Truth or Dare (Part 2)
Lesson 3: The Truth About Authority
1. To expose students to the Scriptural truth about authority
2. To help the students understand why authority should be respected
3. To give them practical insight into respecting authority
Guidance, Grumbling, Leadership, Respect, Submission, Truthfulness
OPENING PRAYER (5 to 10 minutes)
GROUP BUILDING (15 minutes)
Who Is Leading Whom? (Game) Click here
GETTING STARTED (10 minutes)
• How many of you like being told what to do or someone having authority over you?
• Why is it that we don’t like authority figures?
• Who are some examples of authority figures with whom you have difficulty getting along?
• How are authority figures similar to our game of “Who Is Leading Whom?”
It can sometimes be hard to accept that someone has authority over you. Sometimes it feels like they are abusing their authority, and it can be hard to take. But no one is exempt. Even the President of the United States answers to Congress, the American people, and the Supreme Court. You have parents, teachers, coaches, and grown-ups at church who have the authority over you.
God is the ultimate authority, and He has plenty to say about respecting authority.
DIGGING IN (25 minutes)
1. Do you think people your age have a hard time respecting authority? Why/why not?
2. What does it take for you to respect authority?
Sometimes we demand respect from someone before we’ll return that respect. While this is common and easy to understand, it’s not necessarily right. You may have parents, teachers, or other authority figures who are not good at their respective jobs (or at least you might feel that way) but the Bible says that we should still respect them.
Our government might not be “Christian,” but we should still respect the laws that don’t cause us to deny Christ.
Respect isn’t something you wait to give until someone proves themselves; it’s something you’re commanded by God to give certain people.
A. RESPECT GOVERNMENT
One of the things the Bible is clear about is respecting our government.
Read Romans 13:1 and 1 Peter 2:13
1. Do you think people respect government very much?
2. Do you think part of respecting government is following its rules?
3. Should you only obey the laws you like or all of them if you’re going to respect the law?
4. Do you have to agree with a government to respect it?
5. Where do these passages claim the government’s authority originates?
6. What do you think respecting the government looks like for a teenager?
B. RESPECT PARENTS
That’s right, we’re supposed to respect our parents.
Read Ephesians 6:1-2 and 2 Timothy 3:2
1. What do these passages say about respecting/honoring your parents?
2. Why is hard sometimes to respect them?
3. Do you think you should respect your parents if they ask you to disobey God? Should you obey them?
We can joke around about the trials of a teenager, but for some of you, it’s no joke. Some of us here may have abusive parents, or maybe our parents have abandoned us. For some of you, respect may be the most difficult feeling you can produce when concerning your parents. But that doesn’t exclude you. The command to respect your parents remains.
C. RESPECT CHURCH LEADERS
Our church leaders have authority over us as well.
Read Hebrews 13:17
1. What kind of leaders does this passage discuss?
2. Do you respect your church leaders?
3. Why do you think it would be important to respect these people?
4. How could not respecting them be a burden to them?
5. What would be the impact if you did not submit to them?
6. What does this look like practically? What does it mean to respect your youth minister, a volunteer, or other leaders at your church?
Respect is a hard thing to come by. People have a hard time accepting the fact that people have authority over them. But, as you can see, the Bible is clear that respecting authority is important—it’s demanded of us by God as the right thing to do.
MAKING IT REAL (15 minutes)
Some of you are more disrespectful than others. But the challenge for all of us is the same—we need to respect those who have authority over us. Some of you need to repent of your disrespectfulness first.
To complete this lesson, have the class quietly complete the following workbook activity.
How Much Respect?
Please answer the following questions according to where you are at right now.
• How respectful do you think you are, on a scale from one to ten? (1 equals not at all respectful. 10 equals
CLOSING PRAYER (2 minutes)
Let's get into smaller groups, and confess to one another our struggles regarding respect. Then, as a group, pray that we can all be more respectful as God wants us to be.