The Minister of God in Blue
Romans 13:4 For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to [execute] wrath upon him that doeth evil.
Intro: For thousands of years, the world has understood the necessity and the benefits of law enforcement.
- Judges 18:7 Then the five men departed, and came to Laish, and saw the people that were therein, how they dwelt careless, after the manner of the Zidonians, quiet and secure; and there was no magistrate in the land, that might put them to shame in any thing; and they were far from the Zidonians, and had no business with any man.
Who would have ever believed that we would live in a time where criminals are being released from their cells, and police officers are being released from their duties AT THE SAME TIME.
Who would have ever believed that major political candidates boldly announce on national media that they support DEFUNDING THE POLICE.
In New York City, they have eliminated cash bail and dismantled major task forces and departments.
In Baltimore City, they pr
I. The Representatives of God – vs. 1
God is the source of all power.
Daniel told King Nebuchadnezzar that in Daniel 4:
- Daniel 4:25 …till thou know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will.
Any power on earth that is recognized by God is power that came from God.
The powers that be are ordained of God.
God instituted the family in Genesis 2.
God instituted civil government in Genesis 9.
We are commanded to be “subject” unto the higher powers.
This is a willing; voluntary and deliberate exercise of one’s free volition.
We find that same word in Titus:
- Titus 3:1 Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work,
Verse 1 teaches us that the powers that be “are ordained of God.”
Verse 2 calls them “…the ordinance of God…”
No less than three times, this passage uses the phrase “minister of God.” See verse 4
Twice in verse 4 and again in verse 6; “…for they are God’s ministers…”
What is Paul saying?
The Apostle Paul is recognizing that those in authority represent God’s passion for law and order.
God is a huge proponent of law and order.
Can I prove that?
God is a God of LAW:
- 30 If his children forsake my law, and walk not in my judgments;
- 31 If they break my statutes, and keep not my commandments;
- 32 Then will I visit their transgression with the rod, and their iniquity with stripes.
God is a God of ORDER:
- 1 Corinthians 14:40 Let all things be done decently and in order.
In this country, we have a constitutional republic. We elect our leaders.
A constitutional republic is a form of government in which a representative is elected by the people to govern over them, according to the rules established in the law of the land. An example of a constitutional republic is the United States’ form of government.
U.S. citizens elect a President, and other representatives, who then govern them as the Constitution directs them to.
Our leaders are public servants, but they are also “the higher power” that Romans 13 is talking about.
As long as they are leading us within the parameters of the Constitution, we are bound by Scripture to follow them.
Even though in America, we have a form of government that is “Of the people, by the people and for the people,” once our leaders are elected, they become that “higher power” that Romans 13 is talking about.
II. The Resisters of God – vs. 2
God’s word is very clear: “Whosoever resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God…”
It goes on to say, “…and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation.”
RESIST: to set one’s self against, to withstand, resist, oppose
Whosoever – this means everybody.
The politician or the protester.
The rulers and the rioters.
The Lawmakers and the law breakers.
Either one – if they resist the power, they resist the ordinance of God.
Plain and simple!
Mark this down: a person that resisteth the power will also resist God.
- Acts 7:51 Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye.
King Solomon had some wise words about this matter of resisting authority:
- 2 I counsel thee to keep the king’s commandment, and that in regard of the oath of God.
- 3 Be not hasty to go out of his sight: stand (persist or continue) not in an evil thing; for he doeth whatsoever pleaseth him.
- 4 Where the word of a king is, there is power: and who may say unto him, What doest thou?
- 5 Whoso keepeth the commandment shall feel no evil thing: and a wise man’s heart discerneth both time and judgment.
- Ecclesiastes 10:4 If the spirit of the ruler rise up against thee, leave not thy place; for yielding pacifieth great offences.
III. The Revengers of God – vs. 4
- Romans 13:4 For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil.
A. The Fear
- vs. 3 – “For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power?”
Let me say this: God said that those in authority should terrorize evil doers; not the other way around!!
