Our Position of Authority as Believers

Our Position of Authority as Believers

by Kenneth Copeland

When you made Jesus Christ the Lord of your life, Colossians 1:13 says you were delivered from the power of darkness. The word power is literally translated “authority.” You have been delivered from the power, or authority, of darkness and placed into God’s kingdom. Jesus said, “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore...” (Matthew 28:18-19). That power was given to you as part of your inheritance in Christ Jesus. You have entered into this position of authority because you are in Him. 

The Word says that righteousness has come upon all men (Romans 5:18). You may ask, “Then why don’t all become righteous?” Because in order to receive it, you have to act on righteousness from the point of authority.
           
Nov. 2, 1962, I used my authority as a human being and made a choice. I made the decision to receive Jesus as Lord of my life. At that moment, the righteousness that had been upon me came inside me. I was made the righteousness of God in Christ. II Corinthians 5:21 says, “He hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.”
 
Jesus Secured Our Power and Authority
           
Jesus succeeded in securing all power by going to the cross, dying a horrible death, suffering the penalty for sin and defeating Satan in the pit of hell. He came to earth as a man for one reason: to recapture the authority Satan had stolen through Adam’s disobedience in the Garden. Jesus was called the last Adam (I Corinthians 15:45). After securing that power and authority, He freely gave it over into the hands of those who would believe on Him—you and me.
           
It is not enough for us to simply accept Jesus’ work at Calvary. We are held responsible for much more. Jesus’ words in Mark 16 were not intended for the early Church alone. His words are just as vital and real today as when they were first spoken.
           
Jesus appeared to His disciples after His resurrection from the dead. His words to them form the basic foundation for the work of the New Testament Church. It was at that time He delegated the authority to carry out that work. Beginning in verse 15, Jesus said: “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; 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” (Mark 16:15-18).
 
We Have Authority to Preach the Gospel
           
“Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” Every born-again believer has the authority and responsibility to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ in this earth. If you can’t go, you can send someone in your place.
           
“And these signs shall follow them that believe....” Notice who is to do all these things: them that believe. The signs will follow the believers who act in faith and boldly speak in Jesus’ Name. They shall cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; they shall lay hands on the sick. Believers are the ones with the power and authority to do these things.
           
Verse 20 says, “They went forth, and preached every where, the Lord working with them, and confirming the word with signs following.” God will confirm His Word, but first it has to be spoken forth. That is where you and I come in. God does not preach; He has given us the authority to do the preaching. God will not lay hands on the sick. He will bring the healing, but you and I as believers must lay hands on the sick by faith, believing God will perform His Word.
 
We Have Authority to Stand Against Satan
           
One of the most vital areas of the believer’s authority is his power to successfully stand against Satan. Ephesians 4:27 says, “Neither give place to the devil.” In Ephesians 6, the Apostle Paul describes the armor that we as believers are to wear in combat against Satan. He explains each piece of that armor. It is the armor of God. But not once does he say that God will put the armor on you or that God will fight the devil for you. You is the understood subject of these verses. He says, “[You] be strong in the Lord…. [You] put on the whole armour of God, that [you] may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. [You] take the whole armour of God, that [you] may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, [you] stand.” God has given you the power and the authority to stand against Satan and his destructive works. He has provided the armor, but it is your responsibility as a believer to put on that armor and stand against the devil. James 4:7 says, “[You] resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” The armor and the weapons are at your disposal. God is there with you to back His Word; but all that is worthless unless you take your position of authority and assume the responsibility to use what He has provided. You have the power and the authority to take the Word of God, the Name of Jesus and the power of the Holy Spirit and run Satan out of your affairs. Don’t pray and ask God to fight Satan for you. You are the one in authority. Take your responsibility and speak directly to Satan yourself and stand your ground firmly. He will flee!
 
We Are Seated With Him in High Authority
           
In Ephesians 1, Paul prayed a prayer for the body of believers in Ephesus. One part of that prayer was that they know “the exceeding greatness of his power to [those] who believe” (Ephesians 1:19). That exceeding great power is the same power that God used to raise Jesus from the dead and set Him at His own right hand in the heavenlies. Ephesians 1:21 tells us that Jesus is seated “far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named.”
           
The work God did in Jesus was supreme. He raised Jesus from the dead and set Him far above all other authority—not only in this world, but also in the heavenly world. Then verses 22-23 say that God has put all things under His feet and made Him head over the Church which is His body. Where are the feet? They are in the body. As believers, we are part of His body and we are seated with Him in that highly exalted place of authority. Praise God! Look at Ephesians 2: “And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins. Even when we were dead in sins, [God] hath quickened us together with Christ, and hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus” (verses 1, 5-6).
           
