“Our Government, A Minister Of God?”
- Verse 13) Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.
- When I look at this verse I immediately want to gag, puke, choke, or even fall over dead.
- Are you kidding me? Obey our stupid government? Have you seen what they have been doing lately?
- Just this past week the Supreme Court ruled that homosexual marriages must be accepted by all 52 of the United States. That alone would gag a maggot!
- This is another stepping stone in the pathway of destruction for America.
- God has commanded us to be “subject” unto higher powers. This word “subject” in the Greek “subjicere” has a military connotation of a soldiers absolute obedience to his superior officer.
- This is the same word used in Titus 3: 1…Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work,
- Scripture however makes ONE EXCEPTION to being subject to civil authority…
- Exodus 1: 15…And the king of Egypt spake to the Hebrew midwives, of which the name of the one was Shiphrah, and the name of the other Puah:
- Here is the civil law made by the government (Demand for killing Hebrew boys)…. 16) And he said, When ye do the office of a midwife to the Hebrew women, and see them upon the stools; if it be a son, then ye shall kill him: but if it be a daughter, then she shall live.
- Here is the disobedience of God’s children against the law….17) But the midwives feared God, and did not as the king of Egypt commanded them, but saved the men children alive.
- Here is the civil law made by the government (Demand of worshiping idols) Daniel 3:10…Thou, O king, hast made a decree, that every man that shall hear the sound of the cornet, flute, harp, sackbut, psaltery, and dulcimer, and all kinds of musick, shall fall down and worship the golden image: 11) And whoso falleth not down and worshippeth, that he should be cast into the midst of a burning fiery furnace.
- Here is God’s children in disobedience to the laws of the government …verse 12) There are certain Jews whom thou hast set over the affairs of the province of Babylon, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego; these men, O king, have not regarded thee: they serve not thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.
- Here again is the Governments law passed (Outlawing prayer to God)…. in Daniel 6:7… All the presidents of the kingdom, the governors, and the princes, the counsellors, and the captains, have consulted together to establish a royal statute, and to make a firm decree, that whosoever shall ask a petition of any God or man for thirty days, save of thee, O king, he shall be cast into the den of lions.
- Now the disobedience of God’s children of the civil law made….Daniel 6:10…Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime.
- Ah, finally a New Testament example (Demanding them not to preach or teach Jesus Christ)…Acts 4:19… And they (rulers of the Jews) called them (the apostles), and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. 19) But Peter and John answered and said unto them, Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye.
- Now back in our text of Romans 13…. Let us begin our study of being obedient to the four authorities God has instituted on earth… 1) Government over all citizens 2) The church over all believers 3) The parents over all children 4) Masters over all employees.
I. Government Over All Citizens
A) God ordained the Government
- Why did God establish law and order on earth? To reward good and restrain sin in an evil world.
- Let us note that these powers are… “ordained of God.”
- When we go against the government we go against God, with the exception of when the Government goes against God.
- Note Romans 13: verse 2) Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.
- The word “damnation” here is interpreted to mean… the judgement (jail, public service, or a fine) of the authorities will be given to the offender that brought it upon themselves by being disobedient.
B) Basic Rule of Government
- Government does not typically frown on good works, and smile on evil… note verse 3a) For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil.
- Otherwise we would be afraid of the authorities that God has ordained… Now note verse 3b…Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:
C) Governors are the ministers of God
- 4a) For he is the minister of God to thee for good. Did you get that? The police, the Sherriff, the Governors, and yes, even the president has made the laws for own good. It is to our benefit.
- You do the crime, you do the time…4b)…But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.
- 5) Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake. 6)For this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God’s ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.
D) Give Government What They Deserve
- In verse 7, you will note the word “render” which means… give to, hand over, present to. The Greek word means… to pay something owed (not voluntary).
- What do we owe to our authorities? Here’s a few things that Paul mentions…
- 7) Render therefore to all their dues:” (pay what you owe)
- “..tribute to whom tribute is due;” (Pay your federal and state taxes, fines, etc.)
