“Essential Reminders About Responding to Government”
September 18, 2016
Last week we began talking about “Election Essentials” — understanding what the Bible has to say about politics, the church, and you. We began that series by thinking about the role of government and the authorities in government — what is the role of government and what kind of character should leaders in government exhibit? We found from Romans 13 that the government’s primary roles are to:
- Restrain Evil
- Promote Good
- Avenge Evil
And with that we found that government has a mandate from God to do those things because God appoints every government and every official and they are all servants of Him. And because every governmental leader is a servant of God, we also saw that those leaders:
- Should Not be Evil
- Should be Good
- Should be Servants
We don’t typically think in those kinds of categories when we think about government, but that is how God thinks about government.
There is another way to think about government that is contrary to the way most Americans think about government and that is our response to government — how do we relate to the government? And Paul is exceedingly clear in this passage about how we should treat the government. Simply said,
Every believer should honor his government.
Or even more precisely, because God has ordained every government, every believer should honor his government. How will we honor the government? In these verses, Paul identifies three basic responsibilities the believer has to the government:
- Submit to the Government (vv. 1-2, 5)
- Submission is for all people (v. 1)
- Lack of submission is rebellion against God (v. 2)
- Submission is for maintaining a clear conscience (v. 5)
- Do What is Good (vv. 3-4)
- Pay Your Taxes (vv. 6-7)
Download the rest of this sermon from Romans 13:1-7.
The audio will be posted on the GBC website later today.