Obey… Without Question?

I’ve seen some use scripture (such as Romans 13:1-7) to justify doing everything our leaders tell us to do without complaint. Some even go as far as telling others they’re not being “good Christians” if they don’t also obey.

On the surface, yes we need to obey the law. One reason is what good are we to God if we’re all in prison?

How then can I justify rebelling instead obeying the laws (or orders) signed by some governors and mayors at this time?

The simple answer is: they’re illegal orders.

During declared emergencies (which is what happened here), no one–not even the President or Congress–has the right to suspend our constitutional rights (except in the case of martial law, but it has not yet been declared). Plus, the US is not run by rulers, as such. Our Constitution is based on the premise that everyone in authority are our servants, not the other way around. The People have the power, not our elected (or appointed) officials. No member of our government has a legal right to violate our constitutional rights, so to rebel against orders that violate the Constitution is actually obeying the law, not the other way around.

To change directions a tad, in a comment on my last entry I touched on why all these orders about staying home, avoiding all social gatherings including church, etc. goes against God’s law.

Leviticus describes in detail what a person must do when/if they get infected with a contagious disease. First, it must be verified by a priest, and if confirmed, they must quarantine themselves in seven-day increments until the symptoms completely disappear and stay gone for another seven days. In every case (including leprosy), the person infected is responsible for making sure no one else gets infected (see Leviticus 13:45).

One thing I’ve noticed about Leviticus is not only what’s said, but what isn’t said. When it comes to preventing the spread of disease, the onus is always on the infected to prevent the disease’s spread. Under no circumstances were the healthy forced to quarantine themselves, act like they themselves are infected regardless, stop working and shut all economic and community activities down. Also, not once (that I know of) did God tell his people to not gather for fellowship, worship, and praise.

Those who stress passages about obeying authority also tell us that any violation of God’s law is exempt from obeying said authority (although there may be a cost for disobeying). For instance, God would never obligate us to commit a crime such as murder simply because the governing authority tells us we must.

The same goes for government officials taking away our God-given and constitutionally protected rights. It’s our legal duty to put a stop to it either by protest, petition, voting and/or through the courts. Anything less is actually violating what God said about obeying authority, because all those avenues I just mentioned are legal, and our right to exercise.

One question to think about when considering God’s character through all of this: when given a choice, would God want us to willingly choose oppression to the point we fear everything and everyone around us, we can’t work to feed our family, gather together in fellowship, and openly praise and worship him?

2 thoughts on “Obey… Without Question?

  1. I do not agree with Andra’s stance on this one, but I do not possess the knowledge of the Bible that Andra has, to be able to prepare a detailed response to her position. I just do not see God wanting his people to freely wonder about, when the science tells us that doing so will increase the number of people who will be infected and die or be physically and financially adversely affected by the Corona Virus infection, and extend the duration of the existence of the virus. God makes it clear in the Bible we should love everyone and do our best to protect the weakest among us. I do not believe doing something that will kill or physically and financially ruin many of us, is in line with God;s directives that we love everyone and do our best to protect the weakest among us. At the same time, I can understand how people who have lost their jobs as a result of State ordered stay at home orders, may believe differently. However. I also believe God will provide for those who believe in Him… you just have to truly believe in Him and wait for things to work out, which I acknowledge, could be quite some time from now. Believing and trusting in God, can be difficult at times, but the Bible has plenty of examples of how people have lost just about everything in their lives, but were ultimately rewarded big time for their faith!

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    1. As with a lot of decisions we make in life, the choices are not always binary. No one’s suggesting we shouldn’t care for the weakest among us, but there are so many ways of protecting them without being forced to sacrifice everything and everyone else to accomplish it. Few are suggesting we throw all caution to the wind either. As I’ve said many times, if people are high risk or are around those who are high risk, they should absolutely take precautions. I would never suggest otherwise. Again, it’s about freedom.

      It’s also easy to say God will provide for those who believe, but what about those who don’t? Plus there are plenty of Christians who’ve faced financial and physical ruin for a slew of reasons, some of which they had no control over. God doesn’t promise we’ll be protected from everything in this life, only in the next.

      Or to put it all into a single thought: forced compassion isn’t compassion anymore than taxes are charity. Yet that’s what people (and some in government) are telling us we must believe and accept—or else.

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