How should Christians live under a government they don’t support?


Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human authority: whether to the emperor, as the supreme authority, or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right. For it is God’s will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish people. Live as free people, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as God’s slaves. Show proper respect to everyone, love the family of believers, fear God, honor the emperor. 1 Peter 2:13-17
            Jesus, Peter, Paul and the first Christians lived under the horribly oppressive government of Rome.  They hated the Jews in Jerusalem.  Rome beat, abused and crucified them routinely.  In fact, the Romans killed Jesus, so even innocent people died.
            During this time, Peter wrote and said Christians must submit to the government authorities, the emperor even (like Nero) or the governors (like Pontius Pilate).  The goal is for the government to find no wrong in Christians but to appreciate them for being peaceful, kind, tax-paying citizens.  That’s what they respond to.
            If Christians live free, truly separated from the need to make this world and this government like heaven (it will never be), then they won’t be burdened by the affairs of politics.
            Christians must show respect and honor to those in power.  However, history has shown that Christians can make a difference standing up to racism, slavery and the abuse of silent victims (like sex trafficking).  Christians can oppose the government for positive, godly change, but they must do so respectfully and honorably, following the rules.