Partners in Christian Mission

August/September 2020

August/September 2020

Kings - The Servant Leaders

theological reflection:

Liam Conway is studying a Masters of Divinity by distance through Malyon College, Queensland. The two most impactful units so far are Old Testament Overview and a Catechisis unit. In studying these, the question of what it meant for Jesus to hold these offices of Prophet, Priest and King; and for our adoption to God to extend those offices to the Church. This has led to asking about the lengths of Adoption, and how God sees us if we are his children.

Christ exists in three offices: Prophet, Priest, and King. As Co-heirs and benefactors of Christ's actions I wonder, to what extent do these offices pass on to us? What are the offices to start with? And how can knowing about the offices improve our knowledge of ourselves, and Christ? This article looks the Kings, God's Servant Leaders.

READ Part One: Prophets - the Haunted Advocates >>> | Part Two: Priests - the Interceding Nation >>>

Who were the Kings?

KINGS - the seravant leadersThe human office of kings was unnatural to Israel when the people asked for it in 1 Samuel 8.

Israel was intended to be a nation where their king was YHWH and YHWH alone. Israel had leaders, but their office was temporary, but a King was to be a person who stood between them and the leadership of God.

The first King was Saul, who was later succeeded by David, whose line was that of the nation of Judah. When Solomon, son of David, died a succession crisis took place and the tribes were divided between the Northern Kingdom of Israel and the Southern Kingdom of Judah (1 Kings 11-12).

What did the Kings do?

The Kings wielded ultimate worldly authority over the subjects of their respective kingdoms, maintaining taxes, an army, and diplomatic power. They were also the spiritual barometer of their respective kingdoms. The Books of Kings likens many of the reigns of the Kings to either David, the righteous King of Israel, or Jeroboam, the wicked king of Judah.

They guided the people and were the role model of proper worship to God. A good king was one that pointed Israel back to God and worshipped in their heart and at the temple, like David and Hezekiah.

How does Jesus become our King?

"1693 Baptist Catechism, Q29: 'Christ executes the Office of a king in subduing us to himself in ruling and defending us, and in restraining and conquering all his and our Enemies'."

From the smallest point to the largest, Jesus is of a human royal lineage.

Jesus' position as our King comes from three places:

  • His Godly line, as king and ruler of creation;
  • His line of David
  • God's Covenant with David (2 Samuel 7)

From the smallest point to the largest, Jesus is of a human royal lineage.

There are many of those in the world, and to be honest, it's not particularly special. What is special is that it is the royal lineage of God's covenant People, the Israelites. And this royal lineage was given a covenant to establish an unending kingship in 2 Samuel 7. Jesus is the King of the Jews as he fulfils that covenant, and is of the inherited line of David.

Not only that, but as Emmanuel, God with us, Jesus is the head of all creation fully incarnate on the earth. He has the job description of being God, the sustainer, creator, and final authority of all the universe.

Jesus is our King

What does this mean for us?

Jesus is established as King of all states and nations of the world and gathers those who are faithful to that idea into a new nation. As a King he gathers his nation, the Church, together and seeks to unify them towards the end goal of bringing the Kingdom of Heaven to earth.

Kings - the servant leadersAs the spiritual barometer for the Kingdom, Jesus is consistently pointing towards the standards and principles of God. He is our guidepost, our way marker, and guide. As Jesus is fully realised as King over all creation, he calls his nation to follow him and to seek God.

In our baptism we accept him as our Leader, following his pattern, symbolising death and resurrection in the ritual. In taking communion, we affiliate ourselves and ally ourselves to the work of this Kingdom, as citizens of this nation. This means that unity is of utmost importance, because to create civil war in a Kingdom of peace is a way for our enemy to slip in and cause disaster.

This means that upholding, encouraging and working through disagreements is of utmost importance within the Church. Finding someone difficult to get along with is reasonable, but badmouthing them, pitting ourselves against them, and not seeking either reconciliation or a polite distance, is to cause damage to the Nation of God.

The world judges us and discredits the Gospel based on our distance from each other and our distrust of other churches, but whilst we were enemies Christ died for us.

What would happen in our Family, in our Church, in our State and nation if we were to seek our enemies and sacrifice for their well-being?

Blessings, and thank you for reading.

Liam Conway
Ministry Apprentice, Hobart Baptist Church

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