Romans 13:1-14- Citizens And Saints

 

Intro: Now we noted on Sunday that Ch. 12 of the book of Romans is the Beg. Of a whole new section .

A) And the focus of this section is on Practical Christian living !

 

B) Paul spent the first 8 Chapters explaining Godís wonderful plan of Justification by faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ !

1) Paul explained how we were in Adam in sin - subject to the penalty of sin = Judgment - condemnation & death

 

C) But God sent His only Son to come to our rescue - and through simply believing in His finished work on Calvary

1) We are taken out of Adam & placed in Christ

 

D) Which results in the fact that we have been freed from the penalty as well as the power of sin - freed from the power of the Law

1) Freed to walk in a newness of Life

 

E) In Ch. 8 Paul explained the centerof this newness of life in introducing the H.S. work w/ in our lives

1) revealing that we have not only been placed in Christ but that He has placed His spirit in Us

 

F) Which results in a new power over the flesh - a new mindset concerning the world - carnally minded death - spiritually minded life & peace

1) A new position - placed in the family as adult sons & daughters

 

G) A new perspective on suffering - Prepared for glory - all things are working together for good ÖÖGodís Good !!!!!!

1) Finally a new Assurance that nothing can separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus

 

H) God is totally faithful & canbe trusted to keep His promises !

And then in Ch. 9-11 Paul gave us an illustration of the faithfulness of God seen in His dealings w/ Israel / Past / Present / future .

 

A) So Paul says in light of all of that - in light of what Christ has done for you - in light of who you are in Him ( Here is how you are to live )

 

B) Paul begins in Ch. 12 - looked at on Sunday by saying - Present bodies to God as a living sacrifice

1) In other words Give yourself whole heartedly to the Lord which is your reasonable worship!

 

C) We talked on Sunday that it is that Kind of commitment which translates itself into living worship

1) It is a mindset that says God is going to have all of me - All my heart , all my adoration, the very best that I have to give!

 

CC) How maintained V.2 Donít be conformed - Lit. Ö.. squeeze into mold

††††††††† but be transformed by the renewing of your mind

 

D) Paul spends the rest of Ch. 12 focusing on our position & place within the body of Christ - ( Focus on Sun. mornings - enlightening & doers )

 

 

But tonight we come to Ch. 13 - Focus shifts from our placein the body to our place in SocietyRead v. 1-7

 

This is a tremendous passage on the subject of the Christian's relationship to government.

A) In the scriptures we see 3 divinely ordained institutions - The family Gen.2

Govít Gen.9 /The church - Acts 2

 

B) There are no others and here in Ch. 13 Paul is dealing w/ the 2nd one Govt.

 

 

A) QuestionIf we are Christians, where is our citizenship? Heaven.

 

Do you remember Philippians 3:20, which says "our citizenship is in heaven, from whence we look for the†† coming of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ"?

 

B) In other parts of Scripture we are told that the character of Christians journeying through the world is that ofpilgrims and strangers.

1) We are citizens of heaven, journeying through this earthly time, and heaven is ourhome.

 

 

C) Sincethis is true, does it mean that we are not to have anything to do with the government and politics of earth? Not at all;

1) and this is the subject that is discussed in the 1st part of Rom. 13

 

D) because it would be easy to get an unbalanced attitude from the truth that believers have a citizenship beyond the earth.

1) Therefore we are not subject to the officials that have been in put in place to Governus while on the earth.

 

E) Paul addresses that issue here in v. 1-7V.1 13:1Let 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.

 

 

 

Here we are told that the authority behind the Govt. is God !

A) And We are to submit ourselves to governmental authorities for the very simple reason that they are ordained of God.

 

B) We might have a hard time respecting a person who is in Power - because of their wickedness - but we need to respect the position of power

1) realizing it has been appointed by God

 

C) See this in Jesus - Jn.19:10 before Pilatebut he was silent - wasnít answering Pilateís questions - so 10Then Pilate said to Him, "Are You not speaking to me? Do You not know that I have power to crucify You, and power to release You?"

