Rom 13:1-7


Though we have gone to another chapter, we are still dealing with the Christian and the demonstration of his faith.


This is our testimony before the world and how the Christian is to behave before the world.


In verse one we are instructed by the Apostle Paul under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit of God to be subject or in submission to the higher powers.


The word “power” is the same word and is the same in meaning as the word “authority”.


2 Cor 10:8

8    For though I should boast somewhat more of our authority, which the Lord hath given us for edification, and not for your destruction, I should not be ashamed:


We know that all things are working together for good.



Rom 8:28

28  And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.


God is in control of all things.

Let us look at the this subject of submission as we are instructed from this portion of Scripture tonight.






God is in control of all things and it is His authority to which we must submit.


Subject to God’s Word


Matt 24:35

35  Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.


Deut 4:2

2    Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.

Ps 19:7-11

7    The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple.

8    The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes.

9    The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether.

10  More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb.

11  Moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward.


Ps 119:89

89  For ever, O LORD, thy word is settled in heaven.


Prov 6:20-21

20  My son, keep thy father's commandment, and forsake not the law of thy mother:

21  Bind them continually upon thine heart, and tie them about thy neck.




Eph 6:17

17  And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:


2 Tim 3:15-17

15  And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.

16  All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:

17  That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.


Heb 1:1-2

1    God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets,

2    Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;


Heb 4:12-13

12  For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

13  Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do.


As such we are subject to His Word. It is the final Authority to man.


B. Subject to God’s plan




We know that God has a plan for the universe and everything is working toward that plan.


Isa 14:24

24  The LORD of hosts hath sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand:


Isa 14:26-27

26  This is the purpose that is purposed upon the whole earth: and this is the hand that is stretched out upon all the nations.

27  For the LORD of hosts hath purposed, and who shall disannul it? and his hand is stretched out, and who shall turn it back?


Subject to God’s power (Authority) structure.


God has ordained three institutions: the family, the government and the Church.


the Family


Eph 6:1-3

1    Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.

2    Honour thy father and mother; (which is the first commandment with promise;)

3    That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.


Col 3:20

20  Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord.


Eph 5:22-24

22  Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.

23  For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.

24  Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing.


Col 3:18

18  Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord.


1 Pet 3:1-2

1    Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives;

2    While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear.


the government


1 Sam 8:5-7

5    And said unto him, Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways: now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.

6    But the thing displeased Samuel, when they said, Give us a king to judge us. And Samuel prayed unto the LORD.

7    And the LORD said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected me, that I should not reign over them.


1 Sam 8:21-22

21  And Samuel heard all the words of the people, and he rehearsed them in the ears of the LORD.

22  And the LORD said to Samuel, Hearken unto their voice, and make them a king. And Samuel said unto the men of Israel, Go ye every man unto his city.


God ordained the government. That is He approved it as a means for people to rule themselves.


Laws cannot bring change to the hearts of people, but they can deter those who would commit crimes because they fear the punishment.


the church


Matt 16:13-19

13  When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?

14  And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.

15  He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?

16  And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.

17  And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.

18  And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

19  And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.


It is intended that the authority of each institution be followed.


How do we submit? To whom do we submit?






Col 3:20

20  Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord.


potentates in government


Titus 3:1

1    Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work,


1 Pet 2:13-15

13  Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme;

14  Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well.

15  For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men:

Pastors in God’s churches


Jer 3:15

15  And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.


Eph 4:11-12

11  And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;

12  For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:


Heb 13:7

7    Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation.


Heb 13:17

17  Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.




1Thes 5:12-13

12  And we beseech you, brethren, to know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord, and admonish you;

13  And to esteem them very highly in love for their work's sake. And be at peace among yourselves.


1 Tim 5:17-19

17  Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labour in the word and doctrine.

18  For the scripture saith, Thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the corn. And, The labourer is worthy of his reward.

19  Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or three witnesses.


Is there ever a time when we cannot carry out our duty to submit to authority?


Lester Roloff spent time in jail because he would not license his homes under the state.


Paul was beheaded by the government because he refused to withhold his convictions.


Many others have died and will die for the cause of Christ.


The Scripture teaches us to be under submission to the rule of authority.


If parental, governmental or pastoral authority conflicts with God’s Authority then God’s Authority comes first.


But we are still under the submission to the civil authorities.


Christ did not deny Himself, but He submitted to the death sentence handed down to Him from government authority.


We must trust God to prevail against those who have the authority. All authority is given by God.


John 19:10-11

10  Then saith Pilate unto him, Speakest thou not unto me? knowest thou not that I have power to crucify thee, and have power to release thee?

11  Jesus answered, Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above: therefore he that delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin.





Doing right always brings peace.


Pay tribute – burdens required at their request


Pay custom – duties, tolls, etc. imposed by country.

Fear – emotional deterrent to prevent from transgression of law.


A law officer should command a certain fear because if you commit crime he will arrest you.


A pastor should command a certain amount of fear because he is appointed by God to preach the unsearchable riches of God’s Word.


To dishonor God’s man is to dishonor God.


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