Yesterday Ria asked -
"Just curious how a Christian decides when to “submit to authority” and when not to (in relation to Nashville’s mask mandate. Seriously just curious, no hate...)"
This is a good question and I thought it deserved an answer. My answer will be imperfect, but we have talked about this question of submitting to authority a lot this past year.
The Bible says this in Romans 13 -
Every person is to be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those which exist are established by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists authority has opposed the ordinance of God; and they who have opposed will receive condemnation upon themselves. 3 For rulers are not a cause of fear for good behavior, but for evil. Do you want to have no fear of authority? Do what is good and you will have praise from the same; 4 for it is a servant of God to you for good. But if you do what is evil, be afraid; for it does not bear the sword for nothing; for it is a servant of God, an avenger who brings wrath on the one who practices evil. 5 Therefore it is necessary to be in subjection, not only because of wrath, but also for the sake of conscience. 6 For because of this you also pay taxes, for rulers are servants of God, devoting themselves to this very thing. 7 Pay to all what is due them: tax to whom tax is due; custom to whom custom; respect to whom respect; honor to whom honor.
8 Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for the one who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the Law. 9 For this, “You shall not commit adultery, You shall not murder, You shall not steal, You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the Law.
We would ask, "What is a governing authority allowed to require of it's people?"
Do we obey when our governing authority says that churches may not meet, even though other groups can gather?
Do we obey if they say you may only have one child?
Do we obey when they mandate masks?
Did the Hebrew midwives obey Pharaoh when he told them to kill the male babies being born to the Hebrews?
If we live in WWII in countries run by Nazis do we turn in Jews?
It can be hard to know what things to obey and what things a government doesn't have authority to tell you to do. It IS hard.
In the beginning of the "pandemic" we were told to not wear masks. They wouldn't help, we were told, and the country needed them for the frontline workers.
Then there came talk of therapeutic medicines that could help with cov*d or even cure it. Well, the left, and many global elites, didn't want to waste the opportunity for a 'great reset,' so they must keep up the fear mongering and now masks were all of the sudden required, and any talk of meds that could cure cov*d were forbidden.
People put on masks. We did for a time, if we went into a store. But Dr.F was saying to wear them indoors with your family. We did not do this.
Overtime, as the 'pandemic' went on we saw many reports from doctors and scientists that mask wearing wouldn't help due to the tiny nature of virus particles. In fact, they said, that mask wearing was actually not good for the health of the wearer. Our daughter who had to wear them at work had headaches all the time on days she worked.
As time continued, we saw that there was more going on with 'cov*d' than just a deadly virus. They were running the tests at such a high rate, scientists and doctors said, that the tests were picking up old dead virus in peoples bodies from old corona viruses, like the common cold.
We don't have cable so we do not see msm news, but when we did happen to see some if we were out or catch a report online, we were shocked by the negative tone of the news readers, and how grim they were making everything seem.
Slowly we started to not wear them. (our daughter continued to have to wear hers at work) but for the rest of us, we'd go into a store without a mask. Sometimes a store would require us to put one on so we had a choice. Wear a mask or not shop. Overtime we knew which shops we could go into and not be required to wear a mask.
We choose to not wear them for our health's sake, as much a possible. When I had a doctors' appointment recently I had to wear one the whole time and it was not pleasant.
We've been shocked by how people have just accepted what Dr. F says, or the narrative being driven by the msm. I overheard a conversation about people being given masks at Christmas as a gift and they were thrilled! They had the logo from the persons alma mater on it. That shocked me!
When our nation was pulling away from being ruled by Great Britain, Our Declaration of Independence stated, "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." and that "That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,"
The consent of the governed has been overlooked in our state. Our governor has bypassed the duly elected representatives of the people, and when the legislature has tried to curb him, he has appealed to our state supreme court which has a majority 7-2 liberal over conservatives and has ignored our own state constitution. Is this just? This is similar to Ol' King George ignoring the rights of the colonists, and not allowing them to have representation.
I know there are Christians who believe that the American Revolution was wrong. That they should not have broken away from GB because the King was in authority over us. I don't agree.
Do I pay my taxes? Yes.
Do I stop at red lights and stop signs? Yes.
Do I love my neighbor? Yes
When this 'pandemic' started, we talked as a family of believers, that we may be required by God to potentially risk our health in order to care for our neighbors and we were ready to do so. This has not proven to be necessary, but we were willing and ready to do so.
We've also chosen from the beginning to see our family, including our grandkids, and my elderly parents. When we've been sick, we've stayed home, as we do in cold and flu season every year!
Ria, I know that this is an imperfect answer. I can't speak to every situation, but for our family this is the way we came to our decision about mask wearing.
I'm open to discussion in the comments but if the comments get unkind or nasty, I will not post them so don't bother to say it. If you disagree with me, that is okay. I don't hate people because they think differently than me! Many people I know, even close friends, wear masks when out and that's their right to do so.