15 The king of Egypt said to the Hebrew midwives, whose names were Shiphrah and Puah, 16 “When you are helping the Hebrew women during childbirth on the delivery stool, if you see that the baby is a boy, kill him; but if it is a girl, let her live.” 17 The midwives, however, feared God and did not do what the king of Egypt had told them to do; they let the boys live. 18 Then the king of Egypt summoned the midwives and asked them, “Why have you done this? Why have you let the boys live?” 19 The midwives answered Pharaoh, “Hebrew women are not like Egyptian women; they are vigorous and give birth before the midwives arrive.” 20 So God was kind to the midwives and the people increased and became even more numerous. 21 And because the midwives feared God, he gave them families of their own.
Exodus 1:15-21 (New International Version)
God is in Charge
The Bible tells us that in the beginning, the Lord God created the heavens and the earth. Therefore, because He created all things, the Lord has dominion over all of us. With that being said, those who are in power were given their authority because the Lord gave it to them. Therefore, as Christians we must obey those whom the Lord has placed over us, for they are the Almighty’s representatives on earth.
Sin Corrupts Authority
However, just because God gave human governments their power, doesn’t mean that they rule over the people the way the Lord would want them to. Throughout history, we see corruption infect even the noblest of leaders. That’s because the heart of every man is depraved due to the sin that’s within them. In the first chapter of Exodus, we see an example of this corruption conceived by sin.
The King of Egypt saw the growing Israelite population that was in his country as a threat. At first, his solution was to force them into manual labor. When that didn’t work, he decreed something unthinkable. He instructed the midwives of the Israelite women to kill every male child the moment they’re born.
A Crisis of Obedience
For the midwives, this was a crisis. If they refused to obey the king, they run the risk of being executed for their disobedience. However, if they obeyed the king’s decree, they run the risk of angering the Lord God.
Choosing to Obey God
The midwives decided to obey God instead of the king. Even though they faced physical death at the hands of the king of Egypt, the midwives recognized that this was better than facing the wrath of Lord God who has authority over all things. For their faith, the Almighty protected them from the king’s wrath and even blessed them with children.
Making a Choice
In our Christian walk, we will be called to make a choice like the midwives did. Suppose our government puts into law something that runs contrary to what the Lord would have us do. Furthermore, if we don’t obey this law, we run the risk of being put into prison or worse. What do we do when this happens?
Obey God Above All
The Bible is absolutely clear in what our course of action must be. If we are disciples of the Lord Jesus, then we are commanded to obey His commands above all things. That would put us into conflict with the human authority and the risk of persecution at their hands. However, we must not be afraid to face hardship in the name of Christ, for our Savior is greater than any human authority and will protect us from these persecutions.