The purpose of this paper is to biblically answer the following question:
Who has authority over believers in the church?
This paper will address a common misconception about authority in the local church, a much talked about issue in our day, and give a biblical rationale for what authority in the church is and from where it comes. Authority in the church has often been misunderstood or misapplied by Christians due to cultural and personal biases, basing views on incorrect translations of the sacred text, or by wrongly assuming that religious traditions regarding authority are supported by the Word of God.
Romans 13:1-4 (KJV)
Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.