OBE'DIENCE, noun [Latin obedientia. See Obey.]
Compliance with a command, prohibition or known law and rule of duty prescribed; the performance of what is required or enjoined by authority, or the abstaining from what is prohibited, in compliance with the command or prohibition. To constitute obedience the act or forbearance to act must be in submission to authority; the command must be known to the person, and his compliance must be in consequence of it, or it is not obedience obedience is not synonymous with obsequiousness; the latter often implying meanness or servility, and obedience being merely a proper submission to authority. That which duty requires implies dignity of conduct rather than servility. obedience may be voluntary or involuntary. Voluntary obedience alone can be acceptable to God.
Government must compel the obedience of individuals; otherwise who will seek its protection or fear its vengeance?