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Summary: “Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities.” That’s easy for Paul to say. He didn’t have to deal with a tax-and-spend President, who doesn’t seem to be able to make up his mind. The President smiles nicely but is confused about foreign po

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THE CHRISTIAN AND THE HUMAN FAMILY

Romans 13:1-7

Introduction

“Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities.”

That’s easy for Paul to say. He didn’t have to deal with a tax-and-spend President, who doesn’t seem to be able to make up his mind. The President smiles nicely but is confused about foreign policy. He gets angry if babies are bombed but calls it “choice” if they are sucked out of a mother’s womb. When it comes to godliness in sexuality, he doesn’t seem to understand; and his family’s ethics seem to be adolescent at best.

That’s easy for Paul to say. He doesn’t have to deal with a Speaker of the House of Representatives who is unpredictable and explosive, whose heart is so hard that he would let his wife support him through school and dump her.

Paul didn’t have to face a Congress that is ready to strip all of the compassion from government. It seems ready to keep “pork” projects for favored districts but grab money from the hands of babies and old people.

It’s easy enough for Paul to say. He can be idealistic when he doesn’t have to cope with the immoralities of late twentieth century governments.

It wasn’t easy for him to say. Think about the cities where he almost got killed. Think about Corinth, the place from which he wrote these things. Think about the Roman empire. It was far worse than our government ever thought about being.

Yet, listen to the way he talks.

I. Submit Yourself to the Governing Authorities.

A. Willingly, “place yourself under” them.

B. Anarchy is never of Christ.

C. To oppose governmental decision sometimes is of God It must be an ungodly decision. I must be willing to accept the consequences of my principled opposition. I may disagree, but I am never immune from any punishment that comes from having broken the law.

II. Do What Is Right!

A. It must be right by divine definition.

B. Then you make a special, most important contribution to society.

C. The fruit of the spirit is a good place to start—fruit that we are to produce, which demonstrates the Holy Spirit in our lives (Galatians 5:22). “Against these there is no law.”

Conclusion

Honor and respect! What will that mean?

• What will it mean for me to respect the officials?

• What will it mean for me to respect my family, my parents, my friends, my church leaders? (The way I talk with them, the way I talk about them, the way I pray for them)

• What will it mean for me to respect God?


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