As with everything it is imperative that we always seek and maintain a God centered perspective as we live in this world. Even now in Grant Park Illinois over 170,000 people have gathered to cheer for and congratulate President Elect Barrack Obama. It is historical to have the United States first multi-ethnic President and many have placed their hope and faith in Mr. Obama’s abilities to accomplish many if not all of his campaign promises.
Regardless of our personal perspective we must all understand how God would have us respond to our governmental leaders. Please meditate on this passage and allow it to bless and encourage you as we submit to, honor, and obey the governing authority God has placed over us. Allow these verses to shape your God centered perspective on our president elect specifically and our government in general.
Romans 13:1 Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. 2 Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. 3 For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you. 4 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. 5 Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience.
Romans 13:6 This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God's servants, who give their full time to governing. 7 Give everyone what you owe him: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor.
We are all directed to submit to governmental authority. Even though we are blessed with free speech in this country let us weigh very carefully the way we speak about and reference governing officials.
Governing officials are established by God. God does not make decisions based on party affiliation but decides based on his own sovereign will. So every past, current, and future leader some how figures into God’s plan for mankind. A believer hopes in this reality but ultimately trusts God knows what is best.
Those who rebel against governing authorities are rebelling against God. Too often we fall into the pit fall of believing we are our own highest authority and we lash out against those God has placed in positions of governance. The Greek word for rebel is, “to range in battle against”. Let us not battle against God by fighting against governing authorities.
The Government is both a servant and an agent of God to do good or to punish. As a servant of God the government is to make decisions which are honoring to the Lord; decisions which are good for the people. This is why it is important for us to vote. It creates an opportunity for us vote for the candidate which we believe will do the most good for the people. This is not simply financial good but a believer should take into account every aspect of our lives. As an agent of God the government is to punish law breakers and this is honoring to the Lord as it is his will to keep peace and order in a nation.
Believers also submit because our conscience. Our conscience has been renewed by the Holy Spirit and a believer must be able to distinguish between good and bad embracing the former and rejecting the latter. A believer is not defiant toward their government but we call on the Lord to move in them to judge justly, legislate lovingly, and lead diligently.
Render unto the government the things that are due the government but render unto God that which belongs to God. (Matthew 22:21) Sometimes we place our hope and faith in a political machine. Sometimes we long for the good times which follow a season of financial prosperity and a healthy economy. At other times we hope for change that is long lasting transcendent. Let us all be wise and never convey the hope, trust, faith, and desire that should be reserved for God; and give it to a government which is nothing more than a instrument of service which God uses for his own plans and purposes.
Pray for the Bush/Cheney family
Pray for the Obama/Biden family
Pray for the newly elected Senators
Pray for the many amendments and referendums which were approved or denied
Let us pray for our nation that it will be the servant and agent which God has designed it to be, this is the most loving thing we can do as God’s children.