A Far Higher Authority - The Warrior's Journey®

A Far Higher Authority

Author: Chaplain, COL Scott McChrystal, USA (Ret.)

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“And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, ‘All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.’”  (Matthew 28:18-20) 

When I first entered the Army in 1985, one of the first things I was told by the drill sergeants was, “In the Army there is only one color and it’s green. We don’t want to hear about black and white and brown. From now on you’re all green.” They emphasized unity. 

But all of that changed in the 1990s. With the election of Bill Clinton as President the new mantra became, “Celebrate diversity.” The focus went from finding common ground to highlighting our differences. And ever since, America has been hooked on “multiculturalism.” Now, every culture is valid – except traditional American values. And no one should ever try to impose their own way of thinking on someone else – especially if it’s the Christian view. Therefore, if any believer attempts to persuade people to turn from the error of their way and to follow Jesus Christ, they’re likely to be scolded and sternly warned. 

But there’s a problem. A far higher authority commands us to “make disciples” of everyone, to teach them all that He has commanded us, and to baptize them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. “All authority has been given unto Me in heaven and on earth,” said Jesus. Therefore, all that He commands us outweighs any policy or regulation that restricts it. “We must obey God rather than man,” is what Peter told the authorities when they commanded the apostles to stop preaching in Jesus’ name (Acts 5:29).  Many voices will try to quell the work of Christ. But Christ trumps them all.   

Will this offend some people? Certainly, but offending Christ is a far greater concern. For Christ is the highest authority in the land and we must fulfill the commission He placed upon us. 

Offending people is even less of a consideration when we realize the outcome of remaining silent. If we withhold the gospel from others we are denying them the medicine that can heal their hearts and relationships. We are holding back the message that can save their souls. We must obey Christ rather man. 


  • With the command of Christ behind us and the probability of offending others ahead of us, what must we do to make our presentation of the gospel most effective? 
  • Aren’t wisdom, tactfulness, courtesy, and love essential to avoid obstructions to the gospel and unnecessary conflict? 
  • God grant us the skill of a surgeon to present the gospel in the most effective way.  

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