Respecting the Civil Authority
“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.” Romans 13:1-2
Are Christians who express frustration and infuriation over the “ways and means” of President Obama foolishly raging against unregenerate policy, ideology, and spirituality? Are they respecting civil authority?
I’ve personally come across some who have lashed out against those who publicly express criticism and discontent toward the man and his office. The fears voiced by the concerned citizen, Christian or no, often take a sharp, heightened tone – one of fearful vigilance! We are those who had previously taken for granted that we live in a democracy, one in which the will of the people will have the final say.
Regardless, we must respect the office. Whether we agree with the man or even trust his loyalty to his oath, he is our president! We should not resort to cheap shots nor should we thoughtlessly slander the man. We must not resort to character assassination, despite what we may have heard through ‘the grapevine.’
We are to take the high road. We are duty bound to respectfully submit to the governing authority. For the Christian, blind and hasty rebellion is not an option.
Most importantly, we should not act against the One True Governing Authority. We must realize that Obama’s election was no accident. He is where God wants Him to be. This reality is where our submission ultimately lies.
For many Christians his presidency has been a sobering wakeup call. Our worldview is no longer tolerated. We should speak out. We must speak out!!! But we must strive to do it respectfully (and lawfully). I’ve failed to do so for too long, but it stops today! My Pastor opened my eyes to the extent of my folly with his excellent exposition on the 5th Commandment. We must remember that Paul, in his letter to the Romans, was instructing the Christian brethren to be in submission to the government of (a wicked pagan) ancient Rome led by the ruthless emperor Nero.
Regardless, we should remain engaged. If the majority of our representatives are failing to uphold their sworn duty to act lawfully and without malice and contempt for ‘We the People’, then they need to be voted out. Civil disobedience may be an option, especially if we are being forced to deny our Lord and Savior, but only as a last resort. We are to stand firm, but understand that God does not require our protection. He deserves our loyalty and devotion but in the end it is He who will take care of business.
We answer to a Higher Power and no earthly revolutionary crusade shall seize the day. This doesn’t mean we cannot defend ourselves but justice is not ours to claim!
We are at a crossroads. We may fear that we will lose all that we hold dear. But how swiftly do we forget that what should be our most prized possession is something that can never be lost… not for all eternity!
So where does this leave us? Should we continue to separate? Should the divide between church and state (in which we are estranged from and maligned by mainstream secular society) continue to grow infinitely wider?
It is clear where we must go. It is the place we should have been all along – down on our knees.
May the Lord of Heaven and Earth let His Mercy and Grace Shine Upon Us. Awaken our leaders and fill their hardened hearts with Thy Goodness and Love. May we come to know of Thy Holy Righteousness. Please Lord grant our President the wisdom and knowledge of Thy Truth. Fill his heart and soul with peace and repentance that Your Glory may be magnified and the Love of Jesus Christ be gratuitously treasured and shared above all else. May Thy Will Be Done! In Jesus Christ we pray… Amen!
No matter how we got here, it is God who has ordained it, and the future ultimately lies in His Perfect Hands!
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