Daily Devotion-July 4, 2023

Daily Devotion-July 4, 2023

1 Peter 2:13-17

Submit to every human authority because of the Lord, whether to the king as the supreme authority or to governors as those who have been sent by him to punish those who do what is wrong and to praise those who do what is right. For this is God’s will: that you silence the ignorance of foolish people by doing good. Do this as free people, and do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but use it as servants of God. Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.

Dear Heavenly Father,

Sometimes, we are challenged to accomplish these words because we do not see things as our rulers see them. However, we must remember that in Peter’s day, things were no different; perhaps they were worse. Those godless, pagan rulers executed him for believing in Jesus and preaching about your love.

Yet through Peter, you tell us to submit to earthly authority because you ordained governments and use them to maintain order even if they are hostile to you; you bend them even more to do your will. So we pray for our leaders today; please accomplish your will through them! First, protect our fellow citizens from all the powers be—both physical and spiritual—that would attempt to destroy your kingdom and us. Then please use the government to punish wrongdoers and praise those who are good.

Lord, let us remember that the government does not save us, but you do, and you use them so your desires will succeed, regardless of if they agree with you. So out of love for you, we submit to the order you have ordained, so through our actions, we will serve you and others out of love for what you have done. We have genuine and lasting freedom through Jesus—his suffering and death on the cross removed sin, which bound us and all people to hell. Sin corrupts people, rulers, and the world; however, Jesus has suffered the punishment for the world’s sin, giving us freedom. This freedom does not give us a license to sin; instead, our reactions show love towards you and others.

Grant us patience so that when we must live under government officials who serve only for personal gain, you will bend them to do your will while they are in their offices, and your name will still be glorified. Forgive us when we do not want to submit to their authority; we also pray that you would protect your heavenly citizens while they are on this earth, that should worldly governments even take away the life of the body, they know they have everlasting life with you in heaven that can never be taken away. Let our actions speak as a confession of our faith in you; allow others to witness us and come to know your love and forgiveness so that true freedom from sins will ring. Amen.

Written through Pastor Roger Emmons

Freedom and love are not licenses to do whatever we wish. Freedom is serving through love, and love is making yourself less so that others might be more, serving others’ needs. Jesus said, “I did not come to be served, but to serve and give my life as a ransom for many.”