Celebrate Independence Day! Think like Jesus, too.
n If Jesus were a U.S. citizen, what would he humbly tell authorities?
“You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above” (John 19:11 — Jesus, to Roman governor Pontius Pilate).
n Would Jesus honor evil men? And pay all his taxes, even seemingly unfair taxes?
“Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s,” he said, “and to God what is God’s” (Matthew 22:21).
n Does he mean comprehensive compliance?
Christians must always obey those whom God put over us (Romans 13:1), unless they give us no other options than to disobey the government, or to disobey God.
Then we say with Jesus’ apostle Peter, “We must obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29).
n Is Jesus partial to America, over other countries?
“Surely the nations are like a drop in a bucket; they are regarded as dust on the scales. [...] Before him all the nations are as nothing; they are regarded by him as worthless and less than nothing” (Isaiah 40:15,17).
n How about great statesmen?
“He brings princes to naught and reduces the rulers of this world to nothing. No sooner [...] do they take root in the ground, than he blows on them and they wither, and a whirlwind sweeps them away like chaff” (Isaiah 40:23–24).
n U.S. military leaders?
“Do not put your trust in princes, in mortal men, who cannot save. When their spirit departs, they return to the ground; on that very day their plans come to nothing.
“Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the Lord his God, the Maker of heaven and earth, the sea, and everything in them — the Lord, who remains faithful forever” (Psalm 146:3–6).
n Why should we pray for people in power?
Jesus’ apostle Paul writes: “Requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving [should] be made for everyone — for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.
“This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to know the truth.” (1 Timothy 2:1–6).
Rev. Daniel A. Witte, pastor of Risen Savior Lutheran Church, can be reached at 747-5564. For more information, see www.rsavior.com. Faith Matters is a regular feature of Saturday’s Herald, written by local clergy members.