Romans 13:5 is even shorter and clearer than verse 3:
Wherefore it is necessary to be in subjection, not only because of wrath, but also for conscience’ sake.
Here, we learn that we need to be obedient subjects of the government that is over us. There are two reasons for this:
- Because of the wrath of the government. If we follow the laws set down by the government, we have no fear of being punished for breaking the laws. It’s that simple.
- Because of our conscience. A clear conscience allows a person to sleep better at night. A clear conscience allows us to look a person in the eye when we talk to him or her. A clear conscience helps us to walk tall (literally, in the physical sense, as well as figuratively) and keeps us healthy in mind and body, because the body is controlled by the mind, and the effects of a guilty conscience is reflected in how we walk, talk and in our general state of well-being. Even if we break the law and get away with it, we still have our conscience to deal with — at least any person who has a conscience.