Jeff Sessions and Romans 13: Should Christians Always Obey the Government?

"Last week, Attorney General Jeff Sessions sought to defend the Trump administration’s immigration policies, especially with regard to separating families. At one point, he stated, 'I would cite you to the Apostle Paul and his clear and wise command in Romans 13 to obey the laws of the government because God has ordained the government for his purposes.'" Christian Headlines

Related: Romans 13 and the Thorny Moral Questions Posed by Illegal Immigration

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Bert Perry's picture

....that we would have a cultural memory of early Christians disobeying Caesar's law requiring Romans to sacrifice to him, but perhaps not.

The biggest nasty thing about this kerfuffle is that Congressional Democrats are posturing about how horrible it is that Trump is enforcing a law they wrote and passed.  Um, guys, pot meet kettle?  Whatever the relative virtues or vices of the law, maybe step up to the plate and try to fix the issues?  Article 1 of the Constitution and all?

Edit: and really, Article 1 should have been Sessions' approach.  What he said plays well if he's campaigning in the South, I'm sure, but if he wants to make his point to the nation as a whole, he's got to appeal to what all people, not just evangelical and fundamental Christians, say they hold as an authority.  You don't like what we're doing?  Fine.  Change the law.  We are only following the law you guys wrote and passed.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Aaron Blumer's picture


In a country where few take the Bible seriously, officials should generally avoid overtly biblical arguments. 

... plus, they usually don't get the argument right either. 

Views expressed are always my own and not my employer's, my church's, my family's, my neighbors', or my pets'. The house plants have authorized me to speak for them, however, and they always agree with me.