Who Are The Governing Authorities in the USA?

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Sunday, October 25, 2015 0 comments

by Jason DeZurik

A Definition of Terms

Note: This is the beginning of a series of posts entitled:
The United States: A Unique Endeavor

As we’ve been going through the book of Romans all year at Worldview Warriors, I knew this day would come when we would get to Romans 13. It’s a very important chapter, as the entire book is important, but this chapter truly is unique, especially if you are a citizen of the United States of America.

This chapter starts out with a very powerful verse: “Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.” – Romans 13:1

As believers in Jesus Christ, we are called to be subject to the government put into place by God. So, if you have been placed under a monarchy, this is the governing authority you are to follow. If you’re placed in a democracy, then this is what you are to be subject to. Even a dictatorship; if you are under that sort of rule, well, you are subject to that governing authority that has been placed there. (I will not spend time in this writing regarding lawful and unlawful rules but suffice it to say, in my humble opinion, that Scripture does leave open the door for Christ’s followers to stand up against things that go against God and His ways as well. This will be for another time though.)

In the United States of America, we have been given a very unique responsibility and place in our government. I believe that the terms set forth in Romans 13 must be defined in order for its citizens to understand what this text is saying for our time and our culture. Without reading into the text and making it what one wants it to say, let’s just take a look at two terms from Romans 13 that I believe need to be defined. Those terms are “governing authorities” and “subjects.”

Who would be the “governing authorities” in the United States of America? Well, it’s really not difficult to figure out when one takes a look at our founding documents. The U.S. Constitution’s preamble makes it quite clear,

“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

Did you see it? That’s right. “We the people.” We The People = governing authorities.

The next term we need to define is “subjects.”
Who are the subjects in our form of government?

When I was in middle school and high school, even though I didn’t listen very well at times, I was taught that being elected to serve the people of this nation was the ultimate act of service for our country. In our form of government, those elected to governmental office are the subjects, to we the people.

Subjects = those who work for We The People

Let’s keep this in mind, We The People are actually the “governing authorities” in the United States. We The People elect our representatives and even the office of president, to serve us.

This is a very big deal. Why would this be?

Well, according to Romans 13 and in our form of government, God has established We The People as the governing authorities in this nation, which is an incredible responsibility. If the subjects, who are the elected officials and those who work for them, decide to rebel against the governing authorities, then we see in Romans 13 that they are rebelling against what God Himself has instituted and that they will bring judgment onto themselves.

Now go reread Romans 13 in that light. We are in a very unique position in the USA.

This series is to be continued.


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