A Nugget from New Life Network
Scripture for the Day (September 27, 2018)
Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme; Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well. For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men: As free, and not using your liberty for a cloke of maliciousness, but as the servants of God. Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. (1 Peter 2:13-17)
One of our devotional subscribers asked if we would please elaborate on one of the scriptures that we used in yesterday’s devotional which is shown today as our Scripture for the Day. The following is part of our response to that subscriber’s request.
The following are some notes I made regarding 1 Peter 2:13-17. Some of these notes came from what I feel the Holy Spirit revealed to me as I read these scriptures and then some came from Greek word definitions, others from commentaries written by different theologians, and others just by mere common sense.
Every ordinance of man refers to those laws and statutes created by our secular governmental bodies to keep us safe. It is not referring to religious laws and customs created by man. As you go through the Bible you will see a constant thread of truth that we should abide by the laws of the land. But, there is nowhere in the Bible that tells us to forsake the Word of God for man’s words and customs.
For example, in Acts 3-4 we see the story where Peter and John healed the lame man at the gate of the Temple. The high priest of the temple and other religious leaders became very angry at this and had Peter and John placed in prison. The religious leaders finally called Peter and John before them and commanded them to not speak at all or teach in the name of Jesus (Acts 4:18). What was their response? Did Peter and John regard this as an ordinance of man that they were to submit to? Absolutely not! Listen to Peter and John’s response:
But Peter and John answered and said unto them, Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard. (Acts 4:19-20)
The Bible tells us that the sons of God are to be led by the Spirit of God and not men (Romans 8:14). It also tells us that we have no need of man to teach us but that the anointing of the Spirit of God will teach us the truth (1 John 2:27). This is extremely important because if we relinquish the leading of the Spirit of God, and submit strictly to the leadership of men, we open ourselves up to deception. We open ourselves up to cults, legalism, and all kinds of manipulation and control. It is our personal responsibility as believers in Jesus Christ to read the Word of God and develop a relationship with Jesus and the Holy Spirit. If we do that then we will know when any religious leader is speaking the truth and when they are not.
God does not require us to submit to a religious leader just because they have a title. That is why we have so many different churches today. We have made men and their doctrines King rather than making Jesus and His Word King. That does not mean there are not Godly Pastors and leaders out there that will assist, teach, and help mature us as Christians.
Peter also cautions us that are free not to misuse that freedom and think it gives us the right to be malicious, cruel, or haughty in any way. We are saved by grace and not by any kind of works. It is a free gift that was paid for on the cross with the blood of Jesus. But that does not give us an excuse to act holier than thou. We are to honor all men and love our brothers but not to the extent that we forsake, shy away, or become ashamed of the Word of God.
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. (Romans 1:16)