- “..custom to whom custom; (tolls or taxes on food, cars, furniture, etc.)
- “..fear to whom fear; (show respect to the laws)
- “.. honour to whom honour. (honor their wishes)
- Verse 8) Owe no man any thing, (all our financial obligations must be paid)
- “.. but to love one another (Not just our brothers and sisters in Christ but non-Christians as well) . for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.
- Here is “the Law” regarding interpersonal relationships….
- 9) For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery,
- Thou shalt not kill,
- Thou shalt not steal,
- Thou shalt not bear false witness,
- Thou shalt not covet;
- and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. 10) Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.
E) It is time to wake up!
- 11) And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. 12) The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light.
- 13) Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. 14) But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.
- Let us continue in our study of the 4 authorities on earth…
II. The Church Over All Believers
- Jesus lays out the law for the church in Matthew 18:15…Moreover if thy brother Saved, born again child of God, church member, wife, husband, etc.) shall trespass (do wrong) against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. 16) But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.
- When a church member has done wrong to you, you are to try and handle it between the two of you or those involved PRIVATELY. Witnesses on both parties are to be present. The best witness is the pastor and wife.
- If nothing can seem to be resolved, or the problem gets worse and starts to affect the entire core of the church, then you are to bring it before the church (All church members). 17) And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.
- THIS IS NOT A TRIAL! The church is not to be on a witch hunt. We are not to condemn people for their actions, but rather to bring them back into the fold with a loving heart of reconciliation. God is in the restoration of a soul not the destruction.It is God who brings judgment upon the sinners, not us.
- Note God’s Law for those who refuse to do right… “…let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.” (A heathen meaning “unsaved” a publican meaning “un-desirable.”)
- How do treat a heathen and a publican? I believe that this must be as the “Parable of the lost sheep” mentioned in verses 12-14 of this same chapter…
- “… one of them be gone astray, doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains, and seeketh that which is gone astray?
- Verse 13 says…And if so be that he find it, verily I say unto you, he rejoiceth more of that sheep, than of the ninety and nine which went not astray.
- Verse 14 reminds us of God’s will on members who have gone astray…”Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish.
- You know, I can hear some people right now saying… “Bro. Ron these verses are talking about the lost people not church members.” WRONG!!
- This is the parable of the “lost sheep” not a “lost goat!” Sheep are God’s children, goats belong to Satan. Remember again the words of Jesus in Matthew 25:33… And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.
- This is the BIGGEST PROBLEM with many churches. When they have a dispute amongst the brethren, they leave the church. They are nothing but a bunch of big babies with small diapers, and swollen thumbs.
III. The Parents Over All Children
- The third authority that God has established on earth for us to be in subjection to and considered “His ministers,” are the parents.
- That’s right kids…your parents are ministers of God.
- Yep, and guess what scripture I’m going to?
- Ephesians 6:1…Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. This is an action or deed done. 2) Honour thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;) This is a heart matter of obedience to God.
- Here is the promise which is to your benefit…3) That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.
IV. Masters Over All Employees
- God has rules for the masters(Bosses) too… Colossians 4:1…¶ Masters, give unto your servants that which is just and equal; knowing that ye also have a Master in heaven.
- Ephesians 6:9… And, ye masters, do the same things unto them, forbearing threatening: knowing that your Master also is in heaven; neither is there respect of persons with him.
- Now then the rules for the employees are as follows…
- II Corinthians 8:21… Providing for honest things, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of men.
- Colossians 3:22… Servants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh; not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but in singleness of heart, fearing God:
- Do your best, and make your employer look good
- Romans 12:11.. Not slothful (NOT LAZY) in business; fervent in spirit (willing to work hard); serving the Lord; We are not really trying to please the masters of men but rather The Master (God).
- Proverbs 18: 9 ¶ He also that is slothful in his work is brother to him that is a great waster. If you are lazy on the job not working hard, then you are a “great waster” wasting the money of the company of whom you are employed.
With all these four governmental offices that are ministers of God Are you really faithful to all?