If you take a look around, you’ll notice the country is a mess. The decline of morals, decency, and standards in many forms are happening at rapid rates. During the past few years, we have watched as gay marriage was legalized in many states while the rest, about 26, upheld the sanctity of marriage. We have witnessed the Supreme Court redefine marriage. This is a slippery slope that we are involved in, whether voluntarily or involuntarily.
By reading emails and social media posts, I know I’m not alone in seeing similarities between our current state of affairs and that during Nazi Germany. Hitler did not gain control and implement his various laws over night. Instead, he began his campaign slowly by first dividing the people. In present day American, we have Obamacare, CommonCore, the indoctrination of our children without the parent’s knowledge, division of race, animosity towards those in law enforcement and the list goes on. Another item on the list is Christianity. Many proclaim to be Christians, but fewer remain steady in their convictions. It has become a travesty and offensive to pray in public. Fortunately, there are places that exist, such as where I live, that folks continue to pray at sporting events and on public property.
You can walk into a public store and participate in a flash mob that includes the Word of God and American Pride.
Even the McDonald’s close to my house shirks political correctness during Christmas and Easter holiday celebrations.
Yes, Ma’am, we live right in the heartland of music and Jesus!
However, this week something astonishing has happened. In the back of my mind, I knew it would happen, but I honestly didn’t think it would happen this soon.
I am in a local Facebook group for conservatives that live in this town. A mother who has a child in the local 7th grade middle school made a post in the group. If my oldest son was public schooled, this is the very school he would be attending. Here is what she said:
“Just FYI parents. My 7th grade daughter brought home all the info on Islam she has been learning. They’ve been on Islam now for 3 weeks. They studied the Roman civilization for a few days, and then they skipped the whole chapter on Christianity! Those 700 years aren’t important, apparently. The school is instructing these impressionable students on the Islamic faith, and my daughter even had written out the shahada, the Muslim profession of faith. We are livid. The state standards require all of this for Islam and it will be on TCAPs, per the teacher. The state does NOT require teaching on Judaism or Christianity” Brandee Porterfield (7th grade mom. Spring Hill, TN)
Here are pictures of her child’s assignment.
I shared this post HERE on my blog FB and HERE on my personal FB. At the time of writing this post, it has been shared 234 times on my personal page alone! I am speechless that the school thinks this is acceptable. Today, the county released a statement. They appear to be brushing this under the rug. I have personally emailed EVERY school board member. I have received only one response.
The parent who originally posted this concern stated that her child completed the assignment for fear of receiving a failing grade. However, what should we do? What would you do if this happened to your child or in your school if you didn’t agree with it?
Another topic along this line is Kim Davis. She is the County Clerk in Rowan County, KY who is refusing to issue marriage certificates. Keep in mind that the state of Kentucky voted against gay marriage. There are people who agree with her and people who don’t. There are many who have questioned her stand on this since she has been married and divorced multiple times. Before casting judgment, I urge you to read her statement HERE. Kim was married several times, but this was before she came to Christ. After coming to Christ, she has been redeemed, forgiven, and set free. She has put her old self away and become new in Christ. Although she is doing her best to honor God, there are many, including proclaiming Christians, who believe she must obey the law. They use scripture in Romans to back this up.
Here is what the apostle Paul wrote: “Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ORDAINED OF GOD. Whosoever therefore resists the power, resists the ORDINANCE OF GOD: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Will you then not be afraid of the power? Do that which is good, and you shall have praise of the same: for he is the minister of God to you for good. But if you do that which is evil, be afraid; for he bears not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that does evil. Wherefore you must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake. For this cause pay you tribute [taxes] also: for they are God’s ministers attending continually upon this very thing. Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honor to whom honor.” Romans 13:1-7
The verses above give us all a lot to think about. All people, including Christians, are subject to “higher powers.”
Since starting this post, Kim Davis has now been ordered to jail “until she decided to listen.” I am speechless. I hardly recognize the country that I love. The same country my husband, dad and grandpa fought for.
[bctt tweet=”Those who forget history or doomed to repeat it. The indoctrination is beginning.”]If you do not agree with gay marriage, you will be sent to jail for re-education. Bunning, the Kentucky judge who sent Kim Davis to jail, cannot hold her indefinitely, but Staver said that he can detain her for an undefined period of time before he brings her back before the court to ask if she has changed her mind about complying with his order to grant same-sex licenses.
Here are some quotes by those who are running for president about this.
