I get a lot of believers in Jesus asking me about our duty to obey government even if they are acting in an evil way. They usually cite Romans chapter 13.
If you are wondering if you are deceived by thinking that you don’t need to be duty bound to follow whatever the evil government decides, let me tell you that you are not deceived.
Below I take a quick look at the first 8 verses in Romans 13 from the KJVER version with my comments inter dispersed.
Let every soul be subject to the higher powers [i.e. governmental authorities]. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of [established by] God.Romans 13:1
This is of course correct. All power on earth is under God’s sovereign will.
Whosoever therefore resists the power, resists the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation [condemnation].Romans 13:2
This is also true but it is conditional on the rest of the text that follows.
For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Will you then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and you shall have praise of the same:Romans 13:3
If the ruler is a terror to good works and not to the evil as is the case in the world now, the ruler is still ordained of God but you are not required to follow his dictates.
God uses evil rulers to rule over evil people but if the ruler acts in an evil way over God’s people or over the people in general the people are not duty bound to follow those evil ways. For example, if the leader/dictator of your state orders doctors to inject children with toxic shots that kill them, how could a follower of Jesus follow those directions? That would be participating in evil.
Our Western Australian Police Commissioner claims to be a born again believer in Jesus but he is participating in evil. Thus you have no requirement to follow his directions in the arena where evil is being committed.
Instead God requires…
For he is the minister [servant] of God to you for good. But if you do that which is evil, be afraid; for he bears not the sword in vain: for he is the minister [servant] of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that does evil.Romans 13:4
Thus the government and its enforcement arm are meant to keep evil in check. What we have now under COVID tyranny is evil being committed under the authority of the government.
We know it is evil because there is no informed consent. The COVID “vaccine” inserts are intentionally left blank. So how can a doctor give the patient informed consent? He can’t and that also makes him culpable in this crime.
Wherefore you must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.Romans 13:5
But only if the ruler is for the good of the ruled. Not if he is an evil dictator.
There is another aspect to this. If the ruler is evil and he is ruling over an evil people (just like Nebuchanezzar ruled over evil Israel taken captive into Babylon) He is nevertheless ordained of God. This is because God uses evil people to execute His judgments on man. I believe that this is what is happening now in the world. In this sense, the evil rulers are still God’s ministers, His servants.
For for this cause pay you tribute also: for they are God’s ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.Romans 13:6
So, as a follower of Christ we obey all we can, without compromising what the scriptures and hence God’s law teaches. We don’t need to enter politics as that is a very dirty game, but also God does not say a believer cannot do that.
However, Jesus said to Pilate that His “kingdom is not of this world” (John 18:36). We are strangers and pilgrims in the world, we are just passing through, we are waiting for a better kingdom, the kingdom of God (1 Peter 2:11; Hebrews 11:13,16). That kingdom is in our hearts now, and will be realised in the world to come (Revelation 21,22). In this world we only use it, but we do not hold onto anything in it (1 Corinthians 7:31).
Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.Romans 13:7
Pay your taxes, but honour and respect also is conditional on a ruler acting for good and not evil against the people.
Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loves another has fulfilled the law.Romans 13:8
Personally owe no man or woman any thing except we are commanded to love one another. That is the only requirement from God. We are free of all ordinances and laws that would enslave us.
I find the following presentation by Prof. Zimmermann on this topic to be excellent. It was given in October 2021 Covenant Baptist Church, Rossmoyne, Western Australia.
Available on YouTube.
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