Christians and the Law

I’ve had a lot of great conversations with a variety of people because of my stance on obeying the law: I believe that I, as a Christian, should obey every law that my nation legislates, as long as that law does not require me to disobey the law of God. For example, I try my very best not to speed, not to jaywalk, not to have MP3s illegally, etc. I’m pretty good at it, but having a sinful nature, I sometimes fail.

The several non-Christians I’ve talked to about this respect my decision but think it’s not necessary. The many Christians I’ve talked to about this frequently rationalize it away somehow and end up continuing to break the law. I’ve convinced a good amount of brothers and sisters, but I’m batting like .200.

This article that Carol sent me addresses the issue in a way that I haven’t been able to do. The author presents a very compelling personal experience to support the idea that obeying the law as a Christian is definitely beneficial.

“You’re are very strange, man,” said a voice behind me. It was Kevin, one of the guys on my dorm floor. “No one else—and I mean no one—waits for the light to change before they walk.” I responded candidly, telling him that I was trying to obey God about something that probably seemed pretty unimportant for most people, but not for me. I told him about the ticket, showed him my scars and explained that I was trying to figure out what God had to say about obeying mundane laws. Thus started a series of conversations that finally led to his becoming a follower of Jesus. You can read more about it here.

http://www.intervarsity.org/studentsoul/item/dont-walk

Can’t we all agree that obeying the law is at least a good idea? Please comment me your thoughts. Let’s talk.

9 thoughts on “Christians and the Law

  1. Tiffany

    I posted this on Jo’s xanga already, but thought you should know too: “Ben taught me to have confidence in my singing when I was in FCS. He encouraged me to speak up and take charge as “business manager,” which he appointed to me knowing that I had no idea how to do it, and yet was confident I would succeed. That meant a lot to me. =)”
    Happy Birthday Ben!

  2. Mickey

    I think you’re right on the money here. God calls us to submit to every authority and it should be every Christian’s delight to do so. Yet, it’s so maddeningly difficult. We are such sinners!

    Nice post

  3. yeast

    does that mean i can’t speed on the freeways anymore? =(

    i agree we never get it 100% right, but like you said, we should strive to. It’s always a huge satisfaction when God helps us overcome our sinful habits!

  4. benyu

    Conclusions are one thing, and arguments are another. I’d be wary of using the argument that “it helps someone’s salvation” for a number of reasons, one of which being that so many things (including our own evil/sin) are used by God for good that anything of our own doing/merit isn’t worth hinging another’s salvation on it (e.g. – so and so a Christian dated and non-Christian and they became a Christian, therefore we should [or at least shouldn’t be against] Christians dating non-Christians. But regardless…

    I don’t get what’s so hard about interpreting Romans 13 (submitting to governments), Matthew 5 (“be perfect”), etc. as literally as they seem to be, that is, to obey the law of the land as long as it is not in contradiction with God’s Law (according to one’s own interpretation, but that’s another subject). One can’t say that we shouldn’t listen to “bad governments” since they don’t “serve God” because God even calls King Nebuchadnezzar (of Babylon, an enemy of Israel), “My servant” (Jeremiah chapters 25, 27, & 43). The governments (whether deemed “good” or “bad”) are placed there by God for us to obey. Honestly, the only reason I can think of that people feel a need to rationalize the other way is to feel better, and not feel so guilty about disobeying the law of the land. Is it ever not for selfish gain? Can it ever be justified for some “greater cause” and not just “‘cuz I get something out of it”? Why does it matter that it’s hard/impossible to obey every law? Isn’t that the point? That we CAN’T and therefore leads to a recognition of the need for a solution NOT of our own effort to receive/earn/attain salvation, namely being seen as righteous and perfect in God’s sight?

  5. Sosho

    hey Ben,
    lets talk about this sometime, this is something that bothers me a lot now and then, Im pretty confused and unconvinced as to what to do sometimes, and am constantly changing my mind, which is sometimes worse because it leads to what may be hypocritical actions =/

  6. http://www./

    mhm, leggendo in giro i links… teosofi (?) apprendo che la mia definizionedi "Fascisti New Age" non è del tutto peregrina.O non c'ho capito 'na beata come al solito? :Dguru

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