As a kid, one of my favorite games was chess. Whether it was playing on the computer, with my cousin or some friends after school; I loved that game. Now the wonderful thing about this game is that whether your chess set is digital, made of wood, marble or whatever, the goal is always the same: protect your king, defeat your opponent’s king.
What a simple concept, yet if you’ve played before you know that its execution is rather complicated. Whether it’s the first move or the last move, the goal always remains the same: your king is your highest priority. Lose your king, you lose everything. This is a fascinating parallel to life in general isn’t it?
All of us have a King. Every action or failure to act, all of this is in view of our king. We act to preserve our king, protect him, serve him. Like pawns sacrificed in a game of chess, so goes our time, talents, money, hearts and even our lives. However, there is a terrible truth: not all kings are worth serving. All kings desire a people. All people serve a king. The question to consider is this: What reward will my king garner me at the end of my service to him? Eternal Life? Eternal Damnation?
Before Jesus was born the angel Gabriel revealed to Mary that Jesus would receive, “…the throne of His father David, and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.” (Luke 1:32b-33 ESV) We find the kingship of Christ in both His birth and at His death (John 19:19). Christ’s kingship was central to His role as the mediator. This is so crucial for us to know as Christ’s disciples.
There is indeed bound within Christianity the fundamental reality that it is impossible to be a Christian and reject Christ’s kingship. Christ’s kingship is different from every other king of Israel and Judah before Him because He is without sin, without fear of men, without idolatry, and now and forever without death. Christ was not simply a king on earth in ancient times. Jesus Christ is King even now! And every human is His subject. His kingship is not dependent on popularity or your permission or your obedience. Christ Jesus is your king. Are you living in such a way to demonstrate that? His righteous rule must break forth into our daily lives by His Holy Spirit through His Word.
When we look to Psalm 2 we read about God’s interactions with those who rebel against God’s king, who is Christ, “Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth set themselves and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD and against His Anointed, saying, ‘Let us burst their bonds apart and cast away their cords from us.” (Psalm 2:1-3 ESV) These plots are “vain” which means they are “empty” or “futile”. Though the initial focus of this Psalm is likely David, He was a type that pointed forward to Jesus Christ. We know this to be true because Scripture interprets this very psalm in that way in Acts 4:25-26 telling us that the rage of the nations culminates in the death of Jesus Christ, the King of Kings. We see in this psalm then the tremendous patience of God. But His patience does come to an end. And then comes the great and fiery Day of the Lord. A day when we shall receive the eternal benefits of the king we serve; for better, or for worse.
Are you living as if Christ is your king? Is He ruling over you and your home? The Heidelberg Catechism tells us what this looks like practically, “[Jesus Christ is] our eternal King who governs us by His Word and Spirit.” (HC Q. 31) When we cling to God’s Word, and seek to bring joy to Him we are being ruled by Christ. When our passion is to take every morsel of our lives and bring it into subjection to His kingship, and authority then we are living as citizens of the Kingdom of God. Beloved, you must live for Christ. The marks of our citizenship, and Christ’s rule is a heart set on living for His glory instead of our own. We must abandon our own wisdom and flee to the cross, where our King gave His all for us so that we might give our all for Him.
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