Why Todd Friel is Completely Wrong about Romans 13 and Vaccine Mandates

(Evangelical Dark Web) Todd Friel is most certainly one of the most trustworthy more establishment voices in Evangelicalism. However, there is a great split in Evangelicalism on the role of government and whether civil or even violent disobedience to government is on the table for Christians. Todd Friel takes a near absolute stance on Romans 13 and 1 Peter 2, with the only exception being if the government commands a person to sin. On the issue of vaccine mandates, Todd Friel’s argument is leads to a convoluted and squishy justification for defying vaccine mandates. But first, we should take a look at Romans 13:1-7 and 1 Peter 2:13-17.

Every person is to be in subjection to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those which exist are established by God. Therefore whoever resists authority has opposed the ordinance of God; and they who have opposed will receive condemnation upon themselves. For rulers are not a cause of fear for good behavior, but for evil. Do you want to have no fear of authority? Do what is good and you will have praise from the same; for it is a minister of God to you for good. But if you do what is evil, be afraid; for it does not bear the sword for nothing; for it is a minister of God, an avenger who brings wrath on the one who practices evil. Therefore it is necessary to be in subjection, not only because of wrath, but also for conscience’ sake. For because of this you also pay taxes, for rulers are servants of God, devoting themselves to this very thing. Render to all what is due them: tax to whom tax is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honor to whom honor. (NASB1995)

13 Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether to a king as the one in authority, 14 or to governors as sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and the praise of those who do right. 15 For such is the will of God that by doing right you may silence the ignorance of foolish men. 16 Act as free men, and do not use your freedom as a covering for evil, but use it as bondslaves of God. 17 Honor all people, love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king. (NASB1995)

In both of these passages, the sphere of government is laid out. It is to punish evil and reward good. These passages establish why God ordained these institutions in the first place. Commanding people to sin is acting outside of their sphere of authority but that’s not the only way in which the government can act outside of its authority, thus justifying a Christian to defy.

Todd Friel rejects sphere sovereignty as laid out in the Magdeburg Confession, and therefore rejects the Doctrine of Lesser Magistrates and interposition. He says so explicitly. This leaves Todd Friel in a no-mans land of navigating these “unprecedented” waters. John MacArthur famously held the same position on Romans 13, but would ultimately invoke the Doctrine of Lesser Magistrates in order to reopen his church during lockdowns.

Sphere sovereignty would establish the four spheres of authority: self, family, ecclesiastical, and the civil magistrate. On the issue of vaccines, the self and family are the proper spheres of authority, depending on the situation.

However, Todd Friel’s position that you can only defy government when it commands you to sin has him pondering strange arguments about situations where taking the COVID Vaccine is sinful. Essentially he takes a roundabout way to come to the conclusion that if and when the government mandates a vaccine, defying them is a conscience issue.

Things that are conscience issues are issues in which the state and the church have no authority over you on, per sphere sovereignty. Yet, Todd Friel’s pathway of coming to the same conclusion by a different name promotes eisegesis. In other words, his deconstructive theology on civil magistrates rewards or gives ample liberty to defy the government using the Bible to do so. The idea that the body is a temple to the Holy Spirit and doing something that puts the body at risk you could determine is sinful is a logical path that leads to dark places. Yet these are arguments that Friel employs, perhaps to not alienate a hesitant audience.

Instead, the Christian needs a…

To continue reading, as well as watch a video where this is broken down further, click here

Editor’s Note. This article was written by Ray Fava and posted to The Evangelical Dark Web


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21 thoughts on “Why Todd Friel is Completely Wrong about Romans 13 and Vaccine Mandates

  1. It’s very clear Romans 13 compels you to obey and get the vax, wear the mask and follow lockdowns. Don’t like it? then you can quit calling yourself a Judeo-Christian. And you will still get the vax, one way or another, easy way or hard way. Fortunately all the megachurches and evangelical leaders stand with 🇺🇸🇮🇱🏳️‍⚧️🏳️‍🌈

    1. Thank you Johnny for being faithful to always showing up on this christian site. By your doing the deeds of your father satan; God is using you to test me and refine me. God is sifting me and getting me ready for my final destination; the kingdom of God! There is still time for you to repent and trust in Christ! You must be born again to inherit the kingdom of God. Unless you repent; you will perish.
      The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom and understanding of the Holy One. Proverbs 9:10

    2. Are you a troll, or trying to be satirical? Your stupidity is well unforgivable. Romans 13 absolutely does not demand absolute obedience to the government that is completely absurd. Totally totally absurd and also ignores the Constitution which by the way is the ultimate law of the land not some human being who thinks they can suddenly usurped power that they were not given. You are a disease and disgusting and far more dangerous and covid if you actually believe that.