11Jesus answered, "You could have no power at all against Me unless it had been given you from above.

12From then on Pilate sought to release Him,

 

In Chapter 9 of this letter to the Romans, Paul told us that God raised up Pharaoh, thatwicked, hardhearted king, and set him on the throne of Egypt.

 

In the Old Testament we are told that

 

†††† It was God who gave Nebuchadnezzar power as the mightiest monarch who ever reigned on earth.

 

†††† And we are told that Cyrus, that cruel Chaldean Lord, was his servant, raised up and set upon thethrone by God.

 

All through the Old Testament God represents himself as the controlling force behind every government on†† earth, without exception.

 

 

So Paul is well within the authority of Scripture as he writes this word to us. A) In fact, when Paul wrote these words, the emperor seated on the throne of

†††††† Rome was the infamous Nero Ė

 

B) And it is possible that perhaps in all the history of the world, there has never been a more cruel and malicious man to sit upon the seat ofpower.

 

C) Yet, when Nero was in Power Paul wrote, "Let every person be subject to the governing authorities,"

 

D) Therefore, it isn't man's elections or his revolutions that determine the governments of earth. it is the Lord

1) And someone once said that the Lord gives us the Govt. officials that we deserve ! ††Some truth to that !!!!!

 

 

If you struggle with that, suggest it is because you don't see what is behind God's purpose in the world today.

A) I think many of us, suffer from the misconception that God is really making an all-out effort to try to govern the earth properly,

 

B) and that he is having difficulty in doing so because of thestubborn resistance of men -- but he isn't.

1) God isn't attempting to govern the earth today; he never has been.

 

C) All through the span of human history, God has not been trying to govern the earth. No wonder people sometimes shake their head, and say,

 

"Well, I don't understand what is happening. I don't understand how God can permit these things. If I weregoverning the earth, I would never permit anything like that -- and you tell me that God is a God of love and wisdom! Why, then, does he allow this kind of thing to go on?"

 

This is the question that so frequently comes from the human heart. It comes because we do not realize that God is not attempting to govern the earth

 

In the garden God gave the title deed to man - but when man sinned - forfeited the title deed to the earth over to Satan - god of this world

 

C) Now when Jesus went to the cross to redeem man - He was also redeeming the earth - but He hasnít laid claim to it!

1) Rev. 4 Crying no one found worthy open scroll - title deed / The lion of the tribe of Judah - looked Lamb been slain

 

D) So the earth has been redeemed but Jesus hasnít laid claim to it as of yet - but when He returns he will - Judgment upon men - Tribulation.

1) But presently he is waiting, &He is withholding His judgment

 

E)Peter tells us, this is evidence of his love and of his mercy and of his grace, which is withholding the judgment that is necessary in order that all may have a chance tohear the gospel of his grace.

 

 

Presently God has established - Governmental institutions and set leaders in Power but He also has allowed those leaders the freedom to go their own way - & to be directly or indirectly influenced Satan !!!!

 

Society is going down hill according to the Prophecies concerning the last days - focus shouldnít be to try & straighten up our country

A) But to see people in our country come to know the Lord !

 

B) Pray for our country - pray for our leaders - call our nation to repentance - but search the scriptures no example of - mandate for political reform

 

C) The only change that ever came - was when God brought an all out revival!

 

D) When Jesus was alive on the earth / when Rome was in power - the Govt. was one of the most wicked the world has ever seen

1) Immorality - abortions - wickedness & corruption - Jesus never addressed those issues

 

E) Never attacked those systems - nor did Paul or the apostles - their focus wasnít changing world politically but spiritually

1) Our preoccupation too!

 

F) Am I suggesting we shouldnít vote or write our congressmen or the President - we shouldnít be concerned about issues ? of course not

1) but if your times limited - have to choose - work for the kingdom

So the Lord has placed those who are in Power in their position - we are to recognize that - submit to their authority realizing v.2 whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves.

