New American Standard Bible
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;
King James Bible
For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same:
Darby Bible Translation
For rulers are not a terror to a good work, but to an evil one. Dost thou desire then not to be afraid of the authority? practise what is good, and thou shalt have praise from it;
World English Bible
For rulers are not a terror to the good work, but to the evil. Do you desire to have no fear of the authority? Do that which is good, and you will have praise from the same,
Young's Literal Translation
For those ruling are not a terror to the good works, but to the evil; and dost thou wish not to be afraid of the authority? that which is good be doing, and thou shalt have praise from it,
Romans 13:3 Parallel
CommentaryBarnes' Notes on the Bible
For rulers - The apostle here speaks of rulers "in general." It may not be "universally" true that they are not a terror to good works, for many of them have "persecuted" the good; but it is generally true that they who are virtuous have nothing to fear from the laws. It is "universally" true that the design of their appointment by God was, not to injure and oppress the good, but to detect and punish the evil. Magistrates, "as such," are not a terror to good works.
Are not a terror ... - Are not appointed to "punish the good." Their appointment is not to inspire terror in those who are virtuous and peaceable citizens; compare 1 Timothy 1:9.
But to the evil - Appointed to detect and punish evildoers; and therefore an object of terror to them. The design of the apostle here is evidently to reconcile Christians to submission to the government, from its "utility." It is appointed to protect the good against the evil; to restrain oppression, injustice, and fraud; to bring offenders to justice, and thus promote the peace and harmony of the community. As it is designed to promote order and happiness, it should be submitted to; and so long as "this" object is pursued, and obtained, government should receive the countenance and support of Christians. But if it departs from this principle, and becomes the protector of the evil and the oppressor of the good, the case is reversed, and the obligation to its support must cease.
Wilt thou not ... - If you do evil by resisting the laws, and in any other manner, will you not fear the power of the government? Fear is "one" of the means by which men are restrained from crime in a community. On many minds it operates with much more power than any other motive. And it is one which a magistrate must make use of to restrain men from evil.
Do that which is good - Be a virtuous and peaceable citizen; abstain from crime, and yield obedience to all the just laws of the land,
And thou shalt have praise of the same - Compare 1 Peter 2:14-15. You shall be unmolested and uninjured, and shall receive the commendation of being peaceable and upright citizens. The prospect of that protection, and even of that reputation, is not an unworthy motive to yield obedience to the laws. Every Christian should desire the reputation of being a man seeking the welfare of his country, and the just execution of the laws.
LibraryFourth Sunday after Epiphany
Text: Romans 13, 8-10. 8 Owe no man anything, save to love one another: for he that loveth his neighbor hath fulfilled the law. 9 For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not covet, and if there be any other commandment, it is summed up in this word, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. 10 Love worketh no ill to his neighbor; love therefore is the fulfilment of the law. CHRISTIAN LOVE AND THE COMMAND TO LOVE. 1. This, like the two …
Martin Luther—Epistle Sermons, Vol. II
Love and the Day
"If we Say that we have no Sin, we Deceive Ourselves, and the Truth is not in Us. "
"Therefore, Brethren, we are Debtors, not to the Flesh, to Live after the Flesh,"
Therefore whoever resists authority has opposed the ordinance of God; and they who have opposed will receive condemnation upon themselves.
1 Peter 2:14
or to governors as sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and the praise of those who do right.
Jump to PreviousAfraid Approval Authority Bad Cause Commend Conduct Desire Evil Fear Feared Free Good Hold Judges Magistrates Power Praise Reason Receive Right Ruler Rulers Terror Wilt Work Works Wrong
Jump to NextAfraid Approval Authority Bad Cause Commend Conduct Desire Evil Fear Feared Free Good Hold Judges Magistrates Power Praise Reason Receive Right Ruler Rulers Terror Wilt Work Works Wrong
LinksRomans 13:3 NIV
Romans 13:3 NLT
Romans 13:3 ESV
Romans 13:3 NASB
Romans 13:3 KJV
Romans 13:3 Bible Apps
Romans 13:3 Biblia Paralela
Romans 13:3 Chinese Bible
Romans 13:3 French Bible
Romans 13:3 German Bible
Romans 13:3 Commentaries