From Ted Cruz:
[bctt tweet=”“Today, judicial lawlessness crossed into judicial tyranny.”]Today, for the first time ever, the government arrested a Christian woman for living according to her faith. This is wrong. This is not America. I stand with Kim Davis. Unequivocally. I stand with every American that the Obama Administration is trying to force to choose between honoring his or her faith or complying with a lawless court opinion. In dissent, Chief Justice Roberts rightly observed that the Court’s marriage opinion has nothing to do with the Constitution. Justice Scalia observed that the Court’s opinion was so contrary to law that state and local officials would choose to defy it. For every politician — Democrat and Republican — who is tut-tutting that Davis must resign, they are defending a hypocritical standard. Where is the call for the mayor of San Francisco to resign for creating a sanctuary city — resulting in the murder of American citizens by criminal illegal aliens welcomed by his lawlessness? Where is the call for President Obama to resign for ignoring and defying our immigration laws, our welfare reform laws, and even his own Obamacare? When the mayor of San Francisco and President Obama resign, then we can talk about Kim Davis. Those who are persecuting Kim Davis believe that Christians should not serve in public office. That is the consequence of their position. Or, if Christians do serve in public office, they must disregard their religious faith–or be sent to jail. Kim Davis should not be in jail. We are a country founded on Judeo-Christian values, founded by those fleeing religious oppression and seeking a land where we could worship God and live according to our faith, without being imprisoned for doing so. I call upon every Believer, every Constitutionalist, every lover of liberty to stand with Kim Davis. Stop the persecution now.”
From Mike Huckabee:
“Having Kim Davis in federal custody removes all doubt of the criminalization of Christianity in our country. We must defend religious liberty and never surrender to judicial tyranny. Five unelected Supreme Court lawyers did not and cannot make law. They can only make rulings. The Supreme Court is not the Supreme branch and it’s certainly not the Supreme Being. I am proud of Kim for standing strong for her beliefs. Who will be next? Pastors? Photographers? Caterers? Florists? This is a reckless, appalling, out-of-control decision that undermines the Constitution of the United States and our fundamental right to religious liberty.”
So what should Kim have done? Should she have caved and issued the certificates? Should the students at the aforementioned middle school kept quiet about their assignment? What should happen when someone of authority gives us an order that doesn’t sit well with us?
All human authority is limited in nature. No man has unlimited authority over the lives of other men. (Lordship and Sovereignty is the exclusive domain of Jesus Christ.)
First of all, a Christian is one who believes and follows the truth. This sets him apart from all those around him. He is not of the world and its ways, customs, and traditions. We are called to be in the world but not OF the world. We should strive to keep our lives separate, but what does that mean? It doesn’t mean we have to live in isolation. It means that regardless of what is tossed at us that we will stand firm on God’s Word. Christians do have contact with, and live under, human governments. So when deciding if you should obey a government ruling, we must turn to the Word of God and what it says.
When looking at Romans 13:1-7, which I shared above, we realize that those verses have a lot for one to consider. There is no doubt reading those scriptures that Christians are “subject to a higher power, because they are ordained by God.” The scripture does say that to “resist them, is to resist God.” That is scary! We should be afraid of the power, but many are not. As Christians we also pay taxes and render unto Caesar all that is his. They honor those who deserve honor. Listen, my friends, DO NOT be confused!! Notice something that I found as I was studying these scriptures this week. Christians are not told to be afraid of the men in office. They are told to be afraid of the power that these men hold! Now, what happened to Kim? We also need to note that the only real power that those in authority have is what God allows. It is God whom we should fear, not men!
“The longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth, that God governs in the affairs of man; and if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without His notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without His aid?” This is truer than Franklin probably ever understood.
Now lets look at 1 Peter 2:13-15 and 17.
Peter also gave important instruction about what God expects of Christians in their responsibility toward civil governments. He wrote, “SUBMIT yourselves to every ordinance of man FOR THE LORD’S SAKE: whether it be to the king, as supreme; or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well. For so is the will of God, that with well doing you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men…Honor all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king”
Submit ourselves is what we should do. That is what scripture tells us BUT notice it says FOR THE LORDS SAKE. Paul is giving a general principle, not writing about specific rulers. We do not subject ourselves to specific people, or pay taxes to specific people — rather we submit to the office, and when a new person is in office, we submit to the new person, not the old one. Once a person is out of office, we do not owe that person any allegiance or payments. The “authorities” that Paul writes about are roles, not specific people. Peter did not say to obey every ordinance. Why? Because some laws are contrary to God’s direct instructions and cannot be obeyed. The following account from the book of Acts illustrates this important point. The apostles had been commanded by the authorities (4:16-18) to no longer preach anything about Christ—or to invoke His authority. “Submit” does not always mean “obey,” but it usually does, and Christians should be willing to obey civil authority. If the government commands a sin, then we have to disobey (Acts 5:29).
Here is how the apostles responded: “But Peter and John answered and said unto them, Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge you” (vs. 19). The account continues in the next chapter, after the disciples had been arrested, imprisoned and called to account for disregarding the command to cease preaching Christ’s name. Acts 5:29 states, “Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, WE OUGHT TO OBEY GOD RATHER THAN MEN.
A conversation ensued. Gamaliel, a respected leader, urged the Council to stop further harassment of the apostles. The account continues, “And to him Gamaliel they agreed: and when they had called the apostles, and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go” (vs. 40). The apostles certainly submitted to the beating. Also, they did not lash out and hurl accusations and epithets of every conceivable kind against those who had so unjustly dealt with them. They willingly accepted the consequences of putting God’s way before the wrong-headed instructions of blinded men. They obeyed God rather than men.
