WHAT CHRISTIANS SHOULD KNOW (#WCSK) VOLUME II PART XIB: THE CHRISTIAN AND THE STATE

Picking up from last week

The Christian in subjection to the State

Romans 13:1-7 is perhaps the most specific and practical text in Scripture regarding what the Christian’s stance should be toward the State:

“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. Therefore whoever resists authority has opposed the ordinance of God; and they who have opposed will receive condemnation upon themselves. 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; 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. Therefore it is necessary to be in subjection, not only because of wrath, but also for conscience’ sake. For because of this you also pay taxes, for rulers are servants of God, devoting themselves to this very thing. 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.”

Granted, the hard part about applying these verses is that Paul never says that the “governing authorities” are righteous, that they have any idea about what the Bible says, or that they have any idea about who Christ is.

Regardless, here within the first two verses of Romans 13, we have the most succinct and pervasive answer to what the Christian’s relationship to the State ought to be: civil obedience. That is … continue reading.

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