Submission to Authorities
(1 Peter 2:13–20)
1 Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which is from God. The authorities that exist have been appointed by God. 2 Consequently, whoever resists authority is opposing what God has set in place, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.
3 For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Do you want to be unafraid of the one in authority? Then do what is right, and you will have his approval. 4 For he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not carry the sword in vain. He is God’s servant, an agent of retribution to the wrongdoer.
5 Therefore it is necessary to submit to authority, not only to avoid punishment, but also as a matter of conscience. 6 This is also why you pay taxes. For the authorities are God’s servants, who devote themselves to their work. 7 Pay everyone what you owe him: taxes to whom taxes are due, revenue to whom revenue is due, respect to whom respect is due, honor to whom honor is due.
Love Fulfills the Law
8 Be indebted to no one, except to one another in love. For he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. 9 The commandments “Do not commit adultery,” “Do not murder,” “Do not steal,” “Do not covet,” a and any other commandments, are summed up in this one decree: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” b 10 Love does no wrong to its neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.
The Day Is Near
11 And do this, understanding the occasion. The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber, for our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. 12 The night is nearly over; the day has drawn near. So let us lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. 13 Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. 14 Instead, clothe yourselves with c the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the desires of the flesh.