseers in charge of the people: ... Then the slave drivers and the overseers went out and said to the people, "This is what Pharaoh says: 'I will not give you any more straw. ... Then the Israelite overseers went and appealed to Pharaoh: "Why have you treated your servants this way? ... Pharaoh said, "Lazy, that's what you are--lazy! That is why you keep saying, 'Let us go and sacrifice to the LORD.'
C1 A heavy yoke
C2 Rigorous service
C4 Decisions made from one person
C5 Not mercy, care, compassion, or love.
B2 Godly: Matthew 11:28-30 WEL "Come to me, all who are exhausted and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 "Take my yoke on you and learn from me, for I am meek and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 "For my yoke is easy to bear, and my burden is light."
C1 A light yoke
C5 Loves his servants
Godly leadership style can be applied in many different situations: marriage, pastoral, employer, family, etc. Controlling is not Christian, and Christian is not controlling.
Even though God is sovereign, for He can do whatever He wants, and no one can prevent it. God is sovereign and can degree. No one can resist. We read this in the Bible regarding things in...
C1 Colossians 1:17 NLT He existed before anything else, and he holds all creation together.
C2 God gave the order, and it was obeyed—perfectly. We read this in God’s command to the birds of the air in Revelation 19:17-21 NIV And I saw an angel standing in the sun, who cried in a loud voice to all the birds flying in midair, "Come, gather together for the great supper of God, so that you may eat the flesh of kings, generals, and the mighty, of horses and their riders, and the flesh of all people, free and slave, great and small." Then I saw the beast and the kings of the earth and their armies gathered together to wage war against the rider on the horse and his army. But the beast was captured, and with it the false prophet who had performed the signs on its behalf. With these signs he had deluded those who had received the mark of the beast and worshiped its image. The two of them were thrown alive into the fiery lake of burning sulfur. The rest were killed with the sword coming out of the mouth of the rider on the horse, and all the birds gorged themselves on their flesh.
B2 Humans. Here we read of an action performed that Jesus’s enemies did not want to do, but they did. They fell backwards: John 18:4-6 NLT Jesus fully realized all that was going to happen to him, so he stepped forward to meet them. "Who are you looking for?" he asked. "Jesus the Nazarene," they replied. "I AM he," Jesus said. (Judas, who betrayed him, was standing with them.) As Jesus said "I AM he," they all drew back and fell to the ground!
B3 The miracles done by the Lord Jesus show His power over creation, sickness, demons, people, and situations. In Matthew 14, Jesus feeds 5,000, walks on water, calms a storm, and heals the sick.
B4 Most of His covenants with people and nations are unconditional, but some are conditional.
C1 Conditional—Edenic: Genesis 2:16-17 NLT But the LORD God warned him, "You may freely eat the fruit of every tree in the garden-- except the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. If you eat its fruit, you are sure to die."
C2 Unconditional—Adamic: Genesis 3:15-17 NLT And I will cause hostility between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring. He will strike your head, and you will strike his heel." Then he said to the woman, "I will sharpen the pain of your pregnancy, and in pain you will give birth. And you will desire to control your husband, but he will rule over you." And to the man he said, "Since you listened to your wife and ate from the tree whose fruit I commanded you not to eat, the ground is cursed because of you. All your life you will struggle to scratch a living from it.
C3 Unconditional—Noahic: Genesis 9
C4 Unconditional—Abrahamic: Genesis 12:1-4;13:14-17; 15:1-7; 17:1-8.
C5 Conditional—Mosasic: This is the Law given to Israel on Mt Sinai. If you obey, these blessings will happen. If you disobey, curses will happen.
C6 Unconditional—Land: Deuteronomy 29:1-30:20.
C7 Unconditional—Davidic: 2 Samuel 7:11b-16 and 1 Chronicles 17:10B-14.
C8 Unconditional—New: Jeremiah 31:31-40 and Hebrews 8:6-13.
God decrees a measure of freedom
B1 We can choose:
C1 2 Samuel 24:12 NIV Go and tell David, 'This is what the LORD says: I am giving you three options. Choose one of them for me to carry out against you.
C2 Proverbs 1:29 NIV since they hated knowledge and did not choose to fear the LORD.
C3 Isaiah 56:4 NIV For this is what the LORD says: "To the eunuchs who keep my Sabbaths, who choose what pleases me and hold fast to my covenant.
C4 Matthew 7:13-14 WEL Enter in at the narrow gate, for the gate is wide and the road is spacious that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in there. 14 "Because the gate is narrow and the road difficult that leads to life and there are few who find it.
B2 We can resist:
C1 Nehemiah 9:30 NIV For many years you were patient with them. By your Spirit you warned them through your prophets. Yet they paid no attention, so you gave them into the hands of the neighboring peoples.
C2 Acts 7:51 NLT You stubborn people! You are heathen at heart and deaf to the truth. Must you forever resist the Holy Spirit? That's what your ancestors did, and so do you!
B3 We can cause the Holy Spirit to grieve: Ephesians 4:30 WEL Don't grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by which you are sealed for the day of redemption.
B4 We can quench the Holy Spirit: 1 Thessalonians 5:19 WEL Don’t quench the Spirit.
B5 We can lie to God the Holy Spirit: Acts 5:3 WEL Peter said, "Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit to keep some of the money from [selling] the land?
B6 We can test God: Acts 5:9 WEL Then Peter said to her, "How is it that you have agreed together to test the Spirit of the Lord? Look! See the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door and will carry you out."
B7 We can insult the Holy Spirit: Hebrews 10:29 WEL How much worse punishment, do you think, will be deserving the one who has spurned the Son of God and has considered the blood of the covenant, with which he was sanctified, an unholy thing and has insulted the Spirit of grace?
B8 We can blaspheme the Holy Spirit: Matthew 12:31-32 WEL Therefore, I say to you, 'All kinds of people’s sin and blasphemy will be forgiven, but a person’s blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.' 32 "Whosoever speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him, not in this age nor in the age to come.
Let us reverently serve God and enjoy His great leadership style. As we do, they us live by that same leadership style in all we do.
And remember, let us always choose life by choosing Yahweh and His ways. He will give us grace when we need it, if we ask. When it is time for judgment, there is no choice we can make. He is the judge who decides and who sentences.