We are seated together with Him. Where? Far above all principality and power and might and dominion. As a believer, you have accepted the substitutionary sacrifice of Jesus at Calvary. Therefore, you are part of His body and are seated with Him in that heavenly place, equipped with the same power, the same authority that He has.
           
The great power that God worked in Christ when He raised Him from the dead is the same creative power of God that worked in you to make you alive when you were dead in your trespasses and sins. The moment you made Jesus Christ the Lord of your life, that same power was exercised on your dead, unregenerate spirit, causing it to be reborn in the likeness of God Himself. Any man who is in Christ Jesus is a new creation: old things have passed away, all things are new, and all things are of God (II Corinthians 5:17-18).
 
We Have the Power of God’s Word to Exercise Our Authority
 
And the same day, when the even was come, he saith unto them, Let us pass over unto the other side. And when they had sent away the multitude, they took him even as he was in the ship. And there were also with him other little ships. And there arose a great storm of wind, and the waves beat into the ship, so that it was now full. And he was in the hinder part of the ship, asleep on a pillow: and they awake him, and say unto him, Master, carest thou not that we perish? And he arose, and rebuked the wind, and said unto the sea, Peace, be still. And the wind ceased, and there was a great calm. And he said unto them, Why are ye so fearful? how is it that ye have no faith? (Mark 4:35-40).
 
Jesus spoke the words, “Let us pass over unto the other side,” and there was enough power and authority in those words to accomplish the job. One thing I want you to notice is that Jesus did not take command of the ship to see that His words were carried out. He walked to the back of the boat and went to sleep. Jesus delegated the authority to His disciples and they accepted it. But when the storm came, they were filled with fear that the boat would sink. Jesus had to carry out the responsibility of authority, which He had delegated to them, by rebuking the wind and the sea.
           
Do you see the parallel here? You are the captain of your ship. You have control over your own life—your spirit, your soul and your body. Jesus has delegated power, or authority, over Satan to you as a believer. You are to give him no place in your life. You are born of the Spirit of God. You are filled with the Spirit of God. You have been given the Word of God. Those three elements are enough for you to carry out your spiritual authority here in the earth. You don’t need any more power. You have all the power necessary. You simply have to exercise your authority. Jesus has already done everything necessary to secure the authority and power over sin, sickness, demons and fear. You have to employ the faith action to receive that authority and join forces with Him in this earth. You are the one to be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.
 
We Have Authority to Act as New Creations
           
Hebrews 2:14 says, “Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same.” Jesus partook of flesh and blood, so that you could partake of spirit and life. For you to partake of that spirit and life, you must take the responsibility of standing in the place of authority as the new creation in Christ Jesus that you are. You are born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the Word of God (I Peter 1:23). It was the Word of Almighty God that was injected into your spirit man to bring about the new birth in your life. When the Church was first beginning, Acts 12:24 described it as the Word growing and multiplying. The Word is in you, but you are the one who must be willing to allow it to work in you.
           
Ephesians 4:21-24 says, “If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus: That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; and be renewed in the spirit of your mind; and that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.”
           
You are the one in authority. It is your responsibility to put off the old man—the unregenerate man that you were before you accepted Jesus. The Holy Spirit does the actual work in you, but you must make the decision to allow Him to do it. God has never forced His will on any person. You put off the old man. You use the Word of God to renew your mind. You put on the new man, which is created in righteousness and true holiness.
 
We Can Minister and Walk From a Point of Authority
           
God’s power is in His Word. He is “upholding all things by the word of his power” (Hebrews 1:3). You need to learn to minister and walk from a point of authority. In His earthly ministry, Jesus said such things as “Be thou made whole.” “Take up your bed and walk.” Then Peter said to a lame man, “In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk” (Acts 3:6). He too ministered and spoke from a point of authority.
           
It’s time for you as a believer to begin to act that way. You have obtained an inheritance, and in that inheritance you have been given all authority. The God of the universe lives inside you! He lives and walks in you. Become God-inside-minded and you will begin to walk in this point of authority.
           
Keep right on building yourself up in your inheritance. You live in a world that is full of evil influences. Satan would like you to forget the reality of being born again and never realize your place of authority in Christ Jesus, because if you do, that power you walk in makes you absolutely dangerous to him. He has no defense against you when you walk in the power of God’s Word.           

When you see in the Word that you are in Christ Jesus, that you are in Him, then confess it with all your heart. Then you will be strong, standing in a point of authority and operating in your inheritance in Him. As you do this, the power of God will always be available to work in your behalf. Praise God!