Adam Osborne dot net My Bible Studies

January 20, 2023

Government Authority – A Christian Perspective – 20 Jan 23

Filed under: Old and New Testament — Adam Osborne @ 10:32 am

1 Peter 2:11-25  Dear friends, I urge you as strangers and exiles to abstain from sinful desires that wage war against the soul. 12 Conduct yourselves honorably among the Gentiles, so that when they slander you as evildoers, they will observe your good works and will glorify God on the day he visits. 13  Submit to every human authority because of the Lord, whether to the emperor as the supreme authority 14 or to governors as those sent out by him to punish those who do what is evil and to praise those who do what is good. 15 For it is God’s will that you silence the ignorance of foolish people by doing good. 16 Submit as free people, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but as God’s slaves. 17 Honor everyone. Love the brothers and sisters. Fear God. Honor the emperor. 18 Household slaves, submit to your masters with all reverence not only to the good and gentle ones but also to the cruel. 19 For it brings favor if, because of a consciousness of God, someone endures grief from suffering unjustly. 20 For what credit is there if when you do wrong and are beaten, you endure it? But when you do what is good and suffer, if you endure it, this brings favor with God. 21 For you were called to this, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps. 22 He did not commit sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth;, 23 when he was insulted, he did not insult in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten but entrusted himself to the one who judges justly. 24 He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree; so that, having died to sins, we might live for righteousness. By his wounds, you have been healed. 25 For you were like sheep going astray,, but you have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls. 

FIRST, we are to obey God’s word, rather than mans word,  Acts 5:29.  When laws or rules conflict with God’s Word, we are to obey God. 

However, God has established government to rule and protect His children. In God’s sovereign goodness he is providing mankind with a structure of human authority.  God’s overall plan for human government is for the good of the people governed.

  • We are to submit to government authority because God has placed them in their positions.
  • Christ was our example.  Christ suffered unjustly when he died upon the cross.  
  • Live with integrity and good works in your larger society, remembering that you are temporary residents. Heaven is our home, and as we wait for it, we are to abide to the laws of the land.  (vs 11-12).  (Psalm 9:12) 
  • We are to submit to government authority because this is one of the ways you silence those who oppose you. (vs 13-17) 
  • Submit to those in authority over you in your work, even if they are unfair, because this pleases God. (vs 18:20) 
  • Yes, we are to submit even to authorities who are unbelievers and morally bankrupt.
  • We are not to rebel against government authority, as long as that authority does not contradict God’s words.
  • VS 18 “slaves”.  Peter was not addressing whether slavery was immoral; he was offering wisdom for the period of time when slavery was allowed in the laws of the land. Back in this time-frame, many Christians were household slaves.
  • Life Application Study Bible, NIV 1984. Tyndall House Publishers Inc.
    • “In most aspects of daily life, it was possible and desirable for Christians to live according to the law of their land. Today, some Christians live in freedom while others live under repressive governments.  All are commanded to cooperate with the rulers as far as conscience will allow.  We are to do this “for the Lord’s sake” – so that his Good News and his people will be respected.  If we are to be persecuted, it should be for obeying God, and not for breaking moral or civil laws.”
  • VS 12. Conduct yourselves honorably…
    • Philippians 2:15 so that you may be blameless and pure, children of God who are faultless in a crooked and perverted generation, among whom you shine like stars in the world, 
    • Matthew 5:16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven. 
  • VS 21 that you should follow in his steps…
    • Matthew 16:24  Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If anyone wants to follow after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me.
    • 1 John 2:6  The one who says he remains in him should walk just as he walked. 
  • VS 23 when he was insulted…
    • Isaiah 53:7  He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth. Like a lamb led to the slaughter and like a sheep silent before her shearers, he did not open his mouth.
    • Luke 23:46 And Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I entrust my spirit.”, Saying this, he breathed his last. 
  • VS 24 he himself bore our sins…
    • Hebrews 2:28  so also Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.
    • Isaiah 53:5  But he was pierced because of our rebellion, crushed because of our iniquities; punishment for our peace was on him, and we are healed by his wounds.

Powered by WordPress