This article, like other articles and editorials I have done will likely turn into some people not understanding, becoming critical, and even attacking Reverend Jeremiah Wright and Barack Obama, for those people, be careful what you become critical of, that isn’t what this is about. I don’t like the title, but the title if you note is a quote, a quote which many of us have heard many times over the last weeks. Notes of warning from the get go; I won’t approve comments that deal with attacking either Barack Obama or Reverend Jeremiah Wright. This isn’t about attacking people, even those we disagree with. This article is about looking at what the Bible says regarding our leaders, and the relationship we are to have towards those in authority. I will welcome anyone posting comments on this, and especially those posting comments using their particular religious views supported by their religious documents, whether the Koran, The Torah, Book of Mormon, or the Bible. If you aren’t religious, your thoughts and comments are also welcome, obviously you won’t use a religious text to support your position, but your view is of value.
Now a simple read, a simple read of some of the things the Bible in particular says regarding some of the teachings that followers of Jesus could think about in regards to leaders and countries.
Obey the rulers who have authority over you. Only God can give authority to anyone, and he puts these rulers in their places of power. People who oppose the authorities are opposing what God has done, and they will be punished. Rulers are a threat to evil people, not to good people. There is no need to be afraid of the authorities. Just do right, and they will praise you for it. After all, they are God's servants, and it is their duty to help you.
If you do something wrong, you ought to be afraid, because these rulers have the right to punish you. They are God's servants who punish criminals to show how angry God is. But you should obey the rulers because you know it is the right thing to do, and not just because of God's anger.
You must also pay your taxes. The authorities are God's servants, and it is their duty to take care of these matters. Pay all that you owe, whether it is taxes and fees or respect and honor. ~ Romans 13: 1-7
First of all, I ask you to pray for everyone. Ask God to help and bless them all, and tell God how thankful you are for each of them. Pray for kings and others in power, so that we may live quiet and peaceful lives as we worship and honor God. ~ 1 Timothy 2: 1, 2
Obey your leaders and do what they say. They are watching over you, and they must answer to God. So don't make them sad as they do their work. Make them happy. Otherwise, they won't be able to help you at all. ~ Hebrews 13: 7
Always let others see you behaving properly, even though they may still accuse you of doing wrong. Then on the day of judgment, they will honor God by telling the good things they saw you do.
The Lord wants you to obey all human authorities, especially the Emperor, who rules over everyone. You must also obey governors, because they are sent by the Emperor to punish criminals and to praise good citizens. ~ 1 Peter 2: 12 – 14
If my own people will humbly pray and turn back to me and stop sinning, then I will answer them from heaven. I will forgive them and make their land fertile once again.
I will hear the prayers made in this temple, ~ 2 Chronicles 7: 14, 15
So what point am I trying to drive home? Quite simple actually, as people who say we follow Jesus, we may actually accomplish more if we pray for our leaders, pray for our countries and serve those who need served than if we complain all of the time. Don’t get me wrong, as followers of Jesus we have to stand for justice, we have to stand for what is right, we must place God in authority over our countries, but, maybe just maybe, we will accomplish more out of love, even love of our enemies and those who would do us wrong, than if we take up the sword and go to battle. On that note, two more verses to think about.
Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God. ~ Matthew 5:9
But the wisdom that comes from above leads us to be pure, friendly, gentle, sensible, kind, helpful, genuine, and sincere. When peacemakers plant seeds of peace, they will harvest justice. ~ James 3: 17 – 18
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