Obey Authorities and Be Peaceable



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  • Obey Authorities and Be Peaceable

    "Remind them to be submissive to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good work, to speak evil of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward ALL people" (Titus 3:1-2).

    Greek historian Diodorus Siculus mentions the tendency of the Cretans (rebellious Jews under the Roman Empire who many lived in Crete) to riotous insubordination. The Apostle Peter distinguishes the king as supreme, and the governors under him: the Roman emperor and senate, the consuls, and proconsuls, deputies and governors of provinces and islands, are here meant; particularly such who were appointed over the island of Crete. One greatly anointed teacher after the other, in the same spirit, in varied language, urges upon the people of Christ a reverence and submission to all legally constituted authority in the state.

    "Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which is from God. The authorities that exist have been appointed by God" (Romans 13:1).

    "Remind the believers of these things, charging them before God to avoid quarreling over words; this is in no way profitable, and leads its listeners to ruin" (2 Tim. 2:14).

    It is one thing to be aware of and openly apprise of evil, where it is the Christians duty to warn those hell bound, inevitable pointing them to the Jesus' finished work on cross. "Yet if you warn the wicked, and he doesn't turn from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered your soul" (Ezekiel 3:19). However, it is quite another to rail against another person, to quarrel with them, call them names, belittle them with divisive statements. I cannot help but notice Christians become confused by these details, assuming that even the mention of error is wrong on the side of offense. The post-modern church has over the decades lost its spine.

    If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor. Integrity is telling myself the truth, while honesty is telling the truth to other people. James reminds us, “Whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save him from death and cover over a multitude of sins” (James 5:20). We do no one favors when we silently collude with their delusion. When it comes to speaking the truth about error, "neutrality" is often a cloak for fear. Psalm 94:16 reads, "Who will rise up for me against the wicked? Who will stand for me against those who practice iniquity?"

    But you can be certain that after a time of standing, a storm will ensue.
    The psalmist found relief only in the Lord, when all earthly friends failed. There is a rest remaining for the people of God. After the days of their adversity, which shall not always last, the Lord will send rest. "He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart" (Psalm 91:4). He who by faith chooses God as their protector, shall find all in him that they need or can desire. The spiritual life is protected by Divine grace from the temptations of Satan, which are as the snares of the fowler, and from the contagion of sin, which is a noisome pestilence.

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