Authority can be faked. That's why impersonating a police officer is a crime. Sometimes the outward appearances of authority can be deceiving.
Spiritual authority can also be faked. Sometimes the outward appearances are there—perhaps a person's bearing suggests gravitas, substance, and passion. But that can be merely the way a person carries himself or herself, the result of a natural gift but not necessarily true spiritual authority.
Real spiritual authority has to do with the truth of the actual words being spoken, and the spirit of the person behind the words. Really, authority is about truth, honest-living truth. Words that are true carry weight because they are real. Dallas Willard has a great definition of reality—"Reality is what you can count on."
Authentic spiritual authority is what puts you in touch with reality.
Speaking with Authority
In the Gospels, Jesus taught "as one with authority," which the people noticed and contrasted with the teaching of the Pharisees. Interestingly, ...
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