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Discussion Forum : Scriptures and Doctrine : Submitting to Governments

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richrock
Member



Joined: 2012/2/27
Posts: 93
UK

 Submitting to Governments

Hi all,

Quick question - I'm just a bit puzzled here.

Romans 13:1-2 states:
"Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment."

Okay. I kind of get that, but I hear many Christians saying that we should obey the authorities unless it contradicts God's law, yet this scripture seems to say the opposite.

Confused... Could anyone help me understand which is correct and why?

 2012/10/21 16:11Profile
AbideinHim
Member



Joined: 2006/11/26
Posts: 3537
Louisiana

 Re: Submitting to Governments

The scripture is clear that we do not obey authorities when they make laws that oppose the will of God. What are the pastors going to do when it becomes against the law to preach that homosexuality is a sin? Because that time is coming sooner than you might think.


"Then went the captain with the officers, and brought them without violence: for they feared the people, lest they should have been stoned. And when they had brought them, they set them before the council: and the high priest asked them, Saying, Did not we straitly command you that ye should not teach in this name? and, behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this man's blood upon us. Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men. The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree. Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins. And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him. When they heard that, they were cut to the heart, and took counsel to slay them. Then stood there up one in the council, a Pharisee, named Gamaliel, a doctor of the law, had in reputation among all the people, and commanded to put the apostles forth a little space; And said unto them, Ye men of Israel, take heed to yourselves what ye intend to do as touching these men. For before these days rose up Theudas, boasting himself to be somebody; to whom a number of men, about four hundred, joined themselves: who was slain; and all, as many as obeyed [3] him, were scattered, and brought to nought. After this man rose up Judas of Galilee in the days of the taxing, and drew away much people after him: he also perished; and all, even as many as obeyed [4] him, were dispersed. And now I say unto you, Refrain from these men, and let them alone: for if this counsel or this work be of men, it will come to nought: But if it be of God, ye cannot overthrow it; lest haply ye be found even to fight against God. And to him they agreed: and when they had called the apostles, and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name. And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ. (Acts 5:26-42).


_________________
Mike

 2012/10/21 16:50Profile









 Re: Submitting to Governments

Quote:
Romans 13:1-2 states:
"Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment."

Okay. I kind of get that, but I hear many Christians saying that we should obey the authorities unless it contradicts God's law, yet this scripture seems to say the opposite.

Confused... Could anyone help me understand which is correct and why? richrock.




The passage from Romans does indeed make it clear that every one who takes the Lord’s name must be subject to all authority on the earth. It is also clear that this means to obey. It is also clear that if we do not obey all authority we will suffer as a consequence. Finally it is clear that this suffering is God’s will because all authority belongs to and therefore comes from God Himself.


The passage does not say that it will always be possible to obey all authority. Neither does it say that all authority will be righteous in its demands.

Nevertheless if an authority demands of us an unrighteous obedience and we disobey we will have to accept the consequence regardless without complaint. This is suffering for the sake of righteousness. It is the most difficult thing because not only may this mean suffering physically but it will mean being reckoned a lawbreaker as well. This will mean humiliation without justification before men. In short it will mean sharing the sufferings of Christ. The only Roman law that Jesus broke was to agree with Pilate that He was indeed the King of the Jews. This was the torment that the Roman Cohort held against The Lord. It was the mockery that the Jews cried to The Lord on the Cross. It was the inscription above The Lord head whilst He was being crucified. It was the only legal basis for the Lord sentence of death.


We are required to obey all laws and submit to all authority.


As it has been said in the above post Peter recognised that he must in the end obey God. Yet Peter also had to accept the beating which came from it. He did so with rejoicing. Perhaps today we need to learn the same attitude being law abiding where it is possible and obedient without complaint of consequence when we cannot but obey God. Any other attitude will become lawlessness.

 2012/10/21 17:06





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