The Powers that Be

Romans 13:1-8

Patriotism, Authority, Rebellion It’s 4th of July weekend.
Memorial of the beginning of the rebellion, 241 yrs ago, 1776. The colonies rejected “the Powers that be” (Rm 13:1 KJV) and began a war for independence. US history is long & complicated, with great advances and profound problems that we still wrestle with. It’s one of many nations, empires, colonies, people groups across history. Christians live within all nations, under all authorities, in tension with all. We all experience patriotism, connection to the land of our birth or ancestors or ethnic group or home.

Fallen is Babylon the Great!

Revelation 18:1-24

Patriotism, Love, and Allegiance
July 4th Weekend. Time for reflection on the relation of our faith to nation, power, politics, justice, cultural values, etc. Important ongoing discussion for U.S. Next Week some are traveling to Washington – “Worship in a spirit of Justice.” 
How does our faith relate to political power in a pluralistic society of private faith? Two pictures from the early church in the midst of the Roman empire. Not the same as ancient Israel (covenant with God), nor as participatory America with sovereign people and separation of secular state from religion.