No, I dont' think I'm misrepresenting you, but I think your misunderstanding what I was saying. I'm saying that Romans 13 doesn't teach what you said it did at all.
In its contextual study, Romans 13 and the 'higher powers' have nothing to do with submitting to (worldly)Govorning authorities even though the church has predominately been taught that perspective through the ages starting possibly with Erroneous' obviously romanized interpretations(or before).Originally Posted by Didymus
P.S. [added 11/28/10] Even take note of sec 2,3 & 25 of article 1 of Pennsylvania's constitution. Individual religious liberty, power of the people and recognition of "HIGHER POWERS" are extant from the Govornment. Not that the powers of God rely on mans recognition or declaration of them (as sec 25 & 3 states)
To give a beginning point for what the Higher POWERS are referring to; consider the Attributes of Goodness and Love of the Creator as the HIGHER Powers. And consider the Freedom/Liberty, and Right of those qualities to exist and to Be Expressed due to the Reality and Essence of his BEING and HIS Eternal, Omnipotent, Unchangeable nature.
These attributes (Powers) were now openly displayed by God in and through the Works of his incarnation during the acceptable year (lifespan) of the LORD (continuous).
Notice especially the context of Love in the preceding section of chapter 12 and especially in chapter 13 verses 7-10.
I think this perspective can even be supported from circling back to his eternal qualities and powers that were talked about in Romans 1:20.For there is no (Essential) POWER but of (from) God's Being.Rom 1:18 ¶ For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
Rom 1:19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed [it] unto them.
Rom 1:20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, [even] his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
If they who had recieved and known HIS GOODNESS and MERCY in their souls dont' fear and respect that Goodness, Mercy and LOVE of God to others they/we will likely bear HIS (God's) infliction.
In addition "Rulers" could just as or more easily be referring to Apostles and Spiritual Leaders or Celestial Rulers rather than secular (worldy) leaders as it had also in Rom 12:8And as it was indicated by the fact of the letter being written to those with the knowledge of God'.[Or he that exhorteth, on exhortation: he that giveth, [let him do it] with simplicity; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that sheweth mercy, with cheerfulness. ]
But its also possible that his decree is for all souls to also include the worldly govornments to learn to respect the individual worship and service of God through Goodness and Love and in Freedom (LK 1:74,75).
Paul in talking to personal recievers of that Goodness and Love; (John 1:16) says to let every one of them, (Christians from highest to lowest) (and perhaps others also) submit themselves and reciprocate these Higher points and freedoms of God's Character which they now posess and which Christ exemplified. (even in his death).
Note also; the new covenant is individual, associated, eternal while the way of seeking corporal blessing or attain peace through attempting to obey civil, counterfeit religious / corporal national law passed away and is condemned.
A thorough inductive / objective / contextual study would be in order; and I'll leave it up to you to do that.
Again; Note Huey Lewis; "Power of Love" song.