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Submission without Obedience

I remembered our previous series God & Gov about civil government. It is mentioned in Romans 13:1,4 that

Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. . . . For he is God’s servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God’s servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer.

Submission is an attitude of heart. Obedience is an act of will. It is possible to have submission without obedience.

Take for example the story of Peter. They are told by the Pharisees not to preach about Jesus Christ but still they preach. They did not obey the Pharisees. But they submitted to the authority by wholeheartedly surrendered themselves and put into prison.

Civil government is God’s intended vehicle for providing security, peace, order, and justice in the nation. The Apostle Paul expected the believers in Rome to submit to their governing authorities despite the fact that the ruling government at that time was unjust and persecuted Christians. (God & Gov – Why Do We Need Civil Government?)

We should always obey God and His will for us. If the authority has decrees that are not aligned to God’s word, obey God and submit to authority by accepting the consequences the authority imposed for violating the decree. It is still God above all things.

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