This week has seen the invasion of the Hong Kong Parliament building. The protestors are concerned about the future of democracy. Protests against authority pose difficult questions for Christians. What is the best way to bring about change? Does passive resistance work or do we need to take more direct action? 1Peter 2 says we should submit to all authority and Paul in Romans 13 says that to rebel against those in authority is to rebel against God. However, Christians both in the Bible and through the centuries have resisted the ruling authority – whether it was refusal to worship an image or burn incense at the altar; or protesting against injustice and seeking to change society. Christians in Britain in 19th and early 20th Centuries were at the forefront of protests and involved in trade union demonstrations and strikes, which brought benefits to society as a whole. I had a friend whose father was a Welsh steel worker and who couldn’t understand how Christians could vote for a Conservative government. He was a strong Christian involved in the trade union, including striking. Our democratic freedoms were bought at the price of those who resisted authority – both Christians and those who would deny God. In fact, freedom of worship in Britain was brought about through defying authority. Let’s pray for a peaceful resolution in Hong Kong.

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