Summary: 4 of 4. Peter maintained & pressed the importance of Christians operating within the bounds of secular governance. Christian submission is indissolubly linked/tied to secular governance. But how or in what ways? Christian governance addresses...
‘For The LORD’S SAKE’—1Peter 2:13—3:12
A. CHRISTIAN GOVERNANCE-&-Government--IV—1Peter 2:13-17
So far in our study of 1Peter we have examined the fact that
Christians are...CONSIDERED ALIEN(1:1-2)...
We’ve examined...WHAT’s So GREAT About GOD—(1:3-12)
Discovered God’s means of...UNLEASHING Your SPIRITUAL VITALITY/Vigor—(1:13-21)
And we’ve found the importance of LOVING THE BRETHREN(1:22—2:12).
Now we are going to see how those truths play into the scheme of SUBMISSION...the give-&-take of relationships in our world.
And particularly, the role Submission plays in the Christian’s relationship with government.
When I was a boy living at home, I was under the governance/tutelage of my parents. I did not ‘rightly’ do anything without their permission. I ‘got away with’ some things without their permission. But they were the governors of my life.
Peter pressed the importance of Christian submission to secular governance.
Peter expected the submission of Christians to secular governance.
What is the relation between Christian obedience to secular governance?
How are Christians to properly relate to secular governance?
6 facets of CHRISTIAN GOVERNANCE-&-Government.
We’ve found previously that CHRISTIAN GOVERNANCE-&-Government addresses...
1. The SUBMISSION Of GOVERNANCE(:13a-c)
2. The REACH Of GOVERNANCE(:13d-14a)
3. The MISSION Of GOVERNANCE(:14b)
4. The SILENCE In GOVERNANCE(:15)
5—Christian Governance-&-Government addresses...
FREEDOM In GOVERNANCE(:16)
2:16—“as free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God.”
In following God thru His government, we act “as free” men do, because we are!
Christians are free from—a.-Condemnation of sin, b.-(blind)Law, c.-Spiritual bondage, d.-Worldly influence, e.-Fear of man, f.-Fear of death, etc.!
And true Christian freedom never uses “liberty” to “cloak” their “vices.” In other words, Christian “liberty” is not God’s liberty when it is used as a forceful wedge into the lives of others & when relied upon as a ‘right’ in order to meet selfish & fleshly ends.
‘Vice-doing’ evinces enslavement to sin & self.
“Genuine freedom liberates believers to do what is good.”—NAC
Christians are instead to use their God-given liberty in the manner of “bondservants of God.”
1Cor. 6:12—“All things are lawful for me, but all things are not helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.”
1Cor. 10:23-24—“All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful; all things are lawful for me, but not all things edify. Let no one seek his own, but each one the other’s well-being.”...
Similar to our ‘All things in moderation’...In those verses Paul is re-casting ‘secularized freedom’ within the proper bounds of God’s mercy & grace—so that His mercy & grace attain to being very practical as helpful, ministering, missional, building, encouraging, & loving. This same concept is present in Php. 2:1-11(in relation to Jesus’ birth)...
Php. 2:3-8—“Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others. Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, & coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself & became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. You see, All things are only ‘lawful,’ if those ‘things’ are by ‘the law of God’, i.e. The perfect law of liberty(Js. 1:25; Js. 2:12)
Js. 1:25—“But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty & continues in it, & is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.”
Some see themselves as ‘entitled kings’ with a kingdom that is all about themselves. To be waited upon by the masses thru tax money. These care nothing about the common welfare or well-being of others. But then, what can you expect from those who do not accept Jesus as God’s only-begotten Son! What a pitiful ‘comfort’ to set yourself up for eternal hell-fire!
Js. 2:12—“So speak & so do as those who will be judged by the law of liberty.”
Your obedience to government should be from a position of strength by submission to Christ. “Believers do not enjoy unrestricted freedom,”(NAC) but they exercise freedom under control of the Holy Spirit of God.
Discussions regarding ‘separation of church & state’ ensure that there is indeed an intersection of church with the state...Yet without the state being our ultimate master or supporter/producer of “vice.”
Yet we are “as free.” We have our freedom in Christ. If our government operates from that principle & especially that actuality, then God’s good people & all others prosper. And everybody in their heart-of-hearts wants to prosper.