Be subject for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether it be to the emperor as supreme, 14 or to governors as sent by him to punish those who do evil and to praise those who do good. 15 For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people” (I Peter 2:13-15).
Aside from the truth that God’s commands are to be obeyed, why else are believers called to be submissive to every human institution God has created? These institutions include work, school, home and government.
The Apostle Peter gives us the answer in I Peter 2:15 when he writes, “For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people.”
The phrase, ‘for this is the will of God” means that what Peter has said in I Peter 2:13-14 is what God wants, wishes and purposes His people to do. The reason for this command is also given. Now, God does not have to explain Himself when He gives us a command but in this instance He does.
The reason given for the previously mentioned command from God is that by believers doing good deeds we should silence foolish people who do not know God. To silence (φιμόω; phimoo) literally means to muzzle.
One biblical historian explains, “This section of Peter’s argument leads many to believe that the organized persecution through oppressive Roman laws either had not begun or had not yet reached the provinces of Asia Minor. Christians were then facing lies and verbal abuse, not torture and death. Christians were still enjoying the protection of a legal system which commended those who obeyed the law. So a believer’s best defense against slanderous criticism was good behavior.”
Jesus said the same thing in Matthew 5:14-16. 14 “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”
Shine brightly today, my friends. Shine brightly!
Soli deo Gloria!