Romans 13:1-7 (ESV) Submission to the Authorities
13 Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, 4 for he is God's servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God's wrath on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore one must be in subjection (submission), not only to avoid God's wrath but also for the sake of conscience. 7 Pay to all what is owed to them: taxes to whom taxes are owed, revenue to whom revenue is owed, respect to whom respect is owed, honor to whom honor is owed.
I learned with difficulty to honor authority, to honor Father God, and honoring the authority of men God placed me under. It was only through the grace of God and the mercy of our pastor that I learnt the rewards associated with honoring authority. I am talking a process that took decades due to lack of authority in all areas of my life due to life choices as a young man. When I see it in people and our church, I pray against the haughty independent spirit of rebellion that is celebrated in the world.
When I was a boy, I rebelled against my parents not realizing I cursed myself until becoming a child of God, and then it wasn’t healed immediately. I continued to rebel against everyone and anyone in authority because of a rebellious spirit that had attached itself to my being as a child. 1 Samuel 15:23 For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, And stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, He also has rejected you...”
I came to understand that submission is not easy, it’s not forced and it’s not agreement. Surrender or submission is acknowledging God’s authority over our life, to trust Him and not ourselves, by willfully accepting the condition of being humble or obedient to honor God’s purpose for our life. 1 Peter 5:6-7 “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, 7 casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.” By honoring God and humbling ourselves gives God the means to trust us with His Authority. The reward of a surrendered heart is to choose God’s way or your way – it’s our choice. I recommend you choose God’s way to save much heartache and anguish in life. I thank God for His grace and mercy.
Pastor Greg Volich