Leadership and Authority in the Church: What It Is and Isn't
Even when the xenos threat is eliminated at great cost , it will not be long before another Tyranid migration emerges to take advantage of the situation. A fully mobilised Tyranid Hive Fleet strikes shock, awe, and terror into even the most stalwart of humanity 's defenders. But not regulating who attends public meetings like home churches. Age of the Imperium. Blokker Holding is als familiebedrijf niet beursgenoteerd. Footwashing was a means of refreshment which revitalized.
It is still wise to be cautious in bringing even a Sanctioned Xenos to a human world; those who will understand the nature of the mark and the notion of Sanctioning are still a minority, and a xenos creature will spread only fear and anger by its presence amongst the common masses of mankind. It holds all Tyranids in a psychic bond that enables them to act together in perfect unison. Rather, they invade to harvest valuable biomass and feed their insatiable hunger. This is what makes the Tyranid species such a threat: However, we also believe the incident never should have happened.
The scattered outposts of Mankind would be preyed upon for millennia by various xenos species, pushing the human race towards eventual extinction until the Emperor of Mankind revealed his existence and began his galaxy-spanning Great Crusade to reunite humanity under a single interstellar government. The Emperor believed that only in unity -- unity bought at nearly any price -- could Mankind survive a galaxy that was far more dangerous than any human savants of an earlier age would have believed.
At its inception, the Imperium of Man made one of its core objectives the extermination of all alien life forms that posed any threat to humanity. Thus many species suffered extinction at the hands of the newborn Imperium which perpetrated one act of genocide after another. This would also apply to the majority of human civilisations encountered during the course of the Great Crusade like the Interex and Diasporex civilisations, which had founded cultures where alien and human populations had successfully integrated into a single whole.
Diplomacy was rarely tried, and was more often offered only to other human civilisations encountered in the course of the Great Crusade. Certain aliens, such as the Eldar , who were more technologically advanced than the Imperium were often simply left alone so long as they did not threaten human interests.
The Imperium of Man's extreme xenophobia and outright call for genocide against all other intelligent species in the galaxy is in some ways justified by the sheer hopeless belligerence of most xenos races encountered since the Great Crusade.
Almost all alien races encountered by Mankind since the Emperor first began to push his forces out amongst the stars have been so malevolent or aggressive toward humanity that any form of negotiation or parley often proved impossible.
Other instances, such as during the Imperium's first encounter with the human-alien alliance known as the Diasporex , would end in violence because of the inherent distrust the Imperium had for all alien civilisations even if there was common ground that could be found. This policy of unconditional hatred persists into the modern Imperium more than 10, standard years after the Great Crusade ended in the blood and fire of the Horus Heresy.
In that time, many more alien civilisations have been discovered and destroyed regardless of threat level, culture, disposition, or technology. These sentiments of xenophobia have been reinforced by the Imperial Creed , which preaches that Mankind has a divinely-inspired manifest destiny to be the sole ruler and inhabitant of the galaxy.
Humanity alone, the Imperial Creed teaches, is the sacred form of intelligent life chosen by the God-Emperor to spread out amongst the stars. All other intelligent life is to be reviled as an abomination and an affront to the God-Emperor's plan for Mankind. Much of the Imperium, led by the religious fervour of the Adeptus Ministorum , believe in the extermination of all aliens, even those that are entirely peaceful species.
When the masses are stirred to such fear and fanaticism, they demand destruction over any kind of cooperation or coexistence. This might seem like a harsh measure, but it is an age where ignorance is a virtue and brute force is used to solve a multitude of problems; the dangers of failing to act are too unthinkable to elicit any other response. It has not become this way without reason; most aliens encountered by Mankind are hostile and devious, and some have proven as ruthless and ambitious as humanity itself.
To them, there is no room in the galaxy for the Imperium. Despite the many xenos dangers across the Imperium, there are those who, in their ignorance or desperation, are willing to make pacts with aliens. Sometimes this is seemingly innocuous: So, concealed within teeming Hive Worlds , xeno-tech draws high prices in illicit markets, while the carnivorous Kroot have been paid in flesh to fight alongside planetary defence forces. Each is divided into sectors , which are areas of space.
The sectors in turn consist of subsectors , each containing a number of star systems which in turn are made up of individual worlds. These divisions and subdivisions are levels forming an administrative hierarchy. The higher ranks in this system are usually combined with a basic planetary governorship as well as interplanetary duties.
This system is the means by which the Imperium maintains control of the separate planets that comprise it. The borders of the Imperium are marked by several uncharted regions of space which lay beyond the range of the Astronomican , areas which are frequently viewed with uncertainty and fear by Imperial citizens.
Following the Thirteenth Black Crusade and the resurrection of Roboute Guilliman , much of the Imperium's northwestern frontier became cut off from Terra. Becoming known as Imperium Nihilus , Guilliman has launched a new Crusade to reclaim these worlds. Due to its vast magnitude, the Imperium can afford for entire worlds to become specialised places where a majority, perhaps even the entirety, of the population is devoted to a single task. This could be heavy industry, military training, manufacturing, mining or agriculture.
