A Bad Topic

This morning as I read through Romans 13 I came across some verses that have helped me to see what my attitude toward government should be.

 

Read the following passage and then we’ll look at a few highlights.

 

Romans 13:1-7  “Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. 2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: 4 For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil. 5 Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake. 6 For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God’s ministers, attending continually upon this very thing. 7 Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.”[1]

 

  • Verse one says “every soul” – So we know that we are included in the group that is commanded to be “subject” or under the control of “higher powers,”  the government.
  • Verse one goes on to tell us that no “power” or authority to rule exists but that which comes from God. (Dan 4:17)
  • Verse 2 says that when we resist or go around or cheat the government then we are actually resisting, or cheating God and it doesn’t stop there but tells us that those that live this way will bring the judgment of the government and possibly God’s upon their life.
  • Verse 3 assures us that the powers that be are not a hindrance to good works but to bad.
  • The Bible calls the government “the minister of God” in verse 4 twice and verse 6 once.  That is huge!  Who are we to disobey God’s ministers?
  • Verse 5 says we must be subject to the government for our own safety and so that we can have a clear conscience.  Is your conscience clear? Maybe you can’t sleep at night because you have been resisting God’s minister, the government.
  • Verse 6,7 – Pay your taxes and fulfill all your other obligations required by the government.  Don’t think you are wasting time and money – no you are giving it to God’s minister.  You are doing the right thing!

 

As Warren Weirsbe says “The best citizen ought to be the Christian citizen.”[2]  This is definitely true especially when we realize it is “God’s ministers.”

 

How is your standing before God’s minister, the government?  What steps can you take to get it right?


[1] The Holy Bible: King James Version. 2009 (Electronic Edition of the 1900 Authorized Version.) (Ro 13). Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.

[2] Wiersbe, W. W. (1997). Wiersbe’s expository outlines on the New Testament (402). Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books.

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