(Post by: Lilly Hobbs) Blogmas Day Thirteen
In 2021, I was convicted that I had never read through the whole Bible before. The Lord had been previously working on my heart in this area, and I knew I needed to make a commitment to being in the Word on a daily basis. Fast forward to present day, I am on day 345 of my Bible in 365 reading plan.
In no way do I share this with you to boast. Instead, the reason I share is because it has been one of the best experiences I have ever had, and I want to encourage you to make that commitment in 2023 if you haven’t read through the Bible before!
One of the things my eyes were quickly opened to as I started reading through the Old Testament was the great desire the Israelites had to rule over themselves. Sure, they were selfish, turned away from God countless times, and worshiped false idols whenever they had the chance, but this one prominent desire is a key theme that runs all throughout their story.
In 1 Samuel 8, we read that Israel demands a king. Why would they demand such a thing? God had been ruling over them as King and had proved His extravagant love and faithfulness to them time and time again. Their reason: “Then we’ll be like all the other nations” (1 Samuel 8:20).
Though they had Samuel, a wise prophet to judge them, and immediate correspondence with Heaven and God Himself, they were not content. Matthew Henry states, “A poor prophet in a mantle, though conversant in the visions of the Almighty, looked mean in the eyes of those who judged by outward appearance; but a king in a purple robe, with his guards and officers of state, would look great: and such a one they must have. They knew it was in vain to court Samuel to take upon him the title and dignity of a king, but he must appoint them one. They do not say, “Give us a king that is wise and good, and will judge better than thy sons do,” but, “Give us a king,” anybody that will but make a figure. Thus foolishly did they forsake their own mercies, and, under pretense of advancing the dignity of their nation to that of their neighbors, did really thrust themselves down from their own excellency, and profane their crown by casting it to the ground.”
Here’s the hard truth… This is what the American Church is saying today. We have the same desire to rule over ourselves and imitate the world around us. We are selfish, have turned away from God countless times, and worshiped false idols whenever we have had the chance. Just like He did with the Israelites, God will say to us, you get what you ask for. He will remove His mighty hand from us and allow us to suffer in our rebellion against His perfect plan.
This one prominent desire is a key theme that runs all throughout our story.
Yet, there is only one thing the Lord cares about clearing up, and that is the question of Kingship.
Matthew 27:11-14 says, “Meanwhile Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor asked him, “Are you the king of the Jews?”
“You have said so,” Jesus replied.
When he was accused by the chief priests and the elders, he gave no answer. Then Pilate asked him, “Don’t you hear the testimony they are bringing against you?” But Jesus made no reply, not even to a single charge—to the great amazement of the governor.”
What question did Jesus answer?
C. S. Lewis once said, “Jesus was either a Liar, a Lunatic, or Lord.” What is He to you this Christmas?
You see, the Kingship question is all that matters. He is the King, the only King.
O come all you despairing
There’s rest and comfort here under the star
Love fulfilled the promise
Messiah take the crown here in my heart
I’ll drop everything and run to you
Spend my life declaring this good news
Prince of Peace rule over me
Prince of Peace reign
Celtic Worship – Prince of Peace
I also found reading through the old testament to be so interesting! Plus, the fact that Jesus only responded to that one question is such a small detail I would have overlooked. However, I see why that question is such an important one that we ask ourselves. Great post!
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