Question: Shouldn't the believer simply comply with their governor's mandates, after all, we have Romans 13 telling us to do so?
Romans 13:1–8 (ESV)
1 Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, 4 for he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God’s wrath but also for the sake of conscience. 6 For because of this you also pay taxes, for the authorities are ministers of God, attending to this very thing. 7 Pay to all what is owed to them: taxes to whom taxes are owed, revenue to whom revenue is owed, respect to whom respect is owed, honor to whom honor is owed. 8 Owe no one anything, except to love each other, for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.
First, we must ask:
Does the governor, head of the executive branch (a law enforcer not a lawmaker), sworn to protect the constitution, been given the authority to make such mandates or executive order?
Remember, our founders wanted to make sure that the highest level of authority in the USA was not a person or group of people but a document called the US Constitution. They did not want a king. Hince the first three words of the Constitution "We the people..." Not "We the government..." Nor "I the governor...."
We should always honor the authority placed over us. Unless that authority dishonors God. For US citizens the ultimate authority is the US Constitution. The governor is the enforcer of the Constitution not the creator of it.
If the governor mandates expressions of worship, for example, your face covered or your head covered, the distance between worshipers, the types of instruments that can be played or used during worship, the number of worshipers on a stage or in a room. He/she has not honored the US Constitution that they swore to protect. Which clearly states.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
In fact, when you read amendment 1 the governor should not be making laws, mandates, or executive orders in the first place. It is not their responsibility given by the Constitution. Some would argue that He/she may have temporary permission to make mandates. This may be true but these executive orders should go through congress to ensure it is "We the people..." not "I the governor..."
Bottom Line: Pastors, clergy, and ministers it is time to look into the word of God and truly decide to embrace the expression of freedom God desires all people to have.
It is a biblical mandate to assemble together. It is a biblical mandate to lay hands on each other. It is a biblical mandate to worship in songs, hymns, and spiritual songs. It is a biblical mandate to hear the preaching of God's word together. It is a biblical mandate to share in communion or breaking of bread together. You can not do some of these things over the internet. Governors should not override our biblical mandates. The church must not comply with non-biblical executive orders. We must honor God first in our expression of worship and gathering.
Leadership Advice NOT Legal Advice