Seven Critical Challenges for Living in This World (A Study of I Peter 2): Submitting to Government?
Some of you are aware that I’ve been engaged in a daily Bible reading program with my friend Frank in New Jersey for a couple of years or so. We choose a book of the Bible and read the same chapter each day for a week — then move on to the next chapter after that. Our procedure is quite simple and is explained here.
Well, I’ve started a small group of four men who are doing this kind of daily Bible reading and we’ve worked our way through Philippians and I Timothy, and are now going through I Peter. We drop each other a short email on Sunday about something we’ve learned in our reading together.
In reading through I Peter 2, I believe there are seven critical challenges that Peter gives us that are particularly relevant for us right now in our world. Here’s the fifth —
Submission is hard sometimes, isn’t it? Whether it’s to a spouse or to a duly-elected government (perhaps one for which we didn’t vote), putting ourselves under human authority can be challenging.
Note the reason we are to submit ourselves to human authority: it is for the Lord’s sake. How? Maybe the idea is that if we rebel against legitimate human authority, we are presenting Christianity as a religion of disobedience and strife, rather than as the honorable movement that it is.
Note the two aspects of human authority Peter mentions: the emperor (as the supreme authority) and governors. Note also why these authorities are sent by God: “to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right.” Punishment and commendation.
Today’s Challenge: How, specifically, can you submit to God-ordained human leadership? At the very least, you and I should be praying for those who are in authority over us. Are we doing that?
Tags: government, human authority, I Peter 2, leaders, politics, submission