Law Enforcement in the Scriptures

Below is a list of both the Old and New Testament passages where the role, service, office, or type of law enforcement officers is found either implicitly or explicitly. We encourage you to use this resource to research the calling under which the peace officer operates.

Old Testament

Genesis 3:24 - Police of Eden: cherubim, powerful police with weapons (better than a "Glock")
Genesis 4:8 - First homicide: Cain and Abel
Genesis 34:2 - First rape case: Dinah (daughter of Jacob)
Genesis 37:20 - First conspiracy to commit murder: Joseph's brothers
Genesis 37:24 - First jail: Joseph in a cistern
Genesis 37:31 - Forensics: blood-stained coat
Genesis 37:36; 39:20; 40:3; 41:10 - Top cop: Potiphar, captain of the palace guard
Genesis 40 - Cupbearer: secret service (test the food and provide security)
Genesis 42:17, 24 - House arrest
Numbers 13 - Undercover work: Joshua and Caleb
Joshua 2:1 - Undercover work: spies to search out Jericho
1 Samuel 22:14 - David: bodyguard to King Saul
1 Samuel 26:15 - Abner: personal bodyguard
1 Samuel 28:2 - David: bodyguard to Philistine King Achish
1 Kings 10:5 - Secret Service: cupbearers to Solomon
2 Kings 1:9 - Leadership vs. Management: police sent to take Elijah into custody
2 Kings 11:4-12 - Security force ("United States Secret Service Uniformed Division"): temple police, bodyguards, religious police
1 Chronicles 18:7 - Benaiah: King David's bodyguard
Nehemiah 1:11 - Secret Service: leadership management
Nehemiah 4:9 - Shift work
Nehemiah 7:1-3 - Police protections for a city: gates, gatekeepers, duty, citadel, Police Chief Hananiah
Job 24:1-4, 13-17 - Criminals
Psalm 44:6-8 - Protection not in weapons
Psalm 101 - A police officer's prayer
Proverbs 29:2 - Results of righteousness among police (authority)
Isaiah 9:7 - Justice and righteousness belong together
Isaiah 33:15-16 - Godly police motto
Isaiah 56:10-12 - Lazy and blind police
Isaiah 62:6 - Watchmen on your walls
Jeremiah 40 - Nebuzaradan: good officer
Ezekiel 9:1 - Heavenly Police: spiritual realm, guardian angels over cities, nations, and individual people
Ezekiel 10:12 - Cherubim: heavenly police
Ezekiel 28:14-19 - Satan: was a heavenly guardian cherub but was fired for being a bad cop
Ezekiel 33:2 - Watchman: police guarding a city
Daniel 2:17 - Arioch: commander of the kings guard, good officer
Daniel 3:2 - Sheriffs
Amos 2:6-8 - Corruption and criminal activity
Amos 5:7, 10, 12 - Those opposed to justice and righteousness, accepting of perjury and bribes
Amos 5:15 - Justice and the court system: hate evil, love good
Amos 6:12 - Justice into poison, righteousness into bitterness
Micah 6:8 - Good police motto: justice, mercy, walk humbly with God
Zechariah 9:11 - Jail: waterless pit, cisterns

New Testament

Matthew 8:5-13; Luke 7:1-10 - Roman officer of Capernaum: Jesus healed servant
Matthew 27:54; Luke 23:47 - Roman officer at the cross
Matthew 27:65 - Police at tomb
Mark 15:16 - Military police from the palace
Luke 3:14 - Honest police
Luke 22:52 - Temple police
John 7:45 - Temple police
John 18:12 - Military police
Acts 4:1 - Military police over the Temple (captain of the guard)
Acts 9:2 - Saul: special deputy
Acts 10 - Cornelius: chief of police
Acts 16:22-30 - Jailer (corrections officer): asks the most important question in the Bible
Acts 16:35 - Court officers
Acts 17:9 - Bonding practice
Acts 17:31 - Jesus as the Supreme Judge
Acts 21:31-32 - Riot police, military police
Acts 24:1 - Tertullus: lawyer (bought and paid for)
Acts 24:22 - Claudius Lysias: police commander in charge of Jerusalem
Acts 25:3 - Festus: in charge of the police, both civilian and military
Acts 27:1-3 - Julius: captain of the imperial regiment
Acts 28:16 - Paul's house arrest
Romans 13:1-5 - Where law enforcement gets its authority
2 Corinthians 10:4 - Heavenly weapons available to Christian police
Ephesians 6:10-20 - Protective gear
Philippians 1:12 - Corrections officer guarding Paul, palace police
Philippians 4:21 - Palace personnel, palace police among them
Revelation 20:1 - Angelic police arrest and detain Satan

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