We’ve been considering the ten most important spiritual truths I’ve learned over the years, starting with the earliest and continuing to the most recent.
Today we’ll finish our series with #1: God is a King.
I am an Anglophile. I am fascinated by all things British, from Buckingham Palace to the idyllic English countryside. Every time I’ve been to England I left more enthralled with the history and traditions of the British Empire. But there’s one part of Great Britain I’m glad we rejected in the War of Independence–the monarchy. The royal family is today more symbolic than despotic, but there was a day when every subject of the Crown was just that–a subject.
We Americans don’t like kings. We want to govern ourselves–the less others have authority over us, the better we like it. We are consumers who work hard for what we have and measure success by our possessions.
In recent months, the Holy Spirit has been focusing my attention more and more on a very counter-cultural theme: The Kingdom of God. Jesus began his ministry with the proclamation, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near” (Matthew 4:17). He taught us to pray, “Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:10). He instructed us to “seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well” (Matthew 6:33). When Jesus returns, his name will be “King of Kings and Lord of Lords” (Revelation 19:16).
The “kingdom” is the central theme of Scripture: “I am the Lord, your Holy One, Israel’s Creator, your King” (Isaiah 43:15); “The Lord reigns, he is robed in majesty; the Lord is robed in majesty and is armed with strength” (Psalm 93:1); “The Lord will reign forever and ever” (Exodus 15:18); “The Lord is enthroned as a King forever” (Psalm 29:10); “How awesome is the Lord Most High, the great King over all the earth!” (Psalm 47:2); “Say among the nations, ‘The Lord reigns!'” (Psalm 96:10); “The Lord reigns, let the earth be glad; let the distant shores rejoice” (Psalm 97:1).
There is room for only one king on the throne of your heart. If God is king, you are not. If you are king, he is not. If you are king, the omniscient Ruler of the universe, the God who sees tomorrow better than you can see today, cannot lead you. If he is king, the omnipotent Lord of all creation, the God who measures the heavens with the palm of his hand, can help you. If you are king, the true King cannot bless you. To live a life God can bless, make him your King.
C. S. Lewis said, “There are only two kinds of people in the end: those who say to God, ‘Thy will be done,’ and those to whom God says, in the end, ‘Thy will be done.” Which are you?