Romans 13:1-7 – “Every person is to be in subjection to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those which exist are established by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists authority has opposed the ordinance of God; and they who have opposed will receive condemnation upon themselves. 3 For rulers are not a cause of fear for good behavior, but for evil. Do you want to have no fear of authority? Do what is good and you will have praise from the same; 4 for it is a minister of God to you for good. But if you do what is evil, be afraid; for it does not bear the sword for nothing; for it is a minister of God, an avenger who brings wrath on the one who practices evil. 5 Therefore it is necessary to be in subjection, not only because of wrath, but also for conscience’ sake. 6 For because of this you also pay taxes, for rulers are servants of God, devoting themselves to this very thing. 7 Render to all what is due them: tax to whom tax is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honor to whom honor.” NASU
I heard this again from the Lord in my time with Him this morning of having coffee and fellowship with Him. I again asked the Lord, “What do Christians do when the leaders follow paths that violate your Word?” He instructed my heart again this way.
SUBJECTION AND PRAYER:
We are whenever and wherever possible to be subject to and obey the laws of the human government. God does have all authority and He has a purpose for allowing leaders to be in place and sometimes that is simply to wake up the people from their slumber and apathy as has been the case time after time in Scripture. Yet, when their laws violate the directive of the Lord we must make a choice understanding the possible consequences of both man and God.
OBEY GOD RATHER THAN MAN:
Acts 5:27-32 – “When they had brought them, they stood them before the Council. The high priest questioned them, 28 saying, “We gave you strict orders not to continue teaching in this name, and yet, you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching and intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.” 29 But Peter and the apostles answered, ” We must obey God rather than men. 30 ” The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom you had put to death by hanging Him on a cross. 31 ” He is the one whom God exalted to His right hand as a Prince and a Savior, to grant repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins. 32 “And we are witnesses of these things; and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey Him.” NASU
When we have a directive from the Lord and human government instructs us to violate that directive we must make a choice. To disobey human government could mean incarceration in prison or even death but to disobey God is an even greater peril, at least for me. I’m not talking about opinion; I’m talking about a clear directive from the Lord and His word. If God has directed us, as Christians, we have only one choice and that is obedience no matter the cost or repercussions. What happens if Caesar asks for something that belongs to God?
RENDER UNTO CAESAR AND RENDER UNTO GOD:
Matthew 22:21-22 – “They said to Him, “Caesar’s.” Then He said to them, ” Then render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s; and to God the things that are God’s.” 22 And hearing this, they were amazed, and leaving Him, they went away.” NASU
If the government asks us for something that belongs to God how shall we give it? That would include everything from the above verses as well. If we make government a god that would violate the Ten Commandments and clear directive of God that I have no other gods before Him. I cannot give honor to something that is dishonorable and violates the sanctity of human life that would violate God’s revealed manner of life and principles. I may have cause to fear them even if I am doing right because they are opposed to God and His way, therefore, I fear God, not a man and the fear I have for God is a reverential fear not one of terror.
WHAT DO WE DO? We pray for those in leadership. We pray for their salvation. We pray that they make right decisions. We pray that their decisions bring the people to a place of repentance and returning to God. We pray that God gives His grace (mercy & divine enablement) to all those who follow Him to walk through the fire and not be burned; to walk through the flood and now drown. We pray for our brothers and sisters as well as the lost and dying. We pray for God’s Grace and Mercy to flood the land and maintain our integrity walking in the light of His Word and in total obedience to Him. And having done all to stand we stand fast and stand firm in the directives of our LORD and if it comes to crunch time we follow the path of the Disciples – “Whom shall we obey God or man?” The answer is GOD!
The Blessings of the LORD be upon you is my prayer and desire!