Planet-wide dedication serves to simplify logistics and increase outputs. Because of the distances involved and the unstable nature of Warp communication, Planetary Governors generally operate very autonomously. This allows quite a lot of variation in the regional governments. Most governorships are hereditary, but it is also possible for a planet to have an elected Planetary Governor, a tyrant Governor who rules by force of arms, or anything in between.
So long as the Governor fulfills his duties to the Imperium, his rule will generally be accepted by the higher authorities. A rare few Planetary Governors preside over feral or medieval worlds where the Imperium has not, for whatever reason, seen fit to introduce modern technology. These Governors are often isolated from their subjects, sometimes even living on orbital installations, only interfering to control mutation and psykers, as well as to collect the modest tithes these planets pay.
The Imperial duties of a Planetary Governor include paying the planetary tithe to the Administratum, controlling psykers, mutation and heresy among the population, defending the planet and putting down rebellions against the local government and thus against the Imperium. A serious responsibility is the maintenance of an adequate planetary defense force capable of defending the planet in the event of invasion.
The Planetary Defence Forces abbreviated to PDF are expected to defeat attacks from minor foes, and in the case of major invasions to hold out until reinforcements arrive, which could take a period of months or even years. A relatively small number of Imperial worlds are not ruled by a Governor, but are overseen by an alternate organisation such as the Adeptus Terra, Ecclesiarchy, Imperial Guard or Space Marines.
The Imperial creed maintains that all of humanity must be brought into and kept within the Imperium. Several Imperial organisations are permanently occupied with suppressing any possibility of rebellion before they have a chance of developing.
The common worship of the Emperor holds mankind together and instills loyalty towards the Imperium. Rebellions and uprisings on Imperial planets nonetheless remain constant. The nature and causes of a rebellion can fall into several categories: In the most insidious of cases the rebellion may be brought about by xenos or Chaos influence.
In the more prosaic cases however, a government established through rebellion is not necessarily opposed by the Imperium, so long as it accedes fully to Imperial authority. Besides outright war, there are many ways a rebellious world may be brought back into the Imperium. With its more secretive organisations, the Imperium is fully capable of carrying out subvert methods of restoring Imperial rule, including assassination, popular agitation, economic sabotage and terrorism.
Sometimes a rebellion can be subdued by the removal of a single individual. Pro-Imperial groups or other anti-government forces can be infiltrated or supported.
While types of regimes and cultures differ greatly from world to world, there are commonly shared values and policies maintained by the Imperial central government. The worship of the Emperor as a god and the need for subject planets to pay the Imperial Tithe are rigidly enforced by agencies such as the Ecclesiarchy , Adeptus Arbites , and the feared Inquisition.
Besides aliens, Mutants and psykers also face ruthless persecution [3c] , though certain types of Abhumans such as Ogryns and Ratlings are tolerated. The Imperium views their violently xenophobic, anti-mutant, and anti-psyker policies as necessary for the survival of the human race amid a galaxy of violent aliens and dark gods.
In addition to aliens, mutants, and psykers, most forms of robotics and artificial intelligence are outlawed in the Imperium. This taboo was inherited from human civilizations of the Dark Age of Technology , who were nearly annihilated at the hands of the legendary Iron Men.
Low Gothic is the common tongue of the Imperium, spoken on most Imperial planets as a first or second language. This essay is a unified statement of policy from the leaders at Xenos' College Ministry on September 20, During recent discussions with members and each other, we have discovered confusion and possible misinterpretation of our position on leadership and authority boundaries.
To avoid further confusion and to bring glory to God, we have consulted the elders and come together in a combined leaders' meeting to compose our thoughts on this key subject. The elders have reviewed the paper, and have affirmed these findings as accurately reflecting Xenos policy. This paper can be freely disseminated as members see fit. Although the heart of leadership according to Scripture is servanthood Mark This authority comes from God and is delegated to leaders for the good of the church.
The following verses reflect the clear teaching that leaders should be respected and obeyed when operating within their legitimate sphere of authority:. You know that the household of Stephanas were the first converts in Achaia, and they have devoted themselves to the service of the saints.
I urge you, brothers, to submit to such as these and to everyone who joins in the work, and labors at it. Such men deserve recognition. Now we ask you, brothers, to respect those who work hard among you, who are over you in the Lord and who admonish you.
Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work. Live in peace with each other. Encourage and rebuke with all authority. Do not let anyone despise you. Remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you.
Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith. Obey your leaders and submit to their authority. They keep watch over you as those who must give an account. Obey them so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no advantage to you. Of course the Bible's teaching on obedience does not mean the church can outlaw dissent when expressed legitimately. When members conscientiously disagree with a direction advanced by leaders, they have the right to express dissent.
