Perhaps it is the case that there are ultimately only two sources of authority:
1. One is rooted in how much pain and violence one is willing and able to inflict. It is the shimmering god-awful "authority" of the sacred executioner, the mafia don, the gang leader, the terrorist, the Führer.
2. The other is the authority that corresponds to the degree of pain and violence one is willing to endure for the sake of another, for God and God's children.
Because those who endure pain and hardship and violence have Christ as a co-sufferer, their authority will always outshine and ultimately outlast the authority that accrues to those who lord it over those in thrall to them.
What will separate us from the love of Christ? Will anguish, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or the sword? As it is written: "For your sake we are being slain all the day; we are looked upon as sheep to be slaughtered." No, in all these things we conquer overwhelmingly through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor present things, nor future things, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. - Romans 8:35-39The victory over evil has already been accomplished, ours is just the privilege of living in light of the victory.