1Therefore I exhort you, brothers, through the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God, which is your reasonable service. 2And do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, so that you may approve what is the good and well-pleasing and perfect will of God. (LEBRomans 12:1, 2)
14Bless those who persecute, bless and do not curse them. […] 17Pay back no one evil for evil. Take thought for what is good in the sight of all people. 18If it is possible on your part, be at peace with all people. 19Do not take revenge yourselves, dear friends, but give place to God’s wrath, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. 20But “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by doing this, you will heap up coals of fire upon his head.” 21Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. (LEBRomans 12:14–21)
1Let every person be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except by God, and those that exist are put in place by God. 2So then, the one who resists authority resists the ordinance which is from God, and those who resist will receive condemnation on themselves. 3For rulers are not a cause of terror for a good deed, but for bad conduct. So do you want not to be afraid of authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from it, 4for it is God’s servant to you for what is good. But if you do what is bad, be afraid, because it does not bear the sword to no purpose. For it is God’s servant, the one who avenges for punishment on the one who does what is bad. 5Therefore it is necessary to be in subjection, not only because of wrath but also because of conscience. 6For because of this you also pay taxes, for the authorities are servants of God, busily engaged in this very thing. 7Pay to everyone what is owed: pay taxes to whom taxes are due; pay customs duties to whom customs duties are due; pay respect to whom respect is due; pay honor to whom honor is due. (LEBRomans 13:1–7)
“What Paul teaches in this passage has to be understood against the background of the OT itself, in which Israel was instructed, especially in the time of the exile, to respect governing authorities, even to pray for them: Jer. 29:7 (“Seek the welfare of the city to which I have exiled you and pray to the Lord on behalf of it, for in its welfare will be your welfare”).”
1First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, 2for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. 3This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, 4who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. […] 8I desire then that in every place the men should pray, lifting holy hands without anger or quarreling; (ESV1 Timothy 2:1–8)
11Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul. 12Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation. 13Be subject for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether it be to the emperor as supreme, 14or to governors as sent by him to punish those who do evil and to praise those who do good. 15For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. 16Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God. 17Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the emperor. (ESV1 Peter 2:11–17)
12Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, 13while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. (ESV2 Tim. 3:12–13)
9When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the witness they had borne. 10They cried out with a loud voice, “O Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long before you will judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?” 11Then they were each given a white robe and told to rest a little longer, until the number of their fellow servants and their brothers should be complete, who were to be killed as they themselves had been. (ESVRevelation 6:9–11)
20The mother was the most amazing one of them all, and she deserves a special place in our memory. Although she saw her seven sons die in a single day, she endured it with great courage because she trusted in the Lord. 21She combined womanly emotion with manly courage and spoke words of encouragement to each of her sons in their native language.
22I do not know how your life began in my womb, she would say, I was not the one who gave you life and breath and put together each part of your body. 23It was God who did it, God who created the universe, the human race, and all that exists. He is merciful and he will give you back life and breath again, because you love his laws more than you love yourself.
24Antiochus was sure that the mother was making fun of him, so he did his best to convince her youngest son to abandon the traditions of his ancestors. He promised not only to make the boy rich and famous, but to place him in a position of authority and to give him the title Friend of the King. 25But the boy paid no attention to him, so Antiochus tried to persuade the boy’s mother to talk him into saving his life, 26and after much persuasion she agreed to do so.
27Leaning over her son, she fooled the cruel tyrant by saying in her native language, My son, have pity on me. Remember that I carried you in my womb for nine months and nursed you for three years. I have taken care of you and looked after all your needs up to the present day. 28So I urge you, my child, to look at the sky and the earth. Consider everything you see there, and realize that God made it all from nothing, just as he made the human race. 29Don’t be afraid of this butcher. Give up your life willingly and prove yourself worthy of your brothers, so that by God’s mercy I may receive you back with them at the resurrection. (GNT2 Maccabees 7:20-29)