Let every person be subject to the governing authorities; for there is no authority except from God, and those authorities that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore, whoever resists authority resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment (Romans 13:1-2).
Yes, Romans 13 says that. But that is not all it says. After writing a few sentences on obeying the laws of the state, the Apostle Paul begins echoing the words of Jesus:
You shall not commit adultery; You shall not murder; You shall not steal; You shall not covet”; and any other commandment, are summed up in this word, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore, love is the fulfilling of the law (Romans 13:8-10).
Then, in the very next verse, Paul writes that “now is the moment” we need to “wake up.”
Besides this, you know what time it is, how it is now the moment for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we became believers; the night is far gone, the day is near. Let us then lay aside the works of darkness and put on the armor of light (Romans 13:11-12).
When it comes to being subject to the supreme law to love our neighbors, too many Christians today have hit the snooze button. They have pulled the covers over their heads and have closed their eyes. For whatever reason: self-preservation; greed; racism; or to protect their privileged positions, they seek darkness over light, judgment over grace, division over unity, exclusion over acceptance, and hate over love.
The Apostle John warns us of “false prophets” who possess “the spirit of the anti-Christ” and “a spirit of error” who can easily lead the people of God astray (1 John 4:1-6). Stressing how important it is for Christians possess “a spirit of love,” he then pleads:
Love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love… No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God lives in us, and God’s love is perfected in us (1 John 4:7-12).
Yes, the Bible says to be subject to the governing authorities. But it says much more than that. One would have to be asleep not to know it.
It is Father’s Day. Our neighbors are being harmed. I can not think of a better day for Christians to wake up. Now is the moment.