Implications of a King

Matt 2:1-12

Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, 2 saying,"Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the East and have come to worship Him."

3 When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him. 4 And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born.

5 So they said to him, "In Bethlehem of Judea, for thus it is written by the prophet: 6 ‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, Are not the least among the rulers of Judah; For out of you shall come a Ruler Who will shepherd My people Israel.'"

7 Then Herod, when he had secretly called the wise men, determined from them what time the star appeared. 8 And he sent them to Bethlehem and said, "Go and search carefully for the young Child, and when you have found Him, bring back word to me, that I may come and worship Him also."

9 When they heard the king, they departed; and behold, the star which they had seen in the East went before them, till it came and stood over where the young Child was. 10 When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceedingly great joy. 11 And when they had come into the house, they saw the young Child with Mary His mother, and fell down and worshiped Him. And when they had opened their treasures, they presented gifts to Him: gold, frankincense, and myrrh.

12 Then, being divinely warned in a dream that they should not return to Herod, they departed for their own country another way. NKJV

In our world today there are few true kings unlike in ages past. All in all that is a good thing. For most times kings oppressed the people and perverted justice and had little concern for their subjects. References to Jesus as king display a much different type of king. In His kingdom all oppression will cease. He will establish His government on righteous principles of equity and justice. And although He is a king of justice as well as mercy, He is no the less a sovereign King. God will bring all those oppose Him to be broken before Him. He will rule with a rod of iron. And before Him every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that He is Lord to the glory of God the Father. But when Jesus came to this earth 2000 years ago as a babe in a manger He was no less king than He is today. What is that we know about kings? And how does Jesus fit these descriptions?

I.         The King is commander in chief of the army.

            A.        He determined who the enemy was.

                        1.         That is not our call.

                        2.         For us to make a truce where He has declared war is tantamount to treason.

                        3.         God does have enemies, for there are some who are opposed to Him.

            B.        He determined the battles to fight.

                        1.         Not everything is equally important in the battle for truth and righteousness.

                        2.         God has laid down some specific limits and conditions in His word.

                        3.         As I heard once, we need to determine which crosses we will die on.

            C.        He determined the commanders and rank of the troops.

                        1.         In this the king alone is sovereign.

                        2.         Self appointed leaders are only leaders for themselves.

                        3.         Each needs a commission directly from the king.

            D.        He determined the strategy.

                        1.         Paul tells us that the weapons of are warfare are not physical but spiritual.

                        2.         2 Cor 10:4 For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, 5 casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, NKJV

                        3.         Our weapons are not the spear or the sword, but prayer, fasting, and the Word of God, which is the sword of the Spirit.

II.        The King is supreme judge.

            A.        There was no higher court.

                        1.         In those true monarchies the king rules supreme and answers to none of his subjects.

                        2.         Anyone of higher rank would be the king.

                        3.         In the determining of right and wrong, God alone has the final say.

                        4.         Regardless of what our earthly government might say, there will be a final review at the bar of heaven.

                        5.         What God has said will stand and none will then object or hinder His will.

            B.        He had the power of life and death without debate.

                        1.         The king had the final say of life and death.

                        2.         If the king determined that you were worthy of death, there was no one who could reverse it.

                        3.         Every life is in the hands of God who will dispose it as He sees fit.

III.       The King was the absolute master of the lives of his subjects.

            A.        In a kingdom all was under the domain of the king.

                        1.         The king determined the standing of anyone whom he would.

                        2.         He could exalt one and demote another.

                        3.         He could raise up the simple and debase the proud.

                                    a.         1 Sam 2:4-8 4 "The bows of the mighty men are broken, And those who stumbled are girded with strength. 5 Those who were full have hired themselves out for bread, And the hungry have ceased to hunger. Even the barren has borne seven, And she who has many children has become feeble. 6 "The LORD kills and makes alive; He brings down to the grave and brings up. 7 The LORD makes poor and makes rich; He brings low and lifts up. 8 He raises the poor from the dust And lifts the beggar from the ash heap, To set them among princes and make them inherit the throne of glory. NKJV

                        4.         He could take a lowly servant and make him a prince among the people.

                                    a.         As God did to David, Solomon and Saul.

                                    b.         As God did in the case of the judges of Israel.

                                    c.         At the same time he could debase the greatest king as He did to Nebuchadnezzar.

            B.        Everyone was at best subjects of the king.

                        1.         We are under the same King.

                        2.         We are either submissive and obedient or we are not.

                        3.         But all would eventually answer to the king.

IV.      The King exercised the power of imposing taxes.

            A.        The king was considered the possessor of all.

            B.        He could exact from his subjects what ever taxes were necessary for the operation of the kingdom.

V.        The King had the right to exact personal service and labor from his subjects.

            A.        At any time the king could enlist from his subjects the service from them which he required for the building of the kingdom.

            B.        The view from the subjects perspective was to be happy to be of service to the king.

VI.      Do we understand the implications of a King?

            A.        Herod understood the implications of a King.

                        1.         Herod understood that their could not be two sovereign kings of the same kingdom.

                        2.         He was not willing to acquiescence to the rule of this King of the Jews.

                        3.         He would do whatever it took to maintain control of his kingdom.

                        4.         Right and wrong and justice had little consequence for Herod.

            B.        The Wise Men understood the implication of a King.

                        1.         They came to honor one greater than themselves.

                        2.         They came to worship One to whom they would gladly give submission even though it might mean their lives.

                        3.         They understood that if Herod knew that they were not going to report back to him that Herod might kill them also.

                        4.         But that was a small price to pay for their king.

            C.        How do our lives reflect the implications of our KING?

                        1.         Loyalty and love.

                                    a.         Our king is the king of love and we must love Him first of all.

                                    b.         We are not those who dread our King.

                                    c.         We love all about Him.

                        2.         Rejoicing to see His kingdom work done, and disappointment at all things that destroy or hinder His kingdom.

                                    a.         As one preacher said, here is where we get to meddling.

                                    b.         But we must never forget that Satan is the god of this age.

                                    c.         And our world presents to us two entirely different kingdoms.

                        3.         Worship, adoration and praise.

                                    a.         Since He alone is worthy of worship and praise.

                                    b.         Since He alone is worthy honor and glory

                        4.         Being subjects of the King and not rebels.

                                    a.         Even Jesus preyed in the garden, not my will but your will be done.

                                    b.         Every Sunday we pray for God’s will to be done on earth as it is in heaven.