Friday, March 18, 2011

Authority to Bind and to Loose

Settling offenses

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.

Jesus gives us important advice in handling offenses. There are up to three steps; often people go to the last step first. We should do as Jesus says. If a brother offends, go to him first, do not gossip and tell everyone about his offense. If he will hear you, you have gained a brother.

Prov 16:27 An ungodly man diggeth up evil: and in his lips there is as a burning fire.
Prov 16:28 A froward man soweth strife: and a whisperer separateth chief friends.

Prov 6:12 A naughty person, a wicked man, walketh with a froward mouth.
Prov 6:13 He winketh with his eyes, he speaketh with his feet, he teacheth with his fingers;
Prov 6:14 Frowardness is in his heart, he deviseth mischief continually; he soweth discord.
Prov 6:15 Therefore shall his calamity come suddenly; suddenly shall he be broken without remedy.

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.

In two or three witnesses a thing is established. If the person does not hear us, then we go with two or three witnesses. If the offender ignores all, then he has a hardened heart.

Gal 6:1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.

Gal 6:7 Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.

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 a heathen man and a publican.

If the person has sinned publicly and will not repent in private, then the church should be told. If he ignores the church, he is not of God's people and should be removed. Too often people openly live in sin and no one goes to them.

1 Cor 5:3 For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed,
1 Cor 5:4 In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ,
1 Cor 5:5 To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

If he continues in sinful disobedience, then allow satan to deal with him. If he looses his life, God is judge as to his final fate, perhaps his Spirit still is in Christ Jesus. Do not tempt God and be foolish.

Bind and Loose

Authority given to the Church body

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.

This was in reference to Church discipline of someone by the church body. Binding is to tie or restrain, to fasten in chains, to be restricted.

2 Tim 2:9 Wherein I suffer trouble, as an evil doer, even unto bonds; but the word of God is not bound.

To loose is to untie a restraint.

Isa 58:6 Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?

Peter was given divine authority from Jesus upon his profession of faith

Mat 16:19 And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

This is not a power given only to Peter to be used carelessly or by his opinion, but it is a responsibility from God to be an instrument of God's Holy righteousness exercising judgement as to right and wrong . In Matthew 18:18, the authority was given to the disciples and to all who are in Christ Jesus to be used to exercise righteous authority in the handling of offenses in the church body. It is moral authority from God, not from man. We are to be instruments to release his authority, his laws, his morality in this world.

Authority given through the Holy Spirit

Joh 20:22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:
Joh 20:23 Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.

In a Spiritual application, it is to bind the devil so that the soul of a person may be freed from his power. Isaiah said it well in prophesying of Jesus:

Isa 61:1 The spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;

Mat 18:19 Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father which is in heaven. Mat 18:20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

This is a great promise; two or more agreeing together in God's Spirit, Jesus in our midst. This will move the hand of God. The presence of Christ Jesus leads us to ask wisely in his will by prayer. Think of your prayers; if two or three others are praying with you in the presence of the Spirit of God, will we be asking for foolish lusts? I think that there would be correction and counsel before foolish requests would be made.

Jas 5:16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

A final thought. Binding and loosing is not to be a magic show, or through the power of witchcraft or the power of man for personal glory. As the Holy Spirit is given to restrain sin and evil, so is the responsibility to bind, to forbid evil and to loose; to allow good to be manifest. We are to be responsible to God to be instruments of his divine will and by doing this we are to restrain evil and promote the goodness of God. There is good and there is evil, these are defined by God's word and the power of his will through his obedient people.

1Th 4:7 For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness.
1Th 4:8 He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also given unto us his holy Spirit.
1Th 4:9 But as touching brotherly love ye need not that I write unto you: for ye yourselves are taught of God to love one another.

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