We Christians around the world find ourselves in much turmoil these days. In America, a land that was founded under the guiding hand of God by our Founders, many today shun that view and say that Christians are out of touch, that the Christian faith is just a dogma of nonsense. Having either lost or having never had faith themselves, they can't conceive of anyone believing in someone by faith alone, yet we know that belief by faith is what Our Lord and Savior indicated we must do. Our belief and our religious practice is one that tries to force no one to accept the faith, instead we try to influence others by the way we live our lives as God intended. After all, as the Creator of the earth and all things in it, including mankind, we were created in His image which makes it natural that he would expect us to follow Him, His laws and guidance.
Skeptics and outright non-believers try and weaken our faith by using the words of Jesus himself as found in the following passage from the Gospel of Mark verses 16-17 (KJV):
And they brought it. And he saith unto them, Whose is this image and superscription? And they said unto him, Caesar's. And Jesus answering said unto them, Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's. And they marveled at him.
It sounds rather absolute, doesn't it? Jesus himself, when being challenged by the Jewish leaders during a teaching session, answered their comment that Caesar was ruler, responding that man should obey Caesar in the secular world, while also stating that to God they should provide allegiance in all things of the spiritual realm.
That last part, which basically requires the rendering unto God the things that are God's adds a unique difference to total and absolute adherence to Caesar. And that is why my selected opening verse from the Apostle Paul's Letter to the Romans, is cited first. It means that while we are to honor our higher authorities here on earth, those earthly authorities are, like us, creatures created by God and, as such, are expected to live as God would have them do, just like we must. So, when a secular government defiles God or tries to preclude Christians from practicing their beliefs, their actions have then gone beyond their secular purpose by infringing on a moral absolute for believers. In such cases, they have not lived up to the responsibility that God gave them as rulers and therefore we are expected to stand with God at those times.
Sometimes it may result in hard times, even death like the Apostles faced, but if we remain true to God regarding those things that are his absolutes and we love Him and have faith in Him, the suffering we might face is miniscule on the timeline of life. But the joy, love and wonders of a later eternal life with him will make it seem inconsequential in the warmth and glow of heaven above. Adn, after all, Christ Jesus went through much worth than we will ever be expected to when he died for our sins, so isn't it only appropriate that we do what we must to be true to Him? It's a question that each of us must make with our free will. Choose wisely, my friends, choose wisely.