SUBMISSION WITHOUT COMPROMISE!
SUBMISSION WITHOUT COMPROMISE!
Before God life is largely about the issue of SUBMISSION. All people are called to submit to God and the truth of God's Word. All people are called to submit to God ordained governing authorities. The Church is to submit to ruling elders. Wives are to submit to husbands. Children are to submit to parents. Everyone is called to be in the role of submission in one way or another. Our attitude regarding submission tells volumes about our relationship to God.
We live in the "last days" in which many professing Christians are "boasters, proud, haughty" (2 Tim. 3:1-5). Arrogance defies biblical submission. Arrogance defies humility which is demonstrated in biblical submission. Many Christians are very quick to challenge any and all authority. The patriarchal ways that emphasize biblical submission are considered archaic. Liberated thinking has a novel way at looking at things that is intellectually stimulating and satisfying which gets around this this outdated idea of SUBMISSION. We now have "rights" you know. Tell that to the slaves in the time of Peter! Peter didn't talk to them about their "rights" but rather about God-honoring submission.
1 Peter 2:18–21 (HCSB)
18 Household slaves, submit with all fear to your masters, not only to the good and gentle but also to the cruel.
19 For it brings favor if, mindful of God’s will, someone endures grief from suffering unjustly.
20 For what credit is there if you sin and are punished, and you endure it? But when you do what is good and suffer, if you endure it, this brings favor with God.
21 For you were called to this, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you should follow in His steps.
In this fallen world abuse is a terrible reality. It takes place in relationship to all areas of authority. Depraved people abuse authority. Daniel 7 describes the world powers that will rule during the "times of the Gentiles" as BEASTS. They are NOT kind to God's people. Yet, that does not mean we can throw the doctrine of submission to the wind. As God's people we walk a "tightrope" where we are called to submit to the governing authorities; and yet at the same time we are called to serve God without compromise. We are to obey the government at every point possible UNLESS the government commands us to disobey God. Then as Peter said, "We ought to obey God rather than men." (Acts 5:29)
Daniel in the Babylonian Captivity served in a context where his people were being terribly abused. Yet, he is notable in refusing to compromise his faith while at the same time consistently honoring the king. In interpreting a troubling dream to Nebuchadnezzar in Daniel 4, Daniel said to the king: "My lord, may the dream concern those who hate you, and its interpretation concern your enemies!" (Dan. 4:19). What an attitude! Daniel did not hate this oppressive proud king. Rather he wished him well even though he fully knew the truth of his prophecy must be fulfilled. It's his attitude that stands out! When Darius was manipulated (against his will) to throw Daniel in the Lion's den, the next morning Daniel greeted the king with "O king, live forever!" (Dan. 6:21) To me Daniel is a stalwart example of submitting to God ordained authority and yet doing so in a way that does not compromise the faith. This too is our calling.
Both Peter and Paul strongly emphasized submission to God-ordained governing authorities (cf. Rom. 13:1-7; Titus 3:1-2; 1 Pet. 2:13-17). Both died at the hand of these governing authorities. Were they wrong? No they died faithful in SUBMISSION to their Lord! The way of the cross is the way of death - death to self for the glory of God! This too is our calling!
The concern of the Christian is ultimately God and His glory. It is foreign to the way the world thinks and sadly foreign to the way many professing Christians think. God's ways are not our ways - they are higher and ever better. Even when we must disobey our governing authorities we must do so with an attitude of humility that accepts the consequences without spite. Even in this we are to have an attitude of submission that is honoring to God. Ultimately, in submitting to God-ordained authority our SUBMISSION is to God! Many miss a main point in the book of 1st Peter. Peter writes to the "suffering saints" and he constantly calls on them to do "good". The emphasis on doing "good" in 1st Peter is that of submitting to God-ordained governing authorities even when it hurts. This is "commendable before God" (1 Pet. 2:20).
Modern "Christians" seem to know a lot about our "rights" but how much do we know about biblical HUMILITY and biblical SUBMISSION? The judgment seat of Christ will reveal the answer in FULL!
Romans 13:1–2 (NKJV)
1 Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God.
2 Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves.
Titus 3:1–2 (NKJV)
1 Remind them to be subject to rulers and authorities, to obey, to be ready for every good work,
2 to speak evil of no one, to be peaceable, gentle, showing all humility to all men.
1 Peter 2:13–17 (NKJV)
13 Therefore submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake, whether to the king as supreme,
14 or to governors, as to those who are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and for the praise of those who do good.
15 For this is the will of God, that by doing good you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men—
16 as free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God.
17 Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.
Submission without Compromise - Devo