“Everyone must submit to governing authorities. For all authority comes from God, and those in positions of authority have been placed there by God.” – Romans 13:1 (NLT)
Bit of a controversial topic right here. Government and the Bible. I’m sure that many who see the title will blow right by this article because they don’t want to hear what is said straight from Scripture. The idea that government and the church need to be separate, it is yet another idea that has invaded the minds and hearts of “believers” and they have believed the lie. Which has gotten us to where we are today.
So, submission to governing authorities. What does this mean, and how do we practically apply it as believers? Well first and foremost, let’s make sure this point is clear: The Word of God will always trump the law of the land. What I mean by this is, if the governing authorities attempt to dictate and decree things that are contrary to the Word of the Lord, we have no choice but to remain obedient to God and His Word. We see this all throughout the Scriptures. Daniel, when told to only pray to the king, continued to pray to God on a daily basis as if nothing had even changed. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego all refused to bow down to the golden statue. Peter and John, when told by the governing body to cease all preaching about Jesus, said to their faces that they had no choice but to obey God rather than man. Even Paul, the man who wrote the words of Romans, always obeyed God rather than man when the truth was at stake.
This is a basic part of being a believer. And the reality of the situation is, we are in the current circumstances that we are in today because the people of yesterday refused to stand up for truth, all because of the lie of the separation of church and state. This is not a Biblical concept, but a man-made one.
“Pay your taxes, too, for these same reasons. For government workers need to be paid. They are serving God in what they do. Give to everyone what you owe them: Pay your taxes and government fees to those who collect them, and give respect and honor to those who are in authority.” – Romans 13:6-7
This includes if you take out a loan from the government. No, you cannot use Scripture in an accurate way to give Biblical basis for forgiving student loans. You know what this creates? It creates a class of people who are entitled and think they deserve something without doing the work required. In essence, laziness. Which, Scripture has quite a few things to say about laziness. If you willingly take out a loan from the government, you must pay back that loan.
“Owe nothing to anyone – except for your obligation to love one another. If you love your neighbor, you will fulfill the requirements of God’s law.” – Romans 13:8
“Love does no wrong to others, so love fulfills the requirements of God’s law.” – Romans 13:10
Love upholds the truth. To rightly love your neighbor, this means to point them (in a loving way) towards the path of righteousness which leads to Life. To not do so is to fail to truly love your neighbor. Love, true and authentic love, does no wrong to anyone, which means that love always stands on truth. And what is truth? It is the Living Word of God.
“So remove your dark deeds like dirty clothes, and put on the shining armor of right living.” – Romans 13:12b
“Instead, clothe yourself with the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ. And don’t let yourself think about ways to indulge your evil desires.” – Romans 13:14