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Government

I usually do not write in the middle of the day. But God has laid something very heavy on my heart and I have been in study since then. So any of you wondering what as Christ followers are we to do- here is what I learned. I will start with Romans 13:1-7. v. 1-2 Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. Also for reference Titus 3:1-2- Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good, to slander no one, and always to be gentle toward everyone. And for a third reference 1 Peter 2:13-17- Submit yourselves for the Lord's sake to every human authority: whether to the emperor, as the supreme authority, or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right. For it is God's will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish people. Live as free people, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as God's slaves. Show proper respect to everyone, love the family of believers, fear God, honor the emperor. The first thing that is apparent to the scriptures written above is that we are to follow the laws of the earthly rulers. So no offense no matter who is sitting in that white house, it tells us not to slander them. It doesn't say you can slander if you don't like. Nothing happens that God has not authorized. We as Christians need to remember that. Therefore, those politicians are in power because God has allowed it. And yes God can and will use the ungodly for his purpose. People who are following God, will have good leaders; but those who reject God will have bad leaders. So, what does that say about us Christ Followers? Something to think about. v 3-4: For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended. For the one in authority is God's servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God's servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. These verses tell us the purpose of the Government. They are to be God's servant to keep people from doing wrong. But what do you do if the government is corrupt? Well, it clearly states they are God's servants and if they are not following God then they need to held accountable. If the government is not fulfilling it's God-given purpose the Christ Followers are NOT obligated to follow them but and there is a huge but. There is consequences for not following. Because it also says they hold a sword for no reason. And sadly, history has shown us that the government is often too quick to use that sword. v 5-7: Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience. This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God's servants, who give their full time to governing. Give to everyone what you owe them: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue: if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor. There are two guiding principles here that outline Christian responsibilities to the government. One a good government will do God's will, God's judgement and God's punishment. A bad government will do what THEY want to do. We as Christ Followers can not call a government good if they are going against God's will. The second principal here is our conscience, which is the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit should guide us. If it is a good government then we should obey it for God's sake. If it is a bad government and they are trying to force us to do something that the Holy Spirit is telling us that is wrong or it is against God then we must ALWAYS follow God and not man. In Acts 5:27-29 gives the perfect example of what we should be doing. They apostles were brought in and made to appear before the Sanhedrin to be questioned by the high priest. We gave you strict orders not to teach in this name, he said. Yet you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching and are determined to make us guilty of this man's blood. Peter and the other apostles replied: We must obey God rather than human beings! Let's remember Jesus' words in John 19:10-11- Do you refuse to speak to me? Pilate said. Don't you realize I have power either to free you or to crucify you. Jesus answered, You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above. Therefore the one who handed me over to you is guilty of a greater sin. Guys, we are not called to be trouble makers but God also did not call us to sit on our behinds and just let things happen. If it is against what the Holy Spirit is telling you then it is not God's will and should not be done. Once again it is time for Christ followers to RISE UP! And the very last scripture is this Romans 13:11-14- And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. The night is nearly over, the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh. RISE UP!

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