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Obeying Political Leaders: A Look in Romans and Acts

Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same. For he is God’s minister to you for good. But if you do evil, be afraid; for he does not bear the sword in vain; for he is God’s minister, an avenger to execute wrath on him who practices evil. Therefore you must be subject, not only because of wrath but also for conscience; sake. For because of this you also pay taxes, for they are God’s ministers attending continually to this very thing. Render therefore to all their due: taxes to whom taxes are due, customs to whom customs, fear to whom fear, honor to whom honor. (Romans 13:1-7)

How many of you Christians out there today would take this verse and stand by your political powers regardless? I know there are many, if not the majority, who would (and do). By simply observing the actions of Christians during elections and choices their elected “Christian” officials make during terms, one can quickly see the devotion Christians are giving these leaders. And according to Paul, as he wrote here in Romans, it would seem that is what we are to do. Right?

I would first like to break down what Paul has written here, and then look at some other verses on political leaders.

According to what Paul writes, “every soul [should] be subject to the governing authorities.” The reason being is there is “no authority except from God” and these authorities “are appointed by God.” By resisting said authority, then in turn you resist God. Paul continues by pointing out that leaders aren’t put into place to be afraid of good works, but evil works. Basically, these appointed leaders are put there to keep people from doing evil things. And I agree that some form of leadership should be in place to prevent crime from being committed. Such is the reason for laws and punishment for breaking those laws. But what about rulers who are evil themselves? Should we stand by them with such fervor as many Christians do today?

Yes, they may stand by some of your Christian ideals, but do they stand by them all completely? Are they 100 percent Biblical in their actions? Sadly, I can’t point to one leader in authority today that falls under this standard. And if you are willing to give up some of your Biblical teachings to stand by these leaders then maybe you aren’t as Christian as you may think.

In Acts 4 Peter and John are arrested for proclaiming the name of Jesus Christ and healing in Jerusalem. The council (the elders, priests, Sadduccees, etc) didn’t want Jesus being proclaimed to the people anymore, so they wanted to “severely threaten them, that from [that point forward] they speak to no man in this name” (Acts 4:17). In response to this decision of the council, Peter and John answer by saying, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God, you judge. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.” (Acts 4:19-20)

You see, Peter and John were guided by the Holy Spirit. That is clearly established in verse eight: “Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them…” (Acts 4:8) Being led by the Spirit, they stood in opposition to their political leaders, because they knew the leaders stood in opposition to God. We can see also by their actions afterward that they continued teaching and working miracles in the name of Jesus Christ.

As such they were again arrested by the same council. When brought before the council, the leaders said to them, “Did we not strictly command you not to teach in this name? And look, you have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this Man’s blood on us!” (Acts 5:28) In reply, the apostles said, “We ought to obey God rather than men.”

So as you can see, even though Paul teaches that we are to obey our rulers, the apostles make it very clear that when the rulers stand in opposition to God, it is better to obey God rather than men. When you take a look at these leaders around you today, none of them obey God. I’ve seen many people proclaim that Donald Trump is a Godsend, and that he is the forerunner to the second coming of the Messiah. By looking at this man’s lifestyle, actions, etc, how can you honestly say that he has been sent from God? There is nothing about this man that is Christian. And it is the same for any other political leader. They are all so caught up in national pride and their own selfish desires, contrary to what you may believe, there is no way they have room to serve God above themselves and what they stand for.

God doesn’t come first in their lives, but America does. And for the majority of you “Christians” out there today, America is your God as well. You will stand by and defend these leaders tooth and nail in your own selfish pride. You think this country is greater than any other country on the planet and that we belong on top. If anyone tries to stop us then we need to annihilate them. How is that Christian?

The sad truth is, it’s not. God doesn’t want us to stand by leaders who are in direct opposition to Him. He wants us to obey Him first. If the leaders are truly Christian, then by all means, follow them and stand by them. Unfortunately, we live in a world where God has been left behind and pride has taken lead. Satan has his hands in everything, especially politics.

So I ask you to evaluate your stance in Christianity and those “Christian” leaders you so fanatically stand for. Are they really Christian? Are you really Christian?

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