God’s Good Hierarchical Design

God's Good Hierarchical Design

April 20, 2021

The worldview du jour is flat. Rank and order are suspect. Some view all authority as tyranny. Others with authority really are tyrannical. The autonomous self reigns, having no responsibility for anyone else and no concept of submission to Christ in all things. Our egalitarian age does have a genuine complaint for human beings have regularly and often used their authority to do harm rather than good. But the solution is not to deconstruct the good hierarchy God has established. Rather we must align ourselves with both His order and His gracious purposes.

To that end I have submitted the following resolution for the 2021 Southern Baptist Convention in Nashville:

WHEREAS the church is to give glory, majesty, dominion, and authority to our God who is worthy now and forever (Psalm 48:1; Psalm 96:4-6; Jude 1:25; Revelation 4:11)

WHEREAS God has created a hierarchical creation both in heaven and earth, (Genesis 1:26-31; 2:18-23; 3:24; Isaiah 6:2-3; 1 Corinthian2 11:9; 1 Timothy 2:13-14) and God has raised Christ from the dead (1 Corinthians 15:3-5; John 2:22 Ephesians 1:20), seated him at his right hand far above divinely created rulers, authorities, powers, and dominions (Psalm 110:1; Matthew 26:64; Colossians 3:1 Hebrews 1:13; 8:1; 10:12; 12:2)

WHEREAS all authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Christ, and Christ has given the keys of the kingdom to the church to be wielded on earth (Matthew 16:19; 28:18)

WHEREAS Christians are to submit to their leaders (Hebrews 13:17), wives are to submit to their husbands, children are to obey their parents (Exodus 20:12; Ephesians 6:1; Colossians 3:20), citizens are to honor their rulers (Romans 13:1-2; Titus 3:1; 1 Peter 2:13-15), servants are to be subject to their masters with all respect (Ephesians 6:5-8; Colossians 3:22-25; 1 Timothy 6:1; Titus 2:9-10; 1 Peter 2:18), even the unjust ones (1 Peter 2:18-21), and such subjection is a gracious thing in the sight of God (1 Peter 2:19)

WHEREAS the hierarchical structure of God’s creation is seen in that there is no authority except from God, those that exist have been established by God (Romans 13:1), and whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed and will incur judgment for the authorities that exist are God’s servants (Romans 13:2)

WHEREAS the hierarchical structure of God’s creation is seen in that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of a wife is her husband (1 Corinthians 11:3)

WHEREAS the implications of God’s good hierarchical design are seen in that man was not created for woman but woman was created for man (1 Corinthians 11:9), and in the church, women are not permitted to teach or exercise authority over a man (1 Timothy 2:12; 1 Corinthians 14:34-35)

WHEREAS many in our culture are confused about God’s good hierarchical design and have even proposed tearing down God-established hierarchies, now be it therefore

RESOLVED, that the messengers of the SBC meeting in Nashville, Tennessee, June 15-16 2021, renew our commitment to God’s good hierarchical design in heaven and on earth; and be it further

RESOLVED, that we affirm every person’s equality as being made in the image of God (Genesis 1:27) while rejecting the egalitarianism of our age that demands each person be equal in every possible sense of the word; and be it further

RESOLVED, that we exhort husbands to sacrificially love their wives as Christ did the church (Ephesians 5:25; Colossians 3:19; 1 Peter 3:7), wives to submit to and respect their husbands (Ephesians 5:22; Colossians 3:18), fathers and mothers to raise their children in the discipline and instruction of the Lord (Deuteronomy 11:19; Proverbs 22:6; Ephesians 6:4; 2 Timothy 3:15), and children to obey their parents in the Lord (Exodus 20:12; Ephesians 6:1; Colossians 3:20); and be it further

RESOLVED, that we invite all Southern Baptists to rejoice in and encourage women learning in the church, and while so doing to maintain and renew our commitment to women learning quietly with all submissiveness (1 Timothy 2:11); and be it further

RESOLVED, that we uphold the truth that God, the supreme Lord and King of all the world, has ordained civil magistrates to be under him, over the people, for his own glory and the public good; and be it further

RESOLVED, that we be subject to civil authorities in all lawful things commanded by them, while respectfully not submitting to unlawful things commanded by them, having put all of our hope not in man (Psalm 118:8; 146:3), but firmly in the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, Jesus Christ (Deuteronomy 10:17; Psalm 136:3; Daniel 2:47; Matthew 28:18; Acts 10:36; 1 Timothy 6:15; Revelation 1:5; 17:14; 19:16).


Jared served in pastoral ministry since 2007, he has earned MDiv and PhD degrees from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. He is also a member of the Evangelical Theological Society. He and his wife Heather have seven children.
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