Civil Disobedience

Our God is a God of order. We are commanded to obey the civil authorities that are over us. We are also called to pray for them in 1Timothy 2:1-2. Read carefully the following New Testament verses about obedience:

1. For God is not a God of disorder but of peace. Be sure that everything is done properly and in order. (1 Corinthians 14:33a, 40 NLT)

2. Everyone must submit to governing authorities. For all authority comes from God, and those in positions of authority have been placed there by God. So anyone who rebels against authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and they will be punished. For the authorities do not strike fear in people who are doing right, but in those who are doing wrong. Would you like to live without fear of the authorities? Do what is right, and they will honor you. The authorities are God’s servants, sent for your good. But if you are doing wrong, of course you should be afraid, for they have the power to punish you. They are God’s servants, sent for the very purpose of punishing those who do what is wrong. So you must submit to them, not only to avoid punishment, but also to keep a clear conscience. Pay your taxes, too, for these same reasons. For government workers need to be paid. They are serving God in what they do. Give to everyone what you owe them: Pay your taxes and government fees to those who collect them, and give respect and honor to those who are in authority. (Romans 13:1-7 NLT)

3. Remind the believers to submit to the government and its officers. They should be obedient, always ready to do what is good. (Titus 3:1 NLT)

4. For the Lord’s sake, respect all human authority—whether the king as head of state, or the officials he has appointed. For the king has sent them to punish those who do wrong and to honor those who do right. It is God’s will that your honorable lives should silence those ignorant people who make foolish accusations against you. For you are free, yet you are God’s slaves, so don’t use your freedom as an excuse to do evil. Respect everyone, and love your Christian brothers and sisters. Fear God, and respect the king. (1 Peter 2:13-17 NLT)

To me, after reading the above Scriptures, I thought that it was quite clear what the Bible teaches. But then I thought, “What happens when there is a conflict between God’s laws and man’s laws?” I began searching the Internet and gleaned the following response from Probe Ministries, which I thought was excellent and really put it in perspective for me:

Question of Civil Disobedience PDF

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Defender of the Christian Faith
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