WHY SUBMIT TO GOVERNMENT AUTHORITY WHEN SO MUCH OF IT IS CORRUPT AND MORALLY WRONG?

This verse is a guideline, not a rule without exception. Peter and John paid no heed to governments edicts in Acts 4. The Old Testament’s preeminent statesman, Daniel, refused to comply with government strictures on prayer (Daniel 6). When civil law clearly contravenes divine command, biblical precedent calls for appropriate civil disobedience.

Wheat is the point of Romans 13:1 then? Paul reminds us that government is to be respected and supported at all points possible, and that peaceful change is always the preferred choice of the Christian citizen. In some mysterious way, God sovereignly oversees the power of the state, and God’s work is therefore to be supported and protected. But the state is not God, and to give full compliance to the state is to make it an idol. Rebellion and revolution should be a Christian’s last option (or, as some world argue, never an option). Respectful, energetic participation in the affairs of state is part of Christian stewardship.

ROMANS 13:1 – 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.

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