“For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, The Lord is our king, he will save us.” Isaiah 33:22
What a powerful verse, when you really stop and think about the interactions between the kings of old, the kings of present, and all the kings that have been or ever will be. Kings who have been tyrants, requiring the toil and oppression of their subjects as they are forced to bow before them on bended knee.
We can see this all throughout history and we can surely see it in the Biblical accounts as power and prestige have a way of turning men into monsters as their thrones often lead them to exalted hearts that desire that their subject should lavish on them, not just respect or honor as is custom for their positions but actual worship of them, their power, their thrones, and they themselves. And the worship that they desire and often demand is the worship and state of exaltation that must only be reserved for the one true King.
We need only look back at the story of Pharaoh and his enslavement of the Hebrews and his absolute defiance as God sent plague after plague, even in as much as pursuing them after they had freed, changing his mind because his heart was so hardened and God to his glory swallowed them all up in the Red Sea as they defiantly pursued his enslaved children,
We know the story of how after God freed them they cried for an earthly King over them and even after God had them warned by the prophet that this was a very bad idea and that they would regret it and that when they did regret that he would not hear their cries because they knew what they were getting when asking that God’s sovereign care over them be replaced with the “leadership” of a mere man, so God allowed them to have that king,
Much as we have in our society trampled over the good things that God desired to do for the nations, choosing instead to have flawed humans make choices and enact laws that by which we are all bound. Much like leaders of today that bind us all by laws of their choosing that are an offense and abomination to God, decisions that all of earth is defiled through.
We also know through the account of king Saul that even after God took his anointing from him and gave it to David, that Saul still just couldn’t let go of that power trip, instead of seeking repentance he chose to seek out the “counsel” of the dark side, causing the death of him and his house.
This is one that may not be as familiar but it is an account that should strike fear into leaders who choose to believe their own press and promote their own praise and chose to persecute God’s chosen.
“Now about that time Herod the king stretched forth his hands to vex certain of the church (decided to persecute them) and he killed James the brother of John with the sword.
And because he saw that it pleased the Jews, he proceeded to take (seize) Peter also, (Then were the days of unleavened bread.)
And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people.
Peter therefore was kept in prison; but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him.
And when Herod would have brought him forth (was about to bring him out), the same night Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains; and the keepers (guards) before the door kept the prison (standing guard).
And behold, the angel of the Lord came upon him (stood by him), and a light shined in the prison; and he smote Peter on the side, and raised him up, saying, Arise up quickly, And his chains fell from his hands.
And the angel said unto Gird thyself, and bind on thy sandals (get dressed and put on your shoes). And so he did. And he saith unto him, Cast thy garment about thee, and follow me.
And he went out, and followed him; and wist (knew) not that it was true which was done by the angel; but though he saw a vision (did not know if it was real or a vision).
When they were past the first and the second ward (guard posts), they came to the iron gate that leadeth unto the city; which opened to them of it’s own accord (the gate opened itself); and they went out, and passed on through one street; and forthwith the angel departed from him.
And when Peter was come to himself (realized it was all real), he said, Now I know of a surety (for certain), that the Lord hath sent his angel, and hath delivered me out of the hand of Herod, and from all the expectations of the people of the Jews (God had rescued him from their plans).
And when he had considered the thing (thought about it), he came to the house of Mary the mother of John, whose surname was Mark; where many were gathered together praying.
And as Peter knocked at the door of the gate, a damsel came to hearken (answer), named Rhonda.
And when she knew Peter’s voice, she opened not the gate for gladness, (she was so happy to see him she forgot to let him in), but ran in, and told how Peter stood at the gate.
And they said unto her, Thou art mad (insane), But she constantly affirmed that it was even so, Then they said, It is his angel.
But Peter continued knocking; and when they had opened the door, and saw him, they were astonished.
But he, beckoning unto them with the hand to hold their peace (motioned for them to be quite), declared (told) them how the Lord had brought him out of the prison.
And he said, Go shew (tell) these things unto James, and to the brethren. And he departed, and went into another place.
Now as soon as it was day, there was no small stir among the soldiers, what was become of Peter.
And when Herod was highly displeased with them of Tyre and Sidon: But they came with one accord (with one purpose) to him, and having made Blastus the king’s chamberlain their friend, desired peace; because they their country was nourished by the king’s country (Herod supplied those countries with food).
And upon a set day Herod, arrayed in royal apparel sat upon his throne, and made a oration (speech) unto them.
And the people gave a great shout, saying, It is the voice of a god, and not of a man.
And immediately the angel of the Lord smote him, because he gave not God the glory: and he was eaten of worms, and gave up the ghost (died).
But the word of the Lord grew and multiplied.” Acts12:1-24
So much in those passages, I love the angelic rescue and the fact that those who had prayed without ceasing thought the one who announced to them that those prayers had been answered was insane,
It is also a truly gruesome picture of the swift judgment God brings.
Nothing in any of these accounts resembles the attributes of the one true King, the King of Kings, by whom all other kings are allowed the authority they wield.
Now let’s talk about HIM!
And just as he promised he would and did come to save us!
“And it came to pass, when when he was come nigh to Bethphage and Bethany, at the mount called the mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples, Saying, Go ye into the village over against (opposite) you; in the which at your entering ye shall find a colt tied, whereon yet never a man sat: loose him, and bring him hither (here).
And if any man ask you Why do ye loose him? thus shall ye say unto him, Because the Lord hath need of him.
And they that were sent went on their way, and found even as he had said unto them. And as they were loosing the colt, the owners thereof said unto them, Why loose ye the colt?
And they said, The Lord hath need of him.
And they brought him to Jesus: and they cast (spread) their garments upon the colt, and they sat Jesus thereon. And as he went, they spread their clothes in the way (on the road).
And when he was come nigh (near), even now at the descent of the mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen.
Saying, BLESSED BE THE KING THAT COMETH IN THE NAME OF THE LORD: PEACE IN HEAVEN, AND GLORY IN THE HIGHEST.”
Note the awesome symbolism there as they threw their garments down paving the road for the Lord, as we have to throw off all our old ways, our sins, and all that hinders us, laying it all down at the feet of Jesus in exchange for something so beautiful in him. And rejoicing and praising God as he travelled Mount Olives, in mirror to the fact that one day He will return, coming down on Mount Olives in triumphant glory in his rightful role as King over earth.
He already is, He created everything and He is King but one day all the world will be very aware of that fact, whether they have believed or have chosen to deny his existence, it will never change the fact of who he is is and will forever be.
But unlike the kings we have studied and the kings and rulers of this earth, Jesus loves us, he does not use cruelty and force to make people worship him, we worship him because we adore him.
And our King did not ask us to die for him, He died for us, he left his glorious throne in heaven and came to this earth in the most humble of ways and he healed us, protected us, spoke in defense of us,, blessed the deaf to hear, gave sight to the blind, and resurrected the dead, and cried with those who cried, calmed the storms washed the feet of his followers and giving all he had with his mercy, kindness, and gentleness he gave his life for us.
The perfect Lamb, spotless and without sin, never once did he ever do anything wrong, a feat that no human could ever accomplish, but Jesus did.
And he allowed himself to be humiliated, tortured, and crucified for us.
He is perfect, He is Holy and He is the only one true king.
As we go into the Holy week, keep these things in mind and rest your soul in him.
“NOW unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen” 1 Timothy 1:17
Thank you for reading! God bless you in the upcoming week and join me next time as we look at the cross and the price our beautiful Saviour paid for us in his role as the Holy spotless Lamb.
Φλογιζω 2021NBJ/ Reverend Nina Brown Johnson
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