We are instructed by the Bible to live law-abiding lives and to perform good works to the glory of God. Let’s look at what the Scriptures say:
My son, fear both the Lord and the king, and don’t keep company with rebels. (Pro 24:21 ISV)
Then Jesus said to them, “Give to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and give to God the things that are God’s.” (Mt 22:21 NCV)
Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. (Rom 13:1 NIV)
He gave himself to rescue us from everything evil and to make our hearts pure. He wanted us to be his own people and to be eager to do right. (Tit 2:14 CEV)
Remind them to be subject to rulers and authorities, to obey, to be ready for every good work . . . (Tit 3:1 NKJV)
Clearly, as believers, we must live in two different realms. We live in this carnal world, which is very much opposed to the plans and purposes of God. Simultaneously, we are citizens of a heavenly kingdom with Christ as our Lord and King.
We’re called to represent Christ in the midst of this sinful and pain-filled society without allowing ourselves to become contaminated by it. The only way that we can succeed is by obeying the Word of God; and by following the leading of the Holy Spirit as He counsels and leads us, individually.
By living holy lives and being valuable, law-abiding citizens, we prevent the gospel of Jesus Christ from being slandered and vilified.
By living in peace and harmony with our neighbors, and importantly with other believers, we demonstrate our good works in:
- being courteous to all;
- doing good works within a civic framework as well as within a spiritual framework; and
- submitting to our governing authorities.
These points are achieved practically in being honest in business; paying our taxes; being good neighbors; conducting ourselves in an orderly way; and obeying the laws of the land. In conducting ourselves along these guidelines, we fulfill the Scripture that says:
Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves. (Mt 10:16 KJV) We are being wise and harmless! Glory to God most high!