Jim Wilson is the retired director of Community Christian Ministries in Moscow, Idaho. He will be posting regularly, so check back in soon!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Show Respect for those in Authority

Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you. For he is God's servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God's servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience. This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God's servants, who give their full time to governing. Give everyone what you owe him: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor. Romans 13:1-7 (NIV)

Submit yourselves for the Lord's sake to every authority instituted among men: whether to the king, as the supreme authority, or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right. For it is God's will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish men. Live as free men, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as servants of God. Show proper respect to everyone: Love the brotherhood of believers, fear God, honor the king. 1 Peter 2:13-17 (NIV)

I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all men—the testimony given in its proper time. And for this purpose I was appointed a herald and an apostle—I am telling the truth, I am not lying—and a teacher of the true faith to the Gentiles. 1 Timothy 2:1-7 (NIV)

All of these texts are clear. They do not need to be taught the content. People need to be taught to obey the content.

How to obey:

1. Confess the sin of not obeying the law. That is disobeying God. The president, the king, and the governors are God’s servants.
2. Obey by doing good. That is God’s will. This obedience silences the ignorant talk of foolish men.
3. Show respect for everyone, love the brothers, fear God, and honor the president.
4. Pray for the president and all those in authority. There are two reasons for this:

a) That we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.
b) God wants all men to be saved. There seems to be a connection with (a).

If you are bummed about the election, confess it. As long as you are bummed you are not rejoicing in the Lord always.

1 comment:

PaweĊ‚ Bartosik said...

Dear Jim,

Thank you for your blog and ministry. Blessings and greetings from Poland.

Pawel Bartosik