5 Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience. 6 This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God’s servants, who give their full time to governing. 7 Give to everyone what you owe them: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor.Romans 13:5-7
Paul’s call to submit to governmental authorities falls under the larger Biblical theme of obedience. The word translated “obey” in the Old Testament means “to hear” and is often so translated. Our obedient response to God’s Word is a response of trust or faith. Thus, to really hear God’s Word is to obey God’s Word. Our first priority is to submit to or obey God. All other submission flows from our relationship with the Lord.