Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Politics: How Are Christians to Act?

Too many Christians are focused on a party to fix our problems. Although this sermon is at least a few years old, as Pastor Adrian Rogers (Love Worth Finding Ministries: has gone to be with the Lord, the message is nonetheless timeless. This goes for any time / political situation. Titled 'The Problem of Unworthy Authorities' (from the series titled The Incredible Power of Kingdom Authority) and partially transcribed here what stood out to me.

"Here's what one man said about Nero: 'He was just 3 years old when his father died. It was little loss to the boy, for his father had been a killer, a bully and a cheat. His mother took over the family trade and continued the boy's education, she murdered his step-father with a dish of poisoned mushrooms. He was reared in squalor and proved a notable son to his parents. While still young, he committed his first murder, killing a teenage boy who stood in his way and watching him die with calloused indifference. He married at 15 but soon had his wife killed. He married again and slew his second wife also. In order to marry a third time, he murdered the husband of the woman he wanted. His mother annoyed him, so he arranged her murder - first by guile, but when that was unsuccessful, he murdered her without pretense. He was an ugly man, with a bull neck, a beetle brow, a flat nose and a tough mouth. He had a potbelly, spindly legs, bad skin and an offensive odor. At the age of 31 he was sentenced to death by flogging, he fled to a dingy basement in the house of a slave, and cut his own throat. He survived that and he gave the infant Church its first taste of things to come. His name was Nero, he was the first of the persecuting Caesar's of Rome. That's the one that Peter says "honor the king"' [1 Peter 2:17: "Honor all people, love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king."] 

......"We render unto Cesar the things that are Cesar's, we render unto God the things that are God's, but we WILL NOT render unto Cesar the things that are God's. Now let me say something about the political situation we're in right now. We as believer's in Christ need not identify the Church with any political party, but always with the Kingdom of God. We need to be able to tell both parties to repent and get right with God. The Church is not the servant of the State, the Church is not the master of the State, the Church is the conscience of the State. We will be civil, but we will not be silent. Nathan warned David, Elijah preached to Ahab, Daniel remonstrated with Nebuchadnezzar, Eliezer looked Jehoshaphat in the face and told him he was wrong, Moses was a prophet of God to Pharaoh. As long as we have a government that is trying to normalize sodomy, I cannot be quiet. As long as they are distributing condoms to children in school and normalize illicit sex we dare not be quiet. As long as a free born American is told he cannot pray vocally anywhere anytime, we cannot be silent. Nothing is politically right that is morally wrong. But if you think that an election is going to help us, let me tell you something folks....government cannot make us good, only God can make us good. Government is here to restrain evil and God's plan is a free Church in a free State, and when the Government does what it alone can do, that is, restrain evil, the Church is free to do what she alone can do and that is to preach the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ. There are problems with submission, but we need to understand that we must obey God".......

"I have talked to you about the principle, I have talked to you about the places, I have talked to you about the problems, let me talk to you about the price of submission. You think this is easy? This is the hardest thing we are asked to do. Look if you will in v.19-21 [of 1 Peter 2] "19For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully. 20For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God. 21For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: 22Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: 23Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously:", that is he appealed to the Supreme Court of the Universe and the word means He just handed Himself over to God. He had undeserved suffering, unretaliating suffering, unfrustrated suffering because He was counting on God to even the score. But you say 'Pastor, that doesn't sound fair', well let's look at v.24, speaking of Jesus "24Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness" - that is He bore our sins, He took our that wasn't fair but thank God He did it! And He left us an example that we should follow in His steps. And because of that God has highly exalted Him and given Him a name that is above every name. I'm telling you folks, God will do the same thing for us when we begin to obey Almighty God, you see it was the spirit of these early Christians that brought the Roman empire crashing down, because God gave them Kingdom Authority, and they turned that world upside down because they learned the strength of submission, they did not give in to evil, they overcame evil. Submission does not embolden tyranny, it destroys it. And they were just honeycombing that entire Roman empire, that mountain of evil with Gospel dynamite and it brought the whole thing crashing down. God gives authority to those who understand submission. We will never be over those things thats God has put under us until we get under those things that God has put over us. The Lordship of Christ, the Word of God, those institutions that God has put in place. They were killing the Christians in the Coliseum, but Cesar's gone friends and Jesus is still Lord. He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords. We have victory in Jesus."

1 Peter 2:11-3:4 (Program 1958, Air date 04.29.2012) - CLICK TO LISTEN or here TO WATCH

    1. John 15:18
    2. 1 Peter 2:13
    3. 1 Peter 2:18
    4. 1 Peter 3:1
    5. 1 Peter 2:15
    6. Luke 7:1-10
    7. What is submission?
      1. One equal, voluntarily placing himself under another equal, that God may be glorified.
      2. 1 Peter 2:13
      3. Philippians 2:6-8
      4. 1 Samuel 15:23

    1. A godless government (1 Peter 2:13-17)
      1. Honor everyone.
        1. In our social life
        2. In our church life
          1. 1 Peter 2:17
        3. In our spiritual life
          1. 1 Peter 2:17
          2. 1 Timothy 2:1-2
          3. Matthew 17:27
    2. A bad boss (1 Peter 2:18-19)
    3. A mean mate (1 Peter 3:1-4)
      1. 1 Corinthians 11:3
      2. Galatians 3:28

    1. Submission is not always the same as obedience.
      1. Acts 5:28-29
      2. Romans 12:18

  1. THE PRICE OF SUBMISSION (1 Peter 2:19-24)
    1. Jesus paid for our sins by submitting to His Father.

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