Written by Sam Lisak / October 2016
Looking at my life, it isn’t very hard to see the blessings that God has given me. I’ve got a great family, a job, a Christian education, and a country that allows me to freely practice my religion. I have been blessed with not only a country that allows me to be a Lutheran, but in a time where Christians still are persecuted, it has not reached the extreme that it was at other times in history.
James 1:17 says “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.” When you hear this verse it’s very easy to first think of food or shelter or clothes, but it also includes the government which is a very large blessing. Governments, in most senses, are established to help people in a way of life. We have roadways, police, transit systems, voting rights, parks, libraries, and many other things because of government. There are 27 amendments giving us certain liberties, and even though there are laws that do the opposite and restrict us, they are made for our good.
While we don’t know what the future holds for our government, we do know that the God who died on the cross for our sins continues to be with us and always will be.
At a time when it is very easy to get a negative image of the government with all of the violence, gay marriage being legalized, and the current issue with transgender bathrooms, it is often easy to overlook all of the good things the government does for us. There are plenty of other countries where hearing God’s Word can be very difficult or a punishable offense. ISIS has been infamous for their mass killings of Christians. There are plenty of other countries where Christianity is either illegal or highly persecuted. It’s in comparison to these things that we can realize the true blessing our government is. We are able to share the good news that Jesus died on the cross for our sins to others in our communities without fear of punishment. This is something we should want to share to others in our lives.
God has given us a government and expects us to behave towards it a certain way when he tells us in Romans 13:1, “Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God.” He goes on to explain in verse 5 that He is ultimately in control, “For he [ruler] is God’s minister to you for good. But if you do evil, be afraid; for he does not bear the sword in vain; for he is God’s minister, an avenger to execute wrath on him who practices evil.” While we don’t know what the future holds for our government, we do know that the God who died on the cross for our sins continues to be with us and always will be. Because He lives! We know that He uses all world events and governments (whether good or evil) to preserve and protect His Church. Going forward, don’t forget to not only pray for those God has placed in charge over us, but thank Him for them.