Have confidence in your leaders and submit to their authority, because they keep watch over you as those who must give an account. Do this so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no benefit to you.Hebrews 13:17 NIV
The author of Hebrews wrote this to a specific body of believers at a specific point in time. Yet what he had to say is applicable to believers everywhere across time and space. Have confidence in your leaders. Submit to their authority.
There are several things to note in this admonition. First of all, I believe that this is referring to those that God has gifted as leaders and put over us. There are many in our world today who take this position for themselves. It may sometimes be challenging to determine the difference, but we should make the effort.
Have confidence in your leaders. If God has put them in this place, he will also lead them to accomplish his purpose. Trust them that they are leading you in the appropriate direction. Even when faced with challenges and obstacles along the way.
Submit to their authority. In doing so you are submitting to God’s authority. When you resist God’s appointed authority you are really resisting God.
Our leaders keep watch over us. They have a responsibility to guide us in the way we should go. And to correct us when we stray.
Our leaders are accountable to God. They are answerable, not to me, but to the one who appointed them. If they fail to watch over us, it is God they will answer to. And if they do keep good watch over us, their reward also comes from God.
And, finally, it is to my benefit to submit to them. Because that makes their job easier and they will able to be more effective in the task God has appointed to them.
Submit to your leaders. Honor them as those who keep watch over you. And pray for them. Theirs is not an easy task.