We have no trouble believing Jesus Christ is King and has authority, but do we understand that, as our King, He has given kingdom authority to us, His followers? He said, “Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy…” (Luke 10:19). For the Christian, there’s no more exciting truth than what kingdom authority means to us.
“Authority” means the official right to do something. We have the right to exercise kingdom authority because Jesus gave us the official right (authority) over all the power of the enemy; we must learn to exercise it.
Where did Jesus get His authority?
He had to have it before He could give it to us. Authority, you see, is conferred upon you. After His crucifixion, burial, and resurrection, God Himself seated Jesus Christ at His right hand… “in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age, but also in the one to come” (Ephesians 1:20-21).
But that wasn’t the end of it. God put “all things under His feet and gave Him to be head over all things to the Church, which is His body…” (Ephesians 1:22-23).
“All things” means all. Jesus has that authority, and He has conveyed it to His Church—to you and me. We’re redeemed, made kings and priests before God. (See Revelation 1:5-6 and 1 Peter 2:9.)
But we don’t live like we have His authority, do we? We must learn how to exercise the kingdom authority Jesus Christ conferred on us.
You must learn three things about kingdom authority:
It was graciously given to Adam.
It was legally lost by Adam.
It was righteously regained by Christ—and given to the Church.
We were given kingdom authority, whether we’re aware or not.
God gave it to Adam and Eve when He put them in the Garden. They were to rule on this Earth, to be caretakers on His behalf. (See Genesis 1:26.) God set them in the Garden to govern Earth’s resources. (See Psalm 8:6.) We were made to have dominion here.
How did we lose it?
From that high estate of conferred dominion, we became “dead in our trespasses and sins.” Adam and Eve believed Satan’s lie, chose against God, and in that moment legally forfeited to Satan the power God graciously gave Adam to rule on Earth. We no longer have legal authority.
Can we ever get it back?
Well, “we” don’t win it back. This is why Jesus Christ left Heaven and came to earth: to regain what man handed over to Satan. It was legally lost; it must be legally regained.
A member of Adam’s race must be found to redeem us—one upon whom Satan has no legal claim. That’s why God became a man—the Lord Jesus came in human flesh.
Jesus had to be the virgin-born Son of God, not of Adam, yet still be a man, truly human, yet unquestionably divine. (See Hebrews 2:14.)
In the wilderness, (See Matthew 4 and Luke 4.) Satan tried to tempt Jesus to sin. Just one sin, and redemption’s whole plan collapses. But Jesus overcame Satan there.
Then Satan made his worst mistake ever: thinking Jesus would never take on the sins of the world on the cross. But on dark Calvary, Jesus cried, “It is finished.”
Satan marshaled all the forces of Hell to keep Jesus in the tomb. If God accepted His death as full atonement for sin, it meant Satan’s legal power was broken. When Jesus arose, Satan’s dominion came crashing down.
In His death and resurrection, Jesus triumphed over Satan, Hell and the grave. God the Father seated Jesus at His own right hand… “far above all principality and power and might and dominion” (Ephesians 1:21).
Just before ascending to Heaven, Jesus said: “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations….” (Matthew 28:18-19).
Jesus gloriously gave His authority to the Church. It is ours. (See Luke 10:19.)
Jesus Christ is today seated far above all other authorities and powers. Once the Church grasps the truth of what Jesus did on the cross, how He spoiled principalities and powers, redeemed mankind, and broke Satan’s hold on the human race, then all Heaven will break loose.