Disobedience That Honored God

Against government

  1. Shiphrah and Puah disobey the Egyptian government (Ex. 1:17).
  2. Moses disobeyed the Egyptians government when he defended the cruel taskmaster (Ex. 2:11-12; cf. Heb. 11:24-27).
  3. Moses disobeyed the Pharaoh by sending the plagues (Ex. 5-10).
  4. Rahab disobeyed the government (Joshua 2:3-4).
  5. Samuel refused to forgive or unite with the king (1 Sam. 15:25-26, 350).
  6. David refused to take Saul’s armor (1 Sam. 17:38-39).
  7. David disobeyed the king to save his life (1 Sam. 19:12).
  8. Michal disobeys the king, her father to protect her husband (1 Sam. 19:17).
  9. Jonathan disobeys the king, his father to protect his friend (1 Sam. 20:9).
  10. The servants of Saul disobeyed the king’s command (1 Sam. 22:17).
  11. Saul’s armorbearer disobeyed the king’s command to kill the king (1 Sam. 31:4).
  12. Obadiah disobeys Ahab and Jezebel when they try to murder the prophets of the Lord (2 Sam. 18:4).
  13. Elijah disobeys Ahaziah even attacking his soldiers with fire (2 Kings 1:10, 12).
  14. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego disobey Nebuchadnezzar (Daniel 3:18).
  15. Daniel disobeyed Darius (Daniel 6:10).
  16. The magi disobeyed Herod (Matt. 2:10).
  17. John the Baptist disobeyed Herod (Matt. 14:3-5).
  18. The apostles and the early church disobeyed the government (Acts 4:3; 5:18, 28; 7:54; 8:1; et. al.)

    Against husband
  19. Abigail disobeyed her husband (1 Sam. 25:19, 37).

    Against parents
  20. Jacob left Laban without telling him (Gen. 31:20).
  21. Jonathan snuck out privately to attack the Philistines (1 Sam. 14:3).
  22. Jesus did not obey his parents when He stayed in Jerusalem to teach the priests (Luke 2:43, 48-49).

    Against master
  23. The donkey disobeyed Balaam though it had never disobeyed before (Num. 22:23-30).

Conclusions

  • Of all the instances of godly disobedience, the most common authority to rebel against is the government.
  • Disobedience in the home is very rarely honored (I could only find two examples, Abigail and Jesus).
  • The book of Acts includes many examples of godly disobedience often as a result of evangelism. Or, to put it in reverse, ceasing evangelism would have allowed the Christians to please the government in most cases.
  • It is not uncommon for Christians to disobey the government especially with regards to evangelism.
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