Submitting to Government

Series: The Foreigners | Week 3: Foreign Request

Read 1 Peter 2:13-17

1. What examples of human authority are given in these verses?
2. Who are we supposed to fear?
3. Who are we supposed to respect (or in some translations, “honor”)?

In his book to exiled Christians, Peter encouraged them to submit to governmental authority. Peter lived during a time of cruel and sadistic leadership. He wouldn’t have approved of or endorsed the vast majority of what governing authorities did. Yet he still said to submit with a willing spirit, giving fullest awe and fear to God.

Our current culture is full of political tension. While it’s easy to get swept away in anger or fear, we’re urged to keep a proper perspective. We can be involved in political processes with conviction, but we also need to understand the limited influence of worldly governments. The best way to change the world isn’t through rebellion. It’s through proclaiming the Kingdom of God like Jesus did.

When it comes to government authority, do you tend to respond in anger or fear? How does today’s passage convict you? Spend some time surrendering anything you’ve struggled to view through a lens of biblical submission. Ask God to help you fear Him above all else, and commit to submitting to government in a way that pleases Him.

Want to go deeper? For more on this topic, listen to Aaron Brockett's message, Honoring Government When Government Isn’t Always Honorable, from our series in Romans.

The Foreigners