The Christian and Civil Authorities

Paul D. Feinberg | May 18, 2010

This essay is designed first to set out the Apostle Paul’s teaching on the relationship between Christians and civil authorities, and then to examine its contemporary application for Christians using the clearest New Testament text – Romans 13:1-7. This passage contains general commands for both Christians and non-Christians. Paul reasons that obedience is required because civil authorities have been ordained by God (13:1b-2) and because civil rulers are responsible to maintain civic order (13:3-4). Two motivations for obedience are the avoidance of wrath and the maintenance of a good conscience (13:5). Finally, the obligations of obedience are discussed (13:6-7). It is concluded that Romans 13:1-7 is just as applicable today as it was in Paul’s time.

Vol. 10, no. 1 (Spring 1999)

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Feinberg, Paul D.. "The Christian and Civil Authorities." The Master's Seminary Journal 10, no. 1 (Spring 1999): 87-99.