Thursday, January 26, 2017

Wisdom Principles: Dealing with Those in Authority

The king's wrath is the herald of death, but the wise will appease it. 15 When the king's face brightens it spells life, his favor is like the rain in spring.
Proverbs 17:11
The wicked person thinks of nothing but rebellion, but a cruel messenger will be sent to such a one.

Like the roaring of a lion, the anger of a king, but like dew on the grass his favor.

Like the roaring of a lion is the fury of a king; whoever provokes him sins against himself.

If you take your seat at a great man's table, take careful note of what you have before you;
2if you have a big appetite put a knife to your throat.

3Do not hanker for his delicacies, for they are deceptive food.

Fear Yahweh, my child, and fear the king; do not ally yourself with innovators;22 for suddenly disaster will loom for them, and who knows what ruin will seize them and their friends?

In the presence of the king do not give yourself airs, do not take a place among the great;7 better to be invited, 'Come up here', than be humiliated in the presence of the prince.

Obey the king's command and, because of the divine promise, 3 be in no hurry to depart from it; do not be obstinate in a bad cause, since the king will do as he likes in any case.
4 Since the word of a king is sovereign, what is the point of saying, 'Why do that?'
5 One who obeys the command will come to no harm; the heart of the sage knows the right moment and verdict, 6 for there is a right moment and verdict for everything; but misfortune lies heavy upon anyone 7 who does not know what the outcome will be, no one is going to say how things will turn out.

If the anger of the ruler rises against you, do not leave your post; composure mitigates grave offences.

Do not ask the Lord for the highest place, or the king for a seat of honor.

Do not try to carry a burden too heavy for you, do not associate with someone more powerful and wealthy than yourself. Why put the clay pot next to the iron cauldron? It will only break when they bang against each other.
3 The rich does wrong and takes a high line; the poor is wronged and has to beg for pardon. 4 If you are useful the rich will exploit you, if you go bankrupt he will desert you.
5 Are you well off? - he will live with you, he will clean you out without a single qualm. 6 Does he need you? - he will hoodwink you, smile at you and raise your hopes; he will speak politely to you and say, 'Is there anything you need?'
7 He will make you feel small at his dinner parties and, having cleaned you out two or three times over, will end by laughing at you. Afterwards, when he sees you, he will avoid you and shake his head about you.
8 Take care you are not hoodwinked and thus humiliated through your own stupidity.

When a powerful man invites you, be reserved; and he will invite you the more often. 10 Do not push forward, lest you be repulsed; and do not remain at a distance, lest you be forgotten.

Do not affect to treat him as an equal, do not trust his flow of words; since all this talking is expressly meant to test you, under cover of geniality he will be weighing you up.

And if anyone requires you to go one mile, go two miles with him.

Pray for those who persecute you

Pay Caesar what belongs to Caesar -- and God what belongs to God. See also Mark 12:17, Luke 20:25

When you are invited by any one to a marriage feast, do not sit down in a place of honor, lest a more eminent man than you be invited by him; and he who invited you both will come, and say to you, ‘Give place to this man,’ and then you will begin with shame to take the lowest place. 10 But when you are invited, go and sit in the lowest place, so that when your host comes he may say to you, ‘Friend, go up higher’; then you will be honored in the presence of all who sit at table with you. 11 For every one who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”

Everyone is to obey the governing authorities, because there is no authority except from God and so whatever authorities exist have been appointed by God.2 So anyone who disobeys an authority is rebelling against God's ordinance; and rebels must expect to receive the condemnation they deserve.3 Magistrates bring fear not to those who do good, but to those who do evil. So if you want to live with no fear of authority, live honestly and you will have its approval;4 it is there to serve God for you and for your good. But if you do wrong, then you may well be afraid; because it is not for nothing that the symbol of authority is the sword: it is there to serve God, too, as his avenger, to bring retribution to wrongdoers.5 You must be obedient, therefore, not only because of this retribution, but also for conscience's sake.6 And this is why you should pay taxes, too, because the authorities are all serving God as his agents, even while they are busily occupied with that particular task. 7 Pay to each one what is due to each: taxes to the one to whom tax is due, tolls to the one to whom tolls are due, respect to the one to whom respect is due, honor to the one to whom honor is due.

Remind them to be obedient to the officials in authority; to be ready to do good at every opportunity

I urge then, first of all that petitions, prayers, intercessions and thanksgiving should be offered for everyone, 2 for kings and others in authority, so that we may be able to live peaceful and quiet lives with all devotion and propriety.

For the sake of the Lord, accept the authority of every human institution: the emperor, as the supreme authority, 14 and the governors as commissioned by him to punish criminals and praise those who do good. 15 It is God's will that by your good deeds you should silence the ignorant talk of fools. 16 You are slaves of no one except God, so behave like free people, and never use your freedom as a cover for wickedness.17 Have respect for everyone and love for your fellow-believers; fear God and honor the emperor.