A GOOD KING HAS LOYAL FOLLOWERS
“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.”
Isaiah 9:6-7 ESV
I’m not your typical woman in that I really love action movies. I was re-watching a familiar favorite, The Lord of the Rings, and something struck me about it this time, the beautiful loyalty of the men following their kings, even to the point of death during seemingly hopeless battles. It got me thinking why this trait is so inspirational and stirs something within us. We are not familiar with kings and long-term loyalty here in our country. We have leaders that are only temporary, so we don’t get invested in them and certainly don’t think of sacrificing for them. In the movies or in true stories of heroes the common theme is that these men or women inspired loyalty by their own sacrifices and the good actions done on behalf of others.
King David had a special bond with Jonathan. Jonathan gave up his own right to the throne and faced the wrath of his father for the sake of the Lord and for David. When David was in exile, he had 30 mighty men that risked their lives over and over again doing mighty feats to further the cause of David and protect him. It is such a rare thing to see someone sacrifice their own rights, safety, time, possessions, and even their lives for another that we must acknowledge it as unique and special.
I desire to be totally devoted and loyal to my King, Jesus Christ. And it’s exciting to share how the Lord will produce that in me and in you. Since we are unfamiliar with loyalty to kings, it’s helpful to see what a good king looks like and how our King Jesus meets and exceeds those standards. As we see how wonderful He truly is, loyalty and devotion is produced, just as it is in the physical realm.
“He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son.” Colossians 1:13
A good king protects His people and saves them from enemies. He steps in and does for them what they cannot do on their own. Isn’t that why we look to our leaders in government today? We know we need help from one that has more authority, power and resources than we have on our own. Jesus has battled the ultimate enemy for us, sin and death and given us victory for all eternity.
t is an abomination to kings to do evil, for the throne is established by righteousness. Proverbs 16:12
When leaders or kings do evil, we cry out against it, because that is not their purpose, to exploit us, but they are placed in power to lead and care for us. We want to see a moral and fair system in our land that is free from corruption and gives justice in righteousness. And the Lord Jesus Christ will be the perfect judge. He shall punish the wicked and reward righteousness. There will be no deception or bribery or unfairness in His kingdom.
And the Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him, the Spirit of wisdom and understanding, the Spirit of counsel and might, the Spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord. And his delight shall be in the fear of the Lord. He shall not judge by what his eyes see, or decide disputes by what his ears hear, but with righteousness he shall judge the poor, and decide with equity for the meek of the earth; and he shall strike the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips he shall kill the wicked. Righteousness shall be the belt of his waist, and faithfulness the belt of his loins. Isaiah 11:2-5
“I the Lord search the heart and test the mind, to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his deeds.” Jeremiah 17:10
Jesus will search all our hearts. He will reveal the hidden thoughts, words spoken in secret and motivations of our hearts. His wisdom will supersede any judge we face on earth for He will know the hearts and judge righteously. We will say with the angels, "You are righteous, O Lord."
“The heart of good leadership is sacrifice.” – John Maxwell
That’s what inspires us the most in these movies or stories of heroes, they sacrificed something for the sake and benefit of another. And we want to follow those who have that heart. For we feel safe in submitting to their leadership, because selfishness is no longer the priority to them. When we feel cared for and not exploited, we then willingly choose to give. We give of our time, our love, our money and possessions, our devotion, even our very lives.
“For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die—but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:7-8
The Lord Jesus Christ didn’t just promise to die for us and go into the battlefield of life with us. He did actually die. It’s not a theory that we hope will come true. It’s already done and proven. And He did it for us, not because we did so many good things for Him, but because He loved and chose us. He lived this life and fulfilled the Father’s will despite all the suffering He endured, the shame, the accusations and injustice against Him. And then He proved He was God by rising from the dead. We don't have a dead King, but an eternal, living one.
"For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin." Hebrews 4:15
Jesus Christ is the epitome of what an amazing leader and King is supposed to look like. This is what we get to look forward to, a King who doesn’t ask us to do anything He has not already done or willing to do with us by His Spirit here on earth. Doesn’t that inspire devotion and loyalty? We have the opportunity to showcase our devotion and loyalty to our King every time we get to step into the lives of those around us. It doesn’t have to be some great feat, though some may be called to do so. We too will be able to demonstrate our devotion by the faithful loyalty to follow our King each day and do all that He commands. He is the good King we have been searching and waiting to see on this earth and we will see Him take His throne one day. We all want someone worthy to follow. Jesus has met that need within us with Himself. I'm excited to see the Lord in this light as the perfect one who is worthy of all my devotion and obedience. He will never betray or exploit me. He will only bless and even now is making plans to bless and care for me for all eternity. Because of how good Jesus Christ is, devotion and sacrifice are not a burden, but a privilege and honor.
They will make war on the Lamb, and the Lamb will conquer them, for he is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those with him are called and chosen and faithful.” Revelation 17:14