  2. I am glad to see a writeup on Todds video by Ray Fava. I watched the entire thing and it was NOT easy because I was very irritated with his ‘waffling thinking’. I too disagree with him on this.

  3. The corporation I work for yesterday mandated vaccines for all who come into the office. A friend, who works for a different corporation, got the same email today. The government (every level) desires complete and unwavering devotion and faithfulness. If they have any opposition, they do whatever it takes to crush it. Corporations quickly jump on the Marxist bandwagon. Unless you let us control your genetics, we will make sure you cannot have a job. I will try to get a “religious” exemption, but sending that to a pagan anti-Christian HR department may be useless. Changing my DNA with an mRNA genetic modifier changes who God has made me.

    1. Proverbs 3: 5Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; 6in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.…

      I prayed for you and will continue to. I dont say so to brag in the streets but so you know someone is praying for you.

    2. You are murdering people by not taking the vaxx, getting fired is going lightly on you domestic terrorists

      1. When corporations and government are in cahoots, and policy is being implemented through industry, that’s called fascism.

        That’s real fascism.

  4. Here’s the thing they don’t get to decide which laws they follow or not take them to court and sue their butt once they deny you a religious exemption. Unless you’re in the state of California you have a right to that religious exemption and really have a right to it even in the state of California they just refuse to recognize it. Don’t give up the fight and remember there are plenty of organizations such as Alliance defending Freedom or Liberty counsel who take up constitutional rights issues which is would absolutely fall into so keep fighting it no matter what they try to do to you. And keep praying I’m here with you praying.

  5. We wrote about Christians getting the vaccine at our theologyarchaeology website It is called God & the Vaccine. We found no scripture or command that would have people sinning if they took the vaccine. Read it and feel free to give us scripture we may have missed

    1. It isnt sinning to not take it either. Now you should write an article about all the deaths and life long illnesses resulting from people getting the jab.

        1. No it isn’t. That has been explained to you already. You have no excuse for lying here. If anybody is murdering people, you are, by deliberately lying about the vaccine.

      1. 100% correct, Teresa.

        I would add that forcing, extorting, or coercing people into one or the other, is an egregious sin. If anybody is sinning in any of this, it’s those who are forcing, extorting, and coercing others, making an imposing a decision that is not rightfully theirs to make.

  6. Article is very weak, and accepts some things that are not true and that our ancestors did not believe.

    I just posted a very clear post on Romans 13 that goes over these verses in the article “why you should be an abolitionist”. and on higher powers in the verses, and not earthly as in this article. I also look at the actual Greek, and how modern translations have completely corrupted these verses, comparing it to the KJB, by intentionally mistranslating of words and ignoring parts of the passage. I’m not going to repost it here.

    I do not consider my post the best thing that could be written, but it will point you in the exact direction you need to go for reading it. God’s power, not earthly. And in our government, officials are not higher powers even be explicated agreement – they are PUBLIC SERVANTS, lower in power still. What conceit and blasphemy to claim government officials are a higher power!

  7. Paul, who by inspiration of the Holy Spirit, wrote Romans 13, also was imprisoned for disobeying the government. As were many of the apostles, some who were put to death by the government, and many of the early church. It has never been interpreted to mean blind obedience to government in any and every circumstance.

    Daniel blatantly disobeyed. As soon as the edict was made that no praying was allowed, Daniel went straight out and prayed where everyone could see, in blatant, in-your-face defiance.

    When the government stops being subject to God, and instead tries to take His place, it’s time for civil disobedience.

    1. Well said. Acts 5:29 Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.

  8. What I really want to know is, did the guy who publishes the “evangelical dark web” invent fava beans?

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