walk in the word
For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. 1 Peter 2:15
We are all natural-born rebels. We also have a built-in resistance to submission. Submission has a terrible reputation these days, so it’s hard to get even sincere people to consider it seriously. But for the next couple minutes, will you open your mind to the biblical concept of submission? If you do, you will see that when properly understood and applied, submission replaces the pain and strife of our natural rebellion and greatly increases our joy.
Blessing and favor comes to the person who lives in submission. Why? God’s will is “that by doing right you may silence the ignorance of foolish men” (1 Peter 2:15). Are you in a situation where you’re being unfairly treated? Do right and silence the ignorance of foolish men. That word silence actually means to muzzle. You say, “There are some people I would love to muzzle.” Great! God’s all for putting a muzzle on them but you have to know how to get that done. It’s by doing right, trusting God, waiting upon Him, and living a life of biblical submission.
The choice between submission and rebellion affects every part of life. Think about this list of contrasts:
|Love (“You before me”)||My rights|
|Waiting on God||Acting on my own|
|Trust and obey||Doubt and disobey|
We are to “do right” not matter what.
Are you struggling with injustice? Have you been passed over for a promotion at work? It’s not right and it’s so political. What should you do? “Do right and silence the ignorance of foolish men.”
Has someone turned against you in a relationship and injured you? “Do right and silence the ignorance of foolish men.”
Have you experienced a marriage breakdown and people think they understand what happened? Do you wonder how to defend yourself? Do what’s right and silence the ignorance of foolish men.
Submission to authority is like living under an umbrella. When we choose to submit, we put ourselves under God’s protection. That’s a wonderful place to live your life. Some bad things might be coming down, but submission is a covering. It’s your place of protection. When you get out from under that, you become very vulnerable. The promises of God do not extend to you when you choose to live as a rebel. However, when you choose to live under the umbrella of God’s protection by submitting to His plans and doing what’s right, all the promises and blessings of God are yours in abundance.
The apostle Peter was on this same page when he wrote to the suffering Christians in the early church. First Peter 5:5 says, “Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for ‘God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.’” That is a phenomenal truth: God is opposed to the proud. In this context, the proud would be the unsubmissive. But He gives grace to the humble—those who will live under God’s authority. At the end of the day what really matters is the favor and the blessing of almighty God.
Lord, there are enough selfish, sinful people in positions of responsibility today to stifle anyone’s joy. But Lord, my eyes are on You, who watches and knows each step I take. I choose by faith to walk in obedience to Your Word. Help me to put off pride and put on humility in the midst of hardship. Give me strength to live in submission, not ultimately to human authorities, but to You alone. I offer myself to you afresh for those kinds of victories. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
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