1 Chronicles 29: 23-25. Then Solomon sat on the throne of the Lord as king in place of David his father. And he prospered, and all Israel obeyed him. 24 All the leaders and the mighty men, and also all the sons of King David, pledged their allegiance to King Solomon. 25 And the Lord made Solomon very great in the sight of all Israel and bestowed on him such royal majesty as had not been on any king before him in Israel.
Advent means arrival. The idea is that we are waiting for the arrival of someone or something. Apocalypse means “revelation” or arrival or breaking through. The Bible makes it clear that we are waiting for the arrival of a king. A hero who will crush the enemy of death and bring life to all of humanity.
In the middle of the first Advent, God promised David that his son would be a king forever. David’s son Solomon sat on a throne of majesty as had not been on any king before him. The Kings of Judah, David’s son and grandson and great grandsons, were “sons of God.” God promised to father them. At the coronation of the king, psalms would be sung declaring the king to be the son of God. These words were read whenever a son of David was crowned:
Psalm 2:7-9. 7 I will tell of the decree:
The Lord said to me, “You are my Son;
today I have begotten you.
8 Ask of me, and I will make the nations your heritage,
and the ends of the earth your possession.
9 You shall break them with a rod of iron
and dash them in pieces like a potter’s vessel.”
Kings represented the people. One of the patterns you see in the Old Testament is that if the King was evil the people would follow right along. But if the King feared God and was righteous, the people would usually return to God too. The people found their identity in the king. They were united to their king as their representative head. They found their life in his life.
As modern Americans, it seems like we have a love hate relationship with kings. We love royal weddings, and movies like The Lion King and The Return of the King captured our hearts. The Crown is one of my favorite shows on Netflix. But do I want a king? Nope. It’s a source of pride for us Americans that we never had a king except Elvis.
But rather than resist a king, Advent is all about embracing a king. King Jesus.
My brother. My Captain. My King.
Jesus is meant to not only be your Savior, but also your Lord. Lord is what Jesus is most often called in the New Testament (along with Christ or Messiah). Paul tells us that only by the Holy Spirit can someone call Jesus “Lord” – King of the universe, the ruling deity.
1 Corinthians 12:3. Therefore I want you to understand that no one speaking in the Spirit of God ever says “Jesus is accursed!” and no one can say “Jesus is Lord” except in the Holy Spirit.
Yes, the baby who was born in a manger in a little town among dirty animals and shepherds is the King of Kings. Ruler of the cosmos. The man who died the death of a peasant criminal is the Adonai. The One under whom all things in the universe are falling into place.
The Apocalyptic Advent for the Jews was a waiting for a king to be revealed. Jesus was their king. But not only theirs, the king of the whole world. Our Advent today is a waiting for the return of the king. The ruler of our hearts. Our Savior who is also our Master. He will return. He will rule fully and finally over the whole earth, while today he rules our hearts.
“To live is Christ” is to acknowledge Christ the king. If you cannot live with Jesus as your master, then are you in Christ? Do you trust him? By his resurrection Jesus was made both Lord and Christ (Acts 2:36). Your co-death and resurrection with Christ makes him your eternal king. Just as with Solomon, all will pledge their allegiance to him. More than Solomon, the Father will make Jesus very great in the sight of all the earth and bestow on him such royal majesty as had not been on any king before him in the earth.
Do you struggle to accept the Lordship of Christ? Is Advent for you a longing for the return of the King? How does your union with Christ allow you to embrace the Lordship of Christ?
The King sings Christmas