I have a general distrust of government and politicians. My apologies to those elected officials who do a good job; there are some. For the most part, politicians promise big but don’t deliver. Too much government intrudes on our lives and takes away our freedom rather than protecting it. Our founding fathers understood this and created a system of checks and balances so that our country would not be held hostage to a tyrant. They lived under a monarchy before establishing this great country so they understood how dangerous a king can be.
Most of you seem to feel the same way, to a certain extent. Congress’ approval rating has been in the teens and twenties for years; at least for the last two administrations. The last two presidents have had approval ratings hovering around 50%; sometimes lower, sometimes higher but not much. Americans distrust authority and I think that’s part of what has made our country great.
This attitude, though, makes it hard for me to be moved by the title “King of kings” as applied to Jesus. The word king, to me, evokes negative images. Jesus as a King doesn’t mean as much to me as Redeemer, Messiah, Emmanuel, or Alpha and Omega but this shouldn’t be so.
There are several reasons why having Jesus as our King should be moving.
First, Jesus is perfectly wise. He understands us in a way no earthly leader can. Jesus’ perspective is much larger than ours because He sees all things and understands the world in a way we never will. His decisions can be based on the truth rather than someone’s inadequate understanding. We can trust Him as our King because He knows everything and none of us do.
We can also accept Him as our King because He is perfectly good. Jesus is not selfish nor does He seek power. Jesus left the perfection of heaven to live a very difficult life here and, ultimately, to die so that we could be forgiven. No politician has ever done that for us. Jesus has our best interests at heart. He loves us and would never do anything that would harm us. He disciplines us, yes, and that can be painful as is all discipline. Our Savior would never do anything to us that would cause pain because He is perfectly good. We can trust Him.
Finally, we can trust Him because He is all powerful. He set the sun, moon, and stars in place. That power is at work for us in this world. Life is still hard and there are tragedies and challenges but we know that Jesus has the power to help us overcome our biggest tormentors, sin and death. There is no one with more authority or power than Jesus and we can trust Him.
A king? Not if he’s an Earthly king who will work for his best interests instead of ours. Jesus as king of kings? I can relate to that. He was born in a manger rather than a palace. He knows what it’s like to be one of us and so we can put our complete faith in Him as our ruler.
Rob Morton is minister of First Christian Church Middlesboro. Contact him at [email protected]