Romans 13:7– Render to all their dues.04-01-2022 - Posted by Hans
Render to all their dues, to whom tax, tac, to whom tribute, tribute, to whom fear, fear, to whom honor, honor.
This verse is the practical summary of the previous six verses. Paul had argued that all governments have authority from God. They are under God (1:1) and are therefore answerable only to Him, and not to the people they lead. That is an extremely important principle because it means that subjects are exempt from liability for what governments do. Subjects are only obliged to be submissive (subordinate). No less and no more.
Negatively, this attitude means that one does not oppose the government (:2). Positive means that subjects pay the due tax and tolls (such as levies and excise duties). How the government spends this money is not at all the responsibility of the taxpayer. He may have an opinion about it (and who doesn’t?), but worrying about it is just wasted effort and unnecessary stress.
Paying taxes and tolls is an activity. Fearing and honoring speak of an attitude. Both verbs denote “to be in awe.” Not only for the (sword) power of the government but especially for the God who has placed her in that position. For He establishes… and He removes.