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 Reflections   # 1-3    # 4-7   # 8-11    #12-19  #20-25  # 26-30  #31-36  #37-43

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Three Types of Power in Theology—Stephen Mott
(Power = the potential to carry out one’s will over the resistance of others)
Power is good, and it belongs to God—Psalm 62:11 NSRV.

Defensive Power

Exploitive Power

Intervening Power

The power of being—a gift of God—of any individual or society, to defend one’s divinely created being from the contrary intentions of others.

The gift of power is fallen in all communities.  Power is used overtly and covertly to the disadvantage of the weaker neighbor.  Such use is evil and an assault upon God’s creation.

Intervening power reestablishes the power of being by thwarting exploitive power.  Its model and source is God, e.g., the ability of the weak together in resistance.

Exodus 3:7–8
Psalm 106:42
Ezekiel 22:1–12;

Matthew 12:28;
Colossians 2:15;
I Corinthians 4:20

Types of Operational Power—Robert Linthicum
(Power = the ability, capacity, and willingness of a person or group to act)

Unilateral Power
Power over people or constituency groups (institutions, governments, or contractors)

Relational Power
Power with other people or groups, to act
together, both parties can benefit)

Dominating Power
(autocratic, tyrannical)

Constitutional Power
(autocratic, hierarchical,
highly structured)

Mutual Power
(relative equality, shared interests)

Perhaps the most easily recognizable example is an absolute monarchy or a dictatorship.

Not necessarily governments.  i.e., many voluntary associations have a constitution and bylaws.

Could be individuals and/or groups.


Could be individuals and/or groups.


Ezekiel 22:1–12
Matthew 23:4–23

Matthew 27:11–26
Deuteronomy 16:18–20

I Samuel 18:1–5,
(David and Jonathon)

Mark 10:35–45;
Matthew 23:10–11


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