Title:Godís View of Government

Focus:As Christians, being a living sacrifice involves submission to governing authority because God has established all authority.Therefore, to oppose governing authority is to oppose Godís authority.So, part of our service to God is service to country.If the governing authority becomes evil and opposes God and his people, Godís people need to remain faithful to God above all else.That involves honoring the governing authority by being good citizens as much as possible.

Function:To motivate the hearers to honor their leaders, especially by praying for them

Text:Rom 13:1-7

 

 

Intro:

1.What place does government have in Godís plan?

††††††††††† a.Medeival times & Reformation - State sponsored churches

††††††††††† b.But a group of people saw that we not of this world (Anabaptists)

††††††††††† c.Now there are those who advocate no involvement with Govít

††††††††††† d.Some radical groups see all Govít as evil

2.Does the Bible have anything to say about Government?

3.(Rom 13:1-7) - We need to be in subjection to Governing Authorities

 

I.Because all authority comes from God (v.1)

††††††††††† A.Bible teaches that God is omnipotent

††††††††††††††††††††††† 1.Does just mean he is has infinite strength

††††††††††††††††††††††† 2.Means he has infinite power, rule and authority

††††††††††††††††††††††† 3.So how is anyone able to excercise any authority?

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† - It is only with Godís favor or permission

††††††††††† B.Examples of Godís authority in world affairs

††††††††††††††††††††††† 1.Godís ďMessiahĒ in Isaiah (Isa 45:1) - Cyrus

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.Cyrus made decree allowing return to Israel

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.God was behind that decision

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† c.Cyrus on the throne because of God

††††††††††††††††††††††† 2.(Isa 10:5-15) - Power of Assyria

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.They invincible for nearly 400 years

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.Their rise to power due to God

††††††††††††††††††††††† 3.(Acts 17:22-26) - General statement about territories

††††††††††† C.Story that shows Godís sovereignty (Dan. 4)

††††††††††††††††††††††† 1.Dream - Huge tree visible to whole earth, all sat under shade

††††††††††††††††††††††† 2.Tree would be chopped down due to sins of the king

††††††††††††††††††††††† 3.(Dan 4:24-25) - Neb cut down to size until recognize God

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† - Isa 14 Prophecy against arrogant Babylon

††††††††††††††††††††††† 4.(4:29--37) It happened until Neb humbled self

††††††††††† D.Since all authority comes from God, we need to be in subjection

 

II.Because opposing governing authority = opposing God(v.2-3)

††††††††††† A.Sometimes it may seem like we need to oppose govít

††††††††††††††††††††††† 1. The current emperor when Paul wrote Romans was Nero

††††††††††††††††††††††† 2.So this may have sounded incredible

††††††††††† B.The principle - God is a God of order not confusion

††††††††††††††††††††††† 1.Can see this principle in Genesis 1 & 1 Cor 14

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.Creation was God bringing order to a formless void

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.Worship in decency and order to reflect Godís character

††††††††††††††††††††††† 2.God has governing authority in all areas of creation

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.Laws of nature to bring order to creation

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.Governing authority to keep order among men

††††††††††††††††††††††† 3.First thing God did when he ďcreatedĒ Israel

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.Brought order to a mass of people

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.Part of it involved conferring govít authority

††††††††††††††††††††††† 4.Paul instruction repeated by Peter in (1 Pet 2:13-17)

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.Peter says be in subjection to govít

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.Because they are sent by God to govern

††††††††††† C.Let me share several examples

††††††††††††††††††††††† 1.Luke illustrated that submission a feature of Christianity

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.In Acts, confrontation with Roman respectful

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.Shows that Christians are not anarchists, or treason

††††††††††††††††††††††† 2.Josephus did the same for Jews, but more directly

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.Jews had reputation for rebellion

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.Josephus took pains to show this only handful of Zealots

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††† and did not represent mainstream Judaism

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† c.Josephus encouraged Jews to respect Romeís rule

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† d.Rome ruled by Godís favor, opposition is opposing God

††††††††††††††††††††††† 3.Daniel would be good example of what Josephus would call

††††††††††††††††††††††† †††† mainstream Judaism

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.Daniel served under two foreign kings in govt

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.The first conquered Jerusalem & took him captive

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† c.But he served faithfully and honorably

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† d.Daniel was highly prized for his integrity

††††††††††† D.All authority comes from God, to oppose it is to oppose God

 

III.Because God established governing authority for good (v.4)

††††††††††† A.God is interested in an orderly world, so he allows govt authority

††††††††††††††††††††††† 1.Government upholds laws for good

††††††††††††††††††††††† 2.It is against law to steal, kill, assault, speed on highway

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† - These are meant for our good

††††††††††† B.Problem - Governing authority is not always good

††††††††††††††††††††††† 1.How do you determine if/when not to submit to govt?

††††††††††††††††††††††† 2.(John 16:2-3) - Jesus said Govít will persecute you

††††††††††††††††††††††† 3.Book of Revelation about the Govít who persecuted

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.Revelation never told the church to rebel

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.Did tell them to remain faithful until death

††††††††††††††††††††††† 4.Israel is another example of govít gone bad

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.A time when no justice from king or judges

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.Bribes, exploitation, & evil

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† c.Prophets did not start rebellion

††††††††††† C.Key to knowing where to draw the line - (Mark 12:13-17)

††††††††††††††††††††††† 1.Whose image is on your money?It belongs to him

††††††††††††††††††††††† 2.Whose image in on you - God - YOU belong to him

††††††††††††††††††††††† 3.So, serving country is under the umbrella of serviing God

††††††††††† D.God establish govít for good

††††††††††††††††††††††† 1.Submission to govít assumes that it is a good govít

††††††††††††††††††††††† 2.If turns evil, the Bible not say church is to start movt of anarchy

††††††††††††††††††††††† 3.As history shows, God brings down evil govít

††††††††††††††††††††††† 4.Our place is to honor govít in the context of service to God

 

IV.How to submit to authority (v.5-6)

††††††††††† A.Not absolute submission because Govít not have absolute authority

††††††††††††††††††††††† - Only God has absolute authority

††††††††††† B.(1 Pet 4:14-16)

††††††††††††††††††††††† 1.If you suffer at the hands of Government, let it only be for good

††††††††††††††††††††††† 2.Pay your taxes - Not paying taxes is dishonoring God

††††††††††††††††††††††† 3.Honor those over you

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† a.That means honoring president, governer, etc.

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† b.Means honoring law enforcement, judges, etc.

††††††††††† C.(1 Tim 1:1-3) - Pray for those in government

††††††††††††††††††††††† 1.We may be more accustomed to putting them down

††††††††††† ††††††††††† 2.We should pray for them

 

Concl:

1.How many of you have included govít in prayers in the last week?

††††††††††† a.We set example for family when pray for authority

††††††††††† b.Set good example for unbelievers as well

2.Shows We are a people of peace in a world of conflict

††††††††††† a.Tools of our conflict?

††††††††††† b.In Revelation - It was the incense - prayers of the saints

††††††††††† c.It was also their faithfulness to God (had a seal of God)

††††††††††††††††††††††† - Protected them from the wrath of God

3.So we need to be faithful and we need to pray for govít

4.Invitation

†††††††††††††††††††††††