Week 1 – Jeff Maness – June 30, 2019
Are we reflecting the glory of God in the way we respond to our government as Christians? The truth is, the Bible tells us exactly how we should respond. Our response to the government is not based on who’s in the White House, it’s based on Who’s in my heart!
The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable moment in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more.
Romans 11:36 36 For everything comes from him (God) and exists by his power and is intended for his glory. All glory to him forever! Amen.
Big Idea: As Christians, our response to the government is not based on who’s in the White House, it’s based on Who’s in my heart.
Big Question: How should Christians respond to the government?
Main Scripture: Romans 13:1-7
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Romans 13:1a 1 Everyone must submit to governing authorities.
Romans 13:1b-2 1a For all authority comes from God, and those in positions of authority have been placed there by God. 2 So anyone who rebels against authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and they will be punished.
1. Submit as to God
Submit = I place under. This word denotes that kind of submission which soldiers render to their officers. It implies “subordination;” a willingness to occupy our proper place, to yield to the authority of those over us. — Albert Barnes
1 Peter 2:13-14a 13 For the Lord’s sake, submit to all human authority—whether the king as head of state, 14 or the officials he has appointed.
The word “submit” that is used here, does not designate the “extent” of the submission, but merely enjoins it in general. The general principle will be seen to be, that we are to obey in all things which are not contrary to the Law of God. When the laws command any moral wrong, then it is our duty to refuse submission. — Albert Barnes
Romans 13:3-5 3 For the authorities do not strike fear in people who are doing right, but in those who are doing wrong. Would you like to live without fear of the authorities? Do what is right, and they will honor you. 4 The authorities are God’s servants, sent for your good. But if you are doing wrong, of course you should be afraid, for they have the power to punish you. They are God’s servants, sent for the very purpose of punishing those who do what is wrong. 5 So you must submit to them, not only to avoid punishment, but also to keep a clear conscience.
2. Seek to do good
Jeremiah 29:7 7 And work for the peace and prosperity of the city where I sent you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, for its welfare will determine your welfare.
Romans 13:6-7 6 Pay your taxes, too, for these same reasons. For government workers need to be paid. They are serving God in what they do. 7 Give to everyone what you owe them: Pay your taxes and government fees to those who collect them, and give respect and honor to those who are in authority.
3. Show others our godliness
1 Timothy 2:1-2 1 I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. 2 Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity.
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