God and Government, Part 2

Yesterday we explored God as the eternal king and that nothing can change that fact. This may left you with the impression that you should have nothing to do with government because all governments are corrupt and they don’t always seek to do God’s agenda. Nothing could be farther from the truth. I hope you will continue reading to discover how you are to interact with government while still believing that God is the eternal king.

How to Interact with the Government

First and foremost we are called to submit to governing authorities. Paul puts it this way in Romans, “Let everyone submit to the governing authorities, since there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are instituted by God. So then, the one who resists the authority is opposing God’s command, and those who oppose it will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have its approval. For it is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, because it does not carry the sword for no reason. For it is God’s servant, an avenger that brings wrath on the one who does wrong. Therefore, you must submit, not only because of wrath but also because of your conscience.” (13:1-5 CSB)

However, the biggest reason we are to submit because we are instructed to by Jesus himself.

Then the Pharisees went and plotted how to trap him by what he said. So they sent their disciples to him, along with the Herodians. “Teacher,” they said, “we know that you are truthful and teach truthfully the way of God. You don’t care what anyone thinks nor do you show partiality. Tell us, then, what you think. Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar or not? ”
Perceiving their malicious intent, Jesus said, “Why are you testing me, hypocrites? Show me the coin used for the tax.” They brought him a denarius. “Whose image and inscription is this? ” he asked them.
“Caesar’s,” they said to him.
Then he said to them, “Give, then, to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.”

Matthew 22:15-21 CSB

Jesus makes it very clear that we are to submit to governing authorities, by giving them the respect and obedience that they deserve because of their God given authority.

The government has been ordained by God to preserve order and discipline. The government in this way works as God’s representatives on earth. Peter says it best, “Submit to every human authority because of the Lord, whether to the emperor as the supreme authority or to governors as those sent out by him to punish those who do what is evil and to praise those who do what is good. For it is God’s will that you silence the ignorance of foolish people by doing good. Submit as free people, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but as God’s slaves. Honor everyone. Love the brothers and sisters. Fear God. Honor the emperor.” (1Peter 2:13-17 CSB)

We are to honor those in authority over us and we honor them by submitting to them. However, we honor them in one other way and that is by praying for them. Paul says that this the way to live peaceful lives.

First of all, then, I urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for everyone, for kings and all those who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity.

1 Timothy 2:1-2 CSB

This means that we are to pray even for those governments who are oppressive and abusive. Why you ask? Because that is the instruction that you have been given by God.

You have heard that it was said, Love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven. For he causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.

Matthew 5:43-45 CSB

The world tells you hate your enemies and those who persecute you. Jesus tells us the exact opposite. So even if you live in a country that has a terribly oppressive government, you are still called to pray for that government and the leaders with it. Remember your prayers may be the ones that changes the heart of a brutal and oppressive leader.


You are called to submit to governing authorities because they have been appointed and ordained by God. You have also been called to pray for your government leaders regardless of how they treat you. You are called to be salt and light in the world and you can’t be the salt and the light if you choose to deliberately disobey those in authority over you.

For more keep coming back.

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