“Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time, for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostle—I am speaking the truth in Christ and not lying— a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.”
I Timothy 2:1-7 NKJV
We don’t pick our worldly leaders. We cast votes, we might have a party preference, but in reality our leaders are anointed by God. Each one is placed into the role of leadership in accordance with the sovereignty of God. Through my life, I have come to understand that no leader can meet everyone’s expectations, and frequently leaders come into power with many promises, only to advance another agenda once they are in office.
When Paul wrote to Timothy, in his letter, he , and much of the world, lived under the tyranny of Nero. In fact Paul was under trial when the wrote to Timothy, as the end of his life was near. Even under the circumstances he was living in, he urged Timothy and the rest of us believers later to come, to pray and give thanks for the leaders that God has appointed over us.
Regardless of our desires, we are to be good citizens, revering those in authority. Our tendency, in the flesh, is very likely to tend toward reviling rather than revering. The goal for the believer is to live a peaceable life, one which offends no one, that the message of the Gospel fall on willing ears. Adversaries shut down in the presence of those they dispise, and will not hear the message of the Gospel.
When we are under attack, it is so easy to be drawn into conflict, to return the favor. In those situations, we lose sight of the human that needs the Lord, and see our strong witness damaged and made ineffective. We lose connection to our mission, and instead, seek to fulfill our own mission. We must have the heart of Christ, even if it means taking the hit.
“Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord.”
Romans 12:17-19 NKJV
Living by faith, means believing that God will do what He promises. I have learned time and time again, that when God says “vengeance is mine, I will repay,” He will.
Every day I awaken to news stories of carnage, of betrayal, of injustice. I am troubled, and then quieted by the reminder of God’s sovereignty, as I know that He will deal with all things and bring justice into this world.
“since it is a righteous thing with God to repay with tribulation those who trouble you, and to give you who are troubled rest with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, when He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed.”
II Thessalonians 1:6-10 NKJV
The more injustice there is, the greater the recompence. We are living in a time when people are living as if there is no God, no consequence for their behavior. There are many people who seek to normalize the sins pervasive in our society, as if mere kindness will make it right.
We have become a country full of enablers, rationalizing every alternative lifestyle, every sexual taboo, the willful destruction of lives and property during “mostly” peaceful riot/protests, and even the murder of a black man under the knee of a now convicted cop.
All that is occuring is revealing the wickedness of leaders, and their powerlessness. It is also revealing our wickedness and the reality that we get the leaders we deserve.
It is also revealing the promise that Jesus will come again, as it is increasingly obvious that we fallen creatures cannot fix the world. All our efforts, while wrapped up in virtue, do little but make things worse. We seek a remedy for one group, and another gets beat down, which leads to an inevitable backlash, that makes the first injustice pale by comparison.
Let us pray for our leaders, pray for those in opposition, pray for everyone. Endeavor to find the middle ground in the culture war, where the Lord dwells. We are praying and proclaiming the Gospel so that souls be saved. There is coming a judgement to this world, and it will be complete. I want no one to face that if they can be saved. May it be our only mission to share the Good News with all who will hear.
Go today and serve your true King.
THE PRAYER CHAIR IS OPEN! Send me your requests!