Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Tim. 2:15

King James AV1611


Romans was taught by Dr. James Modlish



Outline of the Chapter:

I. Recognize the functions of government (13:1-7)

A. Where do governments originate?

[1]. Ordered and established by God

[2]. "The powers that be" (presently)

B. Rebellion against government is rebellion against God; (Note exceptions in notes)

C. The legitimate powers of government
[1]. Protect from evil, provide services
[2]. They have two special powers
    (a). To execute wrath
    (b). To require tribute

D. The proper Christian response
[1]. Listen to conscience
[2]. Render

II. Remember two central things (13:8-14)

A. The power of love

[1]. See it as a debt

[2]. Pay it to everyone

[3]. Thus fulfill the law

B. The nature of the present age
[1]. Time to wake up
[2]. Time to cast off
[3]. Time to put on




Romans Chapter Thirteen is the shortest chapter in the book. The chapter primarily deals with our responsibilities as Christians (and for that matter non-Christians) toward "the powers that be". The rule is, the government no matter what form in which it may appear, is designed to bring law and order and be a terror to the evildoer. Sometimes government fails at one or both of these and in so doing, loses its right to rule and expect obedience.

Here are some exceptions to the rule of subjection to higher authority:

[1]. Obvious contradictions to the Word of God. (Ex. 1:15)

[2]. Needless endangerment of God's people. (Neh. 2:9-20)

[3]. When government interferes with spirituality. (Dan. 6:9,10)

[4]. Self-defense. (2 Sam. 3:1)

[5]. When the government joins with state religion. (2 Kings 1)

[6]. When the government attempts to hinder the preaching of the gospel. (Acts 5:29)

Otherwise, "let every soul be subject..."


13:1 "Be subject" - (1 Pet. 2:13; 1 Tim. 2:2; Ex. 22:28; Prov. 29:2; Heb. 13:17; Tit. 3:1)

"For there is no power but of God..." - (Dan. 4:17; Jn. 19:11)

Ordained - definition: To set in order; to establish. Note this does not mean that God approves of everything that government does. Government is designed to bring order, it was established or ordained for this purpose.

13:2 "Damnation" - condemnation or judgment. See notes on Romans 8:1, temporal and eternal damnation. Romans 14:23.

13:3 When a ruler becomes a terror to good works, he loses his right to be obeyed and will not rule with the blessings of God, although his position is ordained by him.

13:4 "...for he beareth not the sword in vain ... a revenger to execute wrath ..."

Capital punishment: (Gen. 9:5,6) {before the law}; (Ex. 21:12) {under the law}; (Acts 25:11) {under grace}.

See also: (Lk. 22:36; Num. 35:30-33; 1 Kings 42; 1 Sam. 28:16-18; 15:19)

13:5 We should not only obey governments out of fear, but also for our conscience sake.

13:6 " ye tribute..." - (Lk. 20:22-26; 23:2)

13:7 "Tribute" - personal contribution to government, money, services, praise; tax.

"...custom to whom custom..." - From here comes the saying, "When in Rome do as the Romans do."

13:8 "Owe no man anything..." - along with the 10th Commandment probably America's most violated scripture. The Bible is not big on deficit spending and commercial credit. The only exception is that we owe love one to another. Romans 12:10.

"...for he that loveth another hath-fulfilled the law..." Why? (Verse 10), "love is the fulfilling of he law." (Eph. 3:19; Matt. 22:37-40; Jn. 1:17; 3:16; Rom. 10:4). Jesus Christ is the embodiment of God's love.

13:9 (Ex. 20:14,13,15,16,17). The NASV omits, "Thou shalt not bear false witness..." Hmmm.

"...if there be any other commandment..." it is not keep holy the Sabbath!

"Love thy neighbor..." - (Lev. 19:18; Gal. 5:14; Matt. 19:19; Jam. 2:8; Mk. 12:31; Lk. 10:27)

13:10 Love is the fulfilling of the law, because genuine love will avoid the offense of the commandments.

13:11 "...time to awake..." - (1 Cor. 15:34; Eph. 5:14; 1 Thess. 5:5,6)

"...salvation nearer." (Lk. 21:28)

13:12 "...the day is at hand..." - (2 Cor. 6:2)

"...cast off the works of darkness..." - (Eph. 4:22-, 25; Eph. 5:11; Rom. 6:21; 1 Pet. 2:9)

"...let us put an the armour..." - (Eph. 6:10-18)

13:13 "...walk..." - (Eph. 2:2,10; 4:1,17; 5:2,8,15; Col. 2:6)

"Chambering" - definition: lewdness. This is the only occurrence of this word in the Bible.

"Wantonness" - definition: lack of restraint; lasciviousness; recklessness.

13:14 "...put ye on..." - (Eph. 4:24; Col. 3:10; Rom. 8:29; Gal. 4:19; Eph. 5:18; Col. 3:16)

"...make not provision..." - (Rom. 6:11-16) "lust of the flesh" - (1 Jn. 2:16; Jam. 1:14,15)

All sins can be classified as a violation of one of the five basic drives God put in man:

[1]. Self-preservation

[2]. Appetite

[3]. Dominion

[4]. Procreation

[5]. Rest

-Page Navigation-

Chapters: Introduction | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16