Catholic bishop

A Catholic Bishop on “confused understanding of authority”

Without getting into theological Protestant/Evangelical/Charismatic vs Catholic debates, the point about “confused understanding” is well made.  Click here to read the article.

It has been my opinion that the same confusion exists regarding dealing with corrupted and illegitimate government.

As the article points out, the lack of clear understanding has “served in many cases to make the faithful lazy or complacent in their obedience”.    I would add that not only is that true in this issue of authority, it also exists within the purview of certain eschatalogical/prophetic beliefs that in some cases (not all) lead to a disengaging with society and a disengaging with the necessity to obey the rule of law; in the case of the United States, that would be the Constitution.  (And that would require those who are in government or profess to be in government to obey the Constitution as well.)

Again, I’m staying away from theological considerations here.  The point is well made that to blindly obey authority may in certain cases work against the purposes for which divinely instituted authority was created …  “the very obedience which was divinely-instituted by God to point all people to truth may actually be weaponized by some to serve their own interests and to lead the unsuspecting away from truth”.

Kudos to this Bishop for tackling this tough question. 

There were actually two mandates recorded in the New Testament.  One is cultural.  One is evangelical.

Matthew 28:17 And when they saw him [editing comment: in context, when they saw Jesus after his resurrection], they worshipped him: but some doubted.

18 And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:

20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.


Mark 16:14 Afterward he [Jesus] appeared unto the eleven as they sat at meat, and upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them which had seen him after he was risen.

15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.

17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;

18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.

19 So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, he was received up into heaven, and sat on the right hand of God.

20 And they went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following. Amen.


Luke 24:44 And he [Jesus] said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.

45 Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures,

46 And said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:

47 And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.

48 And ye are witnesses of these things.

49 And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high.

50 And he led them out as far as to Bethany, and he lifted up his hands, and blessed them.

51 And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven.

52 And they worshipped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy:

53 And were continually in the temple, praising and blessing God. Amen.



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