 

A) Not only disobeying the Govt. but we are disobeying God !

 

B) Is there any time when we should resist the Govt. - answer is yes whenever the Govt. - seeking to get us to do something - goes against the word

1) Shad . Meshach Abendengo

 

C) Acts 4,5 Donít preach - We must obey God rather than man !

 

D) But we are not to resist the Legitimate functions of the Govt.í - but to see it as a gift of God

1) Paul sums up 2 of those legitimate functions in v. 3-7 that the Govt. is responsible for national safety - Protection & law enforcement

 

E) And the Govt. is responsible to keep the nation financially solvent

 

 

3For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same.

4For he is God's minister to you for good. But if you do evil, be afraid; for he does not bear the sword in vain; for he is God's minister, an avenger to execute wrath on him who practices evil.

5Therefore you must be subject, not only because of wrath but also for conscience' sake.

 

 

A) Notice Paul says that the Governmental authorities are Godís servants to keep the Peace & to enforce the Law

 

B) If you do good you have nothing to worry about ! But if you do evil - watch out - these guys are in place to bust you !

1) Good thing - God knows man needs to have restrictions & guidelines -

C) Gen. 9 instituted capital punishment - Life is precious in the eyes of the Lord - you take a life - you lose your own .

 

D) Not just for wrath - but for conscience sake -†† cruise control vs. Rear view mirror !

 

 

So the first obligation of Govt. is national safety - we have failed - Judicial system so messed up - no fear

 

2nd - Keep financially solvent - failed there as well - horrendous debt

6For because of this you also pay taxes, for they are God's ministers attending continually to this very thing.

7Render therefore to all their due: taxes to whom taxes are due, customs to whom customs, fear to whom fear, honor to whom honor.

 

A) Now a lot of people donít like this but Paul is saying yes we need to pay our taxes

 

B) Taxes speaks of that which was paid annually - comparable to our income tax - Customs speaks of a tax paid upon purchase - sales tax

 

C) Here is the problem we sometimes face when it comes to things like taxes

1) We look at our income - and think - Ok I have to give 10% to the Lord - for my tithe - and___% to the Govt. for taxes

 

D) What is left for me ?†† Then special things Car Reg. / Oregon $25 dollars a yr. - moved back - $700.00 to register 2 cars - not fair

1) Paul says Pay it !

 

E) Remember what Jesus said : Coin whoís face - Caesar's give to Caesar's what is Caesars & to God what is God .

 

See Jesus what Jesus was saying was - You need to give God all of you

A) Your life belongs to Him - all that your life is about - Job finances included

 

B) So I donít look at it as if this goes to the Lord - this goes to the Govt. & the rest is mine - but itís all His !

1) And He has deemed - that a certain percentage goes to the Govt.

 

C) But some argue - the Govt. is not using our tax money correctly - I wonít argue w/ that - but it doesnít matter !

1) Listen the Romans were not building churches & opening up Christian schools w/ tax dollars when the Lord inspired Paul to write this

 

So Paul is dealing w/ the Christians place in society today - as it relates to the laws & Governmental institutions in our society

A) Next Paul moves to discuss the highest law of all - the Law of love - in showing how we are to associate w/ individuals in society ! v.8-14

8Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law. 9For the commandments, "You shall not commit adultery," "You shall not murder," "You shall not steal," "You shall not bear false witness," "You shall not covet," and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself."

10Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.

11And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed.

12The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light.

13Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy.

14But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.

Paul begins: Owe no man anything

A) Now some have misinterpreted this verse to mean it iswrong for a Christian to mortgage his house. Or finance a car - is that what Paul means

 

B) Answer is no - It is not wrong because a contract, of course, is really just a mutually agreed upon arrangement by which the money is to be paid.