At the same time – those in authority are not supposed to terrorize those doing good works.
- Proverbs 29:2 When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn.
When our elected officials shut down churches but leave liquor stores open, that is wrong.
When the “higher powers” close places of worship but allow abortion clinics to function, that is wrong.
When “rulers” mail cease and desist letters to the church of God but allow riots to go unimpeded; that is wrong!
God never condones compliance to human authority that contradict God’s authority.
When a person is forced to choose being subject to men or to God, he’s to obey God 100% of the time!
- 27 And when they had brought them, they set [them] before the council: and the high priest asked them,
- 28 Saying, Did not we straitly command you that ye should not teach in this name? and, behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine…
- 29 Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.
Back to my point: The Bible says…vs. 4 – “But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid.”
If you choose a life of crime, you should be afraid when you see a police officer!
If you decide to disregard the law, people’s personal property and endanger society, BE AFRAID!
The law enforcement officers are a representative of the laws of this land, and their job is to enforce them.
Just their presence is a deterrent.
When I see the law parked on the shoulder of the highway, I hit my brakes, even when I’m not speeding!
I heard about a man that came to a four way stop late one night. He looked both ways and slowed down but didn’t see anybody coming, so he kept right on going. Immediately he saw blue lights in his rear-view mirror. The officer pulled him over and asked him, “Why didn’t you stop at that stop sign? You were supposed to stop.” He told the officer, “Well, I slowed down. What’s the difference?”
The police officer pulled out his ASP baton and started pounding him on his head.
Then he asked the man, “Now, do you want me to stop or slow down?”
IF THOU DO THAT WHICH IS EVIL, BE AFRAID!!
If you want to get up in the face of a police office and scream and cuss and throw things, they ought to lock you up!
B. The Friend – vs. 3c “…do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same. For he is the minister of God to thee for good.”
C. The Force – “…for he beareth not the sword in vain…”
I find it fascinating that God instituted capital punishment immediately after the Flood.
Notice before the flood how many times the Bible refers to corruption and violence.
- Vs. 11 – “The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence.”
Our society doesn’t understand this fact.
God gave the sword to the ministers in blue for them to use – not just carry on their belt.
Their weapon is more than a prop; a tool in their belt. It is the force behind badge.
Without a weapon, they are nothing more than glorified security guards.
Instead of attacking the weapons, why don’t you launch a campaign against crime?
The sword is not the problem; the weapon is not the problem.
Romans 13:4 says HE IS THE MINISTER OF GOD, A REVENGER TO EXECUTE WRATH UPON HIM THAT DOETH EVIL.
I agree – sometimes the bad guy just needs a hug. And sometimes, he needs a slug!
ILLUSTRATION: One night in South Carolina a fight broke out with some cops and the patrons of a bar. I was with a group of officers and word came over the radio that they were throwing bottles at the police. The officer I was with calmly walked to the trunk of his car, opened it up and took out a 12 gauge shotgun. A bunch of sketchy individuals came around the corner running their mouth and cussing at us. The officer racked a shell in to that shotgun and said, “It’s time to go home boys. Go on home.” They climbed in their car and got out of there. He didn’t reach into the trunk of that police car and pull out a teddy bear, or a bag of lollipops. He didn’t give them a gift card to Dairy Queen or Sweet Frog. No – he pulled out the sword and was ready to execute wrath upon them that doeth evil!
The police are not the problem.
The sword is not the problem.
The law enforcement officers are not the problem.
The problem is the bad guys.
And the problem is we have a bunch of idiots that want to DEFEND THE BAD GUYS AND DEFUND THE POLICE.
What does God say about DEFUNDING THE POLICE??
Notice verses 5-7:
- 5 Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake.
- 6 For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God’s ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.
- 7 Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.
Conclusion: Today, we honor our law enforcement and we want to fulfil the command given to Timothy by the Apostle Paul.
I Timothy 2
- 1 I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men;
- 2 For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.
- 3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour;