Acts 5:29 - The Verses Project

Bible Acts 5:29

Posted February 24, 2014

We must obey God rather than men.

Sam Crabtree, Bethlehem's Executive Pastor and Lead Pastor for Life Training, wrote the following 8 observations about these words spoken by Peter and the apostles in Acts:

  1. This verse is the basis for upright civil disobedience, providing a check against tyranny.

  2. It’s also the basis for civil obedience, for it is God who commands us to honor the king, obey the governor, obey parents, and submit to elders in the church. Obey both God AND man whenever possible.

  3. The king, the state, the elders, and parents are answerable to God. Such authorities are delegated authorities.

  4. When obeying God rather than men, it is crucial that the intended obedience to God is robustly tethered to the clear teaching of Scripture—not hunches, whims, impressions, and inferences.

  5. It is wise and important to make a distinction between human commands (laws) that require us to do evil, and those that allow others to do evil.

  6. Breaking a just law is not justifiable in order to protest an unjust law.

  7. Jurisdiction matters to God. That is, governments may do what others may not; it’s the difference between an arrest and a kidnapping, or between just capital punishment and wanton murder.

  8. Do not lose sight of the law of love.

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Song by Aaron Strumpel.
Artwork by Jonathan Lindsey.