What does “obey” really mean?

Obey in Hebrews 13:17
Greek Word Peitho : be persuaded

Hebrews 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.

Obey in 1 Peter 3:6
Greek word – Hoopakouo: be commanded

1 Peter 3:6 Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement.

Call husband Lord: ruler
1 Peter 3:6

Pastors don’t be Lords, be examples
1 Peter 5:3

1 Peter 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; 3 Neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being examples to the flock.

As you can see by the slightest dig into those scriptures, the word “obey” means different things depending on if it’s in the context of family or church.

Beyond that, government and business also have different rules of engagement.

Different Spheres of Authority Exercise Authority in Different Ways

Family Authority is exercised by headship and commanding.

Spiritual Authority is exercised by preaching and by persuasion.

Government authority is exercised by taxes and by the sword (weaponry) against criminals. (Romans 13:4-7)

Business activity is governed by government with rules of fair exchange, honesty, and covenant keeping.

Beware of people that try to mix the authority applications in different spheres.

Matthew 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.

26 But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister;

27 And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant:

Matthew 23

8 But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.

9 And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven.

10 Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.

11 But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant.

No preacher is your Daddy (Matthew 23:9). Their job is to persuade by preaching the Word, your job is to be persuaded by truth and submit to truth. Your families blessing comes from your obedience to God and commanding your family, not from sitting in the right pews.

No government runs your family. Your job is to obey the laws unless they violate Gods law. Their job is to manage their infrastructure and punish criminals, not supply your every need.

No pastor influences government with guns or politics- only by preaching and persuasion and prayer. You can’t save a nation by carnal warfare any more than you could save a soul by sticking them up and forcing them to repeat a sinners prayer.

No government has the right to limit anything a preacher talks about.

I could go on and on but I’ll finish up by saying this: God is the final authority over all the different spheres of authority. Everyone will have to reckon with HIM on how they used their authority.

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