Posted by: Billy Marsh | November 5, 2008

Timely Words from Peter and Paul

Scripture has plenty to say regarding God’s relationship to governments and world leaders and these below are two of the more familiar portions. I know everyone’s posting today on the election, so why try and be different just for the sake of being different. I thought I’d just post these two passages because I’ve been meditating on them quite a bit here lately for obvious reasons.

While talking about the future of the election a couple of weeks ago, I mentioned to someone that no matter what the outcome, we as Christians need to keep in mind that God is sovereign over this race and that whoever comes out ahead will be placed into power by God, which should be good news. That person responded, “You really believe that?” I replied, “That is what Scripture teaches us in Romans 13.” The person with raised eyebrows answered, “I didn’t know that.” I left that conversation trying to figure out how someone copes with a disappointing election day without a Christian worldview that encompasses all of life, or better yet, a God big enough to hope in?

So for those of you who may be in a state of despair or bliss, make sure you avail yourself to a healthy dose of God’s Word today about how to view this election, the future of America, and your role as citizens of both heaven and this country. Praise God that my hope is in Him and not in man, nor in government. If it was, then a state of utter hopelessness and disappointment would have overtaken me long before today’s presidential verdict. May you be comforted by God’s word to us in Romans and 1 Peter.

Romans 13:1-5 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.  2 Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.  3 For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval,  4 for he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer.  5 Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God’s wrath but also for the sake of conscience.

1 Peter 2:13-17  13 Be subject for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether it be to the emperor as supreme,  14 or to governors as sent by him to punish those who do evil and to praise those who do good.  15 For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people.  16 Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God.  17 Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the emperor.

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Responses

  1. While I absolutely agree with the Scripture at this point, we should be subject to the governing authorities and human institution, I would add that this does call us to be silent or passive in the presence of evil. In America, the real authority is the Constitution and the people. We should trust in God’s sovereignty and use every means legally available to us to confront and change the evil in society. Obviously, the most effective ways of doing that are through the sharing of the gospel and praying for our neighbors, nation and elected officials. Other means are also important, such as voting, protesting, educating those around us.

    vive’ le resistance
    Bryan

  2. Typo… it should read “I would add that this does NOT call us to be silent or passive…” Slow fingers and slower brain today…
    Bryan

  3. It’s amazing how the omission of one word defeated your whole purpose of writing that comment.

    I agree wholeheartedly with your thoughts. I think that now, more than ever, Christians need to have a sound, well-thought out view of “Christ and culture” so that we don’t remain silent, but stand for the gospel, which is about all of life, not just salvation.


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