 

C) It is mutual agreement that only becomes a debt if you miss a payment , then you come under the enforcement of this passage.

 

D) But, of course, if you deliberately go out and contract for more than you are able to pay for, that is being dishonest .

††††††††† 1) Glorified form of stealing -

 

E) I think the context - here is important - I think this first phrase of v. 8 is linked w/ the idea of paying taxes to the Govt.

1) Donít owe them !

 

So donít get into debt financially - but there is a form of debt that is OK to have as a part of our lives / in fact its a must - debt of Love ! v.8

Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law.

 

A) Love is the key - w/out love I find myself getting upset about problems in the Country - taxes I have to pay - bitter - cynical

 

B) But we are called to be salt & light in society - reflecting,revealing - tasting of the Love of Christ to this world .

1) Paul said Rom 1 I am a debtor - in debt because of the Love that was shown to me!

 

C) Those who love fulfill the Law - all summed up in 2 commandments

Love God / Love others

D) Love is our Debt to the world & Love fulfills the law which Paul further explains in v. 9,10 ††For the commandments, "You shall not commit adultery," "You shall not murder," "You shall not steal," "You shall not bear false witness," "You shall not covet," and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself."

10Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.

 

 

Paulís point is this I am not going to be getting caught up in sins like adultery - murder -( anger ) stealing / lying if the intent of my heart is to love my neighbor

 

A) Those sins have at their root - selfishness - That attitude which says I am going to do what is best for me - and it doesnít matter to me how it affects you

 

B) So the person who lives by that mentality takes what doesnít belong to him - whether it is anotherís spouse or - fiancť or whatever

 

C) That person seeks to do away w/ whatever gets in its way

 

D) We are called to live w/ a different mindset - Love our neighbors as ourselves !

1) You love your self - look out for yourself - interested in yourself -

†† Jesus said have that same mentality - those in your path

 

E) Neighbor? Good Samaritan - Whoever the Lord brings into your Path

 

 

 

 

 

 

So Paul says our lives should be marked by love especially considering the times in which we live ! v.11-1411And do this, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep; for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed.

12The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light.

13Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy.

14But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.

 

High time our salvation is nearer than when 1st believed

A) Know the times & the seasons !It is time ! Last days - Not days to isolate

Getting bad out there Iím not going to reach out -

 

B) Not time to Isolate nor is it time to Hibernate - Paul says wake up

Eph. 5: 14Therefore He says: "Awake, you who sleep, Arise from the dead, And Christ will give you light."

15See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise,

16redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

 

1Thes. 5: 6Therefore let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober.7For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk are drunk at night.8But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation.

 

So Paul says it is time to wake up - next he says it is time to Clean up

12The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. 13Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy.

 

A) Realizing that the Lord could come at any moment & that we are living in the last days - should affect how we live

 

B) Called out of darkness to walk in the light !

 

C) Church today is lacking holiness - the world today has gotten darker - many in the Church -have followed

1) World here - Church is here

 

A man was driving through a mining region one Sunday when he noticed a large number of mules in an open field.When he inquired about this unusual sight, he was told that the work animals had been brought up from the dark passages below to preserve their eyesight. Unless they were regularly exposed to the sunlight, they would eventually go blind.The Christian needs similar experiences to keep him from losing his spiritual vision.The Lord's Day has been given to aid him in keeping his eyes focused clearly on the TRUE LIGHT!

 

D) Paul mentions putting away drunkenness / Carelessness ( revelry ) sexual immorality - ( lewdness lust ) & strife & envy !

 

E) Not into that stuff ?†† TV - movies - internet !

 

F) What watching when Jesus returns !

 

 

Time to see how close to the Lord we can get !

 

 

Paul says v.1414But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.

 

A) Putting on the Lord Jesus is putting on the Capacity to Love - seeing things w/ His eyes & His heart !

 

B) Take our thoughts captive & not give our flesh the opportunity to fulfill itís lust !