Submission to authorities, ministers of God. Does this mean they are allowed to abuse their power and authority?
Romans 13:1 - 6
ESV - 1 Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.
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I would say quite the contrary. Earthly authority figures will be accountable to God for the use of the power which His decretive or permissive will has entrusted to them, and the standard of conduct to which He will hold them will be progressively higher, and their punishment for misconduct progressively more severe, in proportion to the amount or degree of power or control that they have been given (Luke 12:47-48). Also, despite Paul's admonition of obedience to earthly authorities in the passage from Romans cited in the question, Christians have a higher duty to God, and are not obligated to obey commands that seek to force them to abdicate or violate the principles of their faith (Acts 5:27-29). (However, Christians should also be prepared to accept the temporal consequences of such disobedience.)
Here, Paul is saying that Civil Government are ordained by God thus resisting the authority of the Government is resisting the ordinance of God and will be subjected to judgement.The purpose of human government or civil government is to uphold the good and punish the evil; in other words to restrain the criminal elements of society(even though some civil government are often run by evil men). Christians (and all mankind) should be law-abiding citizens of the government under which they live, in all their attitudes and relations of life, making special effort to be honorable in all things. Christians are to obey the government as longs as the government does not demand citizens to violate God's Word. This does not mean however, that civil government, judges, pope and priests are above the law of the land or exempt from the law of God. They are also accountable to the law of the land and must give account to God for their actions.
SUBMISSION TO AUTHORITIES Abuse of Power The pages of history are littered with the stories of government authorities and religious leaders of people, cities, church's and nations whose corruption and descent into moral chaos were related directly to their lack of self control. It is the responsibility those in power to serve others out of love. Those in power have the responsibility serve others out of love. They must take the opportunity to love the neighbor, based on mutual self-giving rather than the quest for power and status. As Jesus reminds us in (John 8:4-9) "He that is without sin among you, let him cast the first stone at her." Position in life does not matter, we all sin, no one is exempt from the final judgement of Jesus.
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