This dissent should be expressed in a way that safeguards the unity of the church, is respectful, not bitter, and in love. Xenos elders have declared that we will respect a right to dissent in our church as long as it is expressed maturely. The paper, "A Vision for Christian Servanthood" details steps members can take to assure their dissent is effective and constructive. Any effort taken by leaders to harm the reputation or exclude legitimate dissenters from the life of the church would clearly be wrong.
Leaders must be mature enough to accept the fact that others may disagree on judgment calls, even within their own church, without reacting in hurt or becoming insecure. Dissent is different than rebellion. Rebellion involves attempting to set people in the church against the leadership.
This is also division and schism, which are sinful and subject to admonition and even formal discipline. The elders have written a paper on our rules for church discipline, called "Rules for Church Discipline". In addition to these points, we would remind people of key qualifications from another of the earlier elders' papers on authority in the church:. All delegated authorities are under God's authority.
This is why, when scripture addresses those under delegated authority, it also addresses those in delegated authority in the same passage and reminds them of their responsibilities before God.
This accountability includes demonstrating to their colleagues that they conduct their ministry in accordance with ministry standards established by the eldership and the Servant Team. When Xenos leaders are out of line, members can contact the office to complain to the grievance board, to the relevant sphere leader, or to the elders.
They will launch an investigation of leadership errors or misbehavior and give members full opportunity to be heard. God does not require us to obey leaders outside the legitimate sphere of their authority. This is why wives are urged to "be submissive to your own husbands" - not to all men 1 Pet.
For the same reason, it is inappropriate for parents to tell their adult children whom they must marry, or for civil authorities to tell their citizens what religious beliefs they must hold, or for church authorities to tell Christians what jobs they may take. In connection with point 2, we remember that Xenos has been troubled at times in its past by leaders and members assuming that church leaders have authority in areas where they do not.
As a result of such misunderstanding, members or leaders have at times tended to make leaders into surrogate parents who regulate areas of life completely unrelated to church ministry. In the Bible, the church is sometimes called the family of God, but we should remember that the parent is God the father--leaders are brothers and sisters like the rest. We notice two exceptions: However, the similarity with mothers is the affection they have for their children, and the similarity to fathers was in the way they were "exhorting and encouraging and imploring" the Thessalonians.
These actions suggest pleas, not commands. As an example, we know of cases where members have asked leaders to "hold them accountable" for their spending. Home church leaders agreed, and began going over the member's checkbook each month checking whether they were living up to a budget. Later, when the member came to resent the leader's oversight of this area, they left the church and reported to a cult watch group that Xenos leaders went over their checkbook each month, including assigning them how much to give to the church!
Of course, the member failed to mention that he had requested this assistance, resulting in an embarrassing and misleading picture of Xenos leaders.
However, we also believe the incident never should have happened. When the cult watch group later leveled the charge that Xenos leaders oversee budgets including giving commitments, the elders looked into it and found that they were unable to deny the charge, much to our embarrassment.
In this case, leaders had allowed themselves to be drawn into inappropriate authority. Similar problems have arisen in the past, often from well-intentioned efforts to help members in areas such as dating and marriage, sex counseling, career counseling, relationship counseling, and social practices, such as whether to go to certain bars, to attend certain concerts, or to watch certain movies. Leaders should have declined to accept such parent-like roles, even if asked, and instead insisted that members learn to think through these issues for themselves.
The elders have addressed the problem repeatedly at workers' meetings and servant team meetings over the past 15 years, but not recently. Their message has been that leaders need to exercise care to avoid implying that their authority extends further than it really does, or letting members press them into using authority in areas that are not legitimate. Members may be accountable to each other in a more general sense. For instance, I may ask my friend, "How is it coming with your eating problem.
Another example would be cases where a brother has asked a friend to install software on his computer that blocks internet porno, and to keep the password secret. This seems legitimate, because the helper is not actually monitoring or supervising the other's browsing. The key is to consider what sort of accounting would be parent-like, or more appropriate for children than adults.
We are zealous to avoid illegitimate expansion of leadership authority, not only because of our reputation as a church, but also because of the negative effect such expansion has on our members. Members who wrongly depend on leaders to "hold them accountable" or make decisions for them never learn the self-discipline and mature decision making that should characterize good disciples of Jesus Christ.
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What is Leadership Authority? Furthermore, Acts never narrates the early church observing such a ritual, while it does so many times with baptism and communion.
However, it is rumoured that the Ordo Xenos of the Inquisition had identified possible appearances of this xenos species as far back as the 35th Millennium.
When we sin xenos dating Christians, we are still forgiven by God, but our sensitized consciences xenos dating defiled and we get accused best christian dating site in kenya Satan. His point is that if he lives a lifestyle of serving love, this is the definition of greatness to which they should aspire. Despite the many xenos dangers across the Imperium, there are those who, in their ignorance or desperation, are willing to make pacts with aliens. Leaders can point out obvious problems arising in certain relationships, but it is up to the individual xenks pick his or her own friends. The following verses reflect xenos dating clear teaching that leaders should be respected and obeyed when operating within their legitimate sphere of authority:.
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