In giving instructions for such circumstances, Paul wrote, “So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me” (Heb. 13:6). Should you ever be faced with the decision to “obey God rather than men,” keep this encouraging verse close to heart.
“Stop and think about that before proceeding. ‘There is NO power but of God.’ Where does Satan get his power? God gave it to him at a time when he was ‘perfect in all his ways…till iniquity was found in him.’” (Ezek. 28). In Ephesians ‘we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.’ (Eph. 6:12) These demonic invisible powers of Satan sway and lead those in high places in human government! Nevertheless, this Scripture does tell us. speaking about our several individual lives to ‘BE SUBJECT UNTO’ these higher powers OF MEN, even though elsewhere God shows they are powers of ‘THIS EVIL WORLD,’ and deceived and misled by Satan. But ‘be subject unto’ does not always mean obey. When it would be a matter of disobeying God, we are to obey God, and still be ‘subject to’ whatever punishment the powers of man inflict.
“There can be NO power, of ANY government, except what GOD allows. This passage is instruction to us in our individual personal life! And our people indeed are a law-abiding, patriotic people.”
Things to remember:
- A father has authority in his home, but does this give him power to abuse his wife and children? Of course not.
- An employer has authority on the job, but does this give him power to control the private lives of his employees? No.
- A pastor has overseer authority in the church, but does this give him power to tell employers in his church how to run their businesses? Of course not.
So, even in the midst of telling Christians to submit to civil authority, Romans Chapter 13 limits the power and reach of civil authority. [bctt tweet=”Romans Chapter 13 limits the power and reach of civil authority. “]
- Did Moses violate God’s principle of submission to authority when he killed the Egyptian taskmaster in defense of his fellow Hebrew?
- Did Elijah violate God’s principle of submission to authority when he openly challenged Ahab and Jezebel?
- Did David violate God’s principle of submission to authority when he refused to surrender to Saul’s troops?
- Did Daniel violate God’s principle of submission to authority when he disobeyed the king’s law to not pray audibly to God?
- Did the three Hebrew children violate God’s principle of submission to authority when they refused to bow to the image of the state?
- Did John the Baptist violate God’s principle of submission to authority when he publicly scolded King Herod for his infidelity?
- Did Simon Peter and the other Apostles violate God’s principle of submission to authority when they refused to stop preaching on the streets of Jerusalem?
- Did Paul violate God’s principle of submission to authority when he refused to obey those authorities who demanded that he abandon his missionary work? In fact, Paul spent almost as much time in jail as he did out of jail.
Remember that every apostle of Christ (except John) was killed by hostile civil authorities opposed to their endeavors. Christians throughout church history were imprisoned, tortured, or killed by civil authorities of all stripes for refusing to submit to their various laws and prohibitions. Did all of these Christian martyrs violate God’s principle of submission to authority?
So, even the great prophets, apostles, and writers of the Bible (including the writer of Romans Chapter 13) understood that human authority–even civil authority–is limited.
This is how Romans 13 should read to Americans:
“Let every soul be subject unto the U.S. Constitution. For there is no Constitution but of God: the Constitution that be is ordained of God. Whosoever therefore resisteth the [Constitution], resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. For the Constitution is not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the Constitution? Do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: For the Constitution is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for the Constitution beareth not the sword in vain: for the Constitution is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil. Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake. For this cause pay ye tribute also: for the Constitution is God’s minister, attending continually upon this very thing. Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honor to whom honor.”
Christians in America (for the most part) have not had to face the painful decision to “obey God rather than men” and defy their civil authorities.
The problem in America today is that we have allowed our political leaders to violate their oaths of office and to ignore, and blatantly disobey, the “supreme Law of the Land,” the U.S. Constitution.
Therefore, if we truly believe Romans Chapter 13, we will insist and demand that our civil magistrates submit to the U.S. Constitution.
What conclusions can be drawn from the above biblical examples? The guidelines for a Christian’s civil disobedience can be summed as follows:
• Christians should resist a government that commands or compels evil and should work nonviolently within the laws of the land to change a government that permits evil.
• Civil disobedience is permitted when the government’s laws or commands are in direct violation of God’s laws and commands.
• If a Christian disobeys an evil government, unless he can flee from the government, he should accept that government’s punishment for his actions.
• Christians are certainly permitted to work to install new government leaders within the laws that have been established.
Lastly, Christians are commanded to pray for their leaders and for God to intervene in His time to change any ungodly path that they are pursuing: “First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men, for kings and all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity” (1 Timothy 2:1-2).
Now, how many of us Christians are going to truly obey Romans Chapter 13?
PS. At the conclusion of writing this I came across this in the group I have for Biblical discussions. “She asked for her name not to be listed on the licenses. She’s not fighting to keep the clerks below her from issuing licenses. She simply doesn’t want HER name on the licenses & she doesn’t want to sign them. She and MANY other clerks petitioned the governor of their state who Completely Ignored them. Interesting that out of 57 clerks Kim Davis is the ONLY one who is in the news. Of course, that’s because no doubt all of the others either caved or resigned. While I can’t say that with absolutely certainty, it certainly is Quite Likely!” Click HERE to read the press release.