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November 5, 2012 / brockbruce

Kings and Kingdoms (sermon notes 11.4.2012)

Pray then like this:
“Our Father in heaven,

hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
(Matthew 6:9-10 ESV)
There are currently 2 Kingdoms.
The Kingdoms of this World and the Kingdom of God.
God’s plan has always been for one Kingdom.
That is why He chose a to establish the nation of Israel and untimely bring every nation under the KINGDOM of JESUS.
Let’s look at this Israel and how they got a king.
(Deuteronomy 17:14-20 ESV) [Laws Concerning Israel’s Kings]

     [14] “When you come to the land that the LORD your God is giving you, and you possess it and dwell in it and then say, ‘I will set a king over me, like all the nations that are around me,’ [15] you may indeed set a king over you whom the LORD your God will choose. One from among your brothers you shall set as king over you. You may not put a foreigner over you, who is not your brother.
[16] Only he must not acquire many horses for himself or cause the people to return to Egypt in order to acquire many horses, since the LORD has said to you, ‘You shall never return that way again.’ [17] And he shall not acquire many wives for himself, lest his heart turn away, nor shall he acquire for himself excessive silver and gold.
God is making allowance for a future king.
What God is telling Moses is that human Kings, leaders, have a tendency because of the mixture of sin nature, power and pride to govern in a way that makes things better for himself and not for the good of the governed.
There is a tendency to acquire horses and women and silver and gold.
There is a tendency for kings and governments to become corrupt.
To become prideful and arrogant. For leaders to fail sexually. To desire riches and glory and wealth above the betterment of society and those they lead.
They will even use social programs and moral agenda’s to keep themselves in power because they are power-hungry.
     [DEAUT 17:18] “And when he sits on the throne of his kingdom, he shall write for himself in a book a copy of this law, approved by the Levitical priests. [19] And it shall be with him, and he shall read in it all the days of his life, that he may learn to fear the LORD his God by keeping all the words of this law and these statutes, and doing them, [20] that his heart may not be lifted up above his brothers, and that he may not turn aside from the commandment, either to the right hand or to the left, so that he may continue long in his kingdom, he and his children, in Israel.
God tells Moses that the only remedy for a wicked king is to have the Law of God rule his heart.
The only thing that allows a king or president to rule and govern rightly is a fear of the LORD and an obedience to the precepts and teaching of God.
When a leader governs rightly it is not only good for him it is good for his society.
Godly governing is good for the governed and the governor. 
What is Godly Governing?
     Look after the weakest of it’s people (the unborn, the poor, the immigrant)
     Is just. Rewards right behavior and punishes bad behavior (from greed to rape)
     Allows for a free society (allows for personal freedom so long as it doesn’t harm society as a whole, from defending biblical marriage to drug laws)
I think that Christian’s are allowed to disagree on government policies and how best to for governments to govern all of its citizens. But I don’t think is room for Christian’s to disagree over what is godly.
And I especially don’t think Christians should let their political affiliations dictate how they live and interact in the worldly Kingdom because our first allegiance is to another Kingdom.
Christian’s should always be about the other Kingdom.
We should be praying THY KINGDOM COME. Instead of desiring the best kingdom we can vote into office, we should desire the Best Kingdom, His Kingdom. Jesus, bring Your Kingdom. 
But until His Kingdom comes, we are to live as citizen’s of His kingdom in a captive land that has afforded us, because of God’s common grace, some rights as a citizen of this land.
Like Paul, when he appealed to Roman law, we must understand that we are dual-citizens. And our Heavenly citizenship is eternal and of most importance, while this citizenship is fleeting but still important.
WELL WHAT GOD SAID WHOULD HAPPEN, THAT ISRAEL WOULD CRY OUT FOR A KING, HAPPENS
(1 Samuel 8 ESV) [Israel Demands a King]
     [8:1] When Samuel became old, he made his sons judges over Israel. [2] The name of his firstborn son was Joel, and the name of his second, Abijah; they were judges in Beersheba. [3] Yet his sons did not walk in his ways but turned aside after gain. They took bribes and perverted justice.
     [4] Then all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah [5] and said to him, “Behold, you are old and your sons do not walk in your ways. Now appoint for us a king to judge us like all the nations.” [6] But the thing displeased Samuel when they said, “Give us a king to judge us.” And Samuel prayed to the LORD. [7] And the LORD said to Samuel, “Obey the voice of the people in all that they say to you, for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected me from being king over them. [8] According to all the deeds that they have done, from the day I brought them up out of Egypt even to this day, forsaking me and serving other gods, so they are also doing to you. [9] Now then, obey their voice; only you shall solemnly warn them and show them the ways of the king who shall reign over them.”
[Samuel’s Warning Against Kings]
     [10] So Samuel told all the words of the LORD to the people who were asking for a king from him. [11] He said, “These will be the ways of the king who will reign over you: he will take your sons and appoint them to his chariots and to be his horsemen and to run before his chariots. [12] And he will appoint for himself commanders of thousands and commanders of fifties, and some to plow his ground and to reap his harvest, and to make his implements of war and the equipment of his chariots. [13] He will take your daughters to be perfumers and cooks and bakers. [14] He will take the best of your fields and vineyards and olive orchards and give them to his servants. [15] He will take the tenth of your grain and of your vineyards and give it to his officers and to his servants. [16] He will take your male servants and female servants and the best of your young men and your donkeys, and put them to his work. [17] He will take the tenth of your flocks, and you shall be his slaves. [18] And in that day you will cry out because of your king, whom you have chosen for yourselves, but the LORD will not answer you in that day.”
[The Lord Grants Israel’s Request]
     [19] But the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel. And they said, “No! But there shall be a king over us, [20] that we also may be like all the nations, and that our king may judge us and go out before us and fight our battles.” [21] And when Samuel had heard all the words of the people, he repeated them in the ears of the LORD. [22] And the LORD said to Samuel, “Obey their voice and make them a king.” Samuel then said to the men of Israel, “Go every man to his city.”
GOD SEE’S ISRAEL’S DESIRE FOR A HUMAN KING AS A REJECTION OF HIMSELF AS KING
 [7] And the LORD said to Samuel, “Obey the voice of the people in all that they say to you, for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected me from being king over them.
What the people were really saying was that they wanted to be like the other nations.
They wanted a figurehead. Someone they could point to as their king.
It wasn’t that they just wanted a King, they were wanting a different KING.
They were choosing to be like the other nations.
They were in effect voting God out of office. 
They wanted to place their trust in a man to protect them during war instead of the KING who had brought them into the promised land.
They wanted to trust a man to provide for them during bad economic times and when famines would come and it would be a struggle to put food on the table instead of the KING who had provided manna in the desert. 
The wanted to hope in a man to lead them spiritually and give them the idols they desired instead of the KING who had proved himself more powerful than the gods of their neighbors. 
They wanted to hope in a man who they could trust with their eyes instead of the KING their could trust with their hearts. 
The wanted to hope in a man that could enslave them by his decree instead of the KING that had set them free from their bondage. 
The wanted to put their hope in a man that promised them everything they wanted to hear instead of the KING who would give them everything they needed! 
We are as bad as the Israelites. 
We want to get our provision for a man. 
We look to an election to fix wants wrong with our country. 
When what is truly broken in our country are the hearts of sinful men.
And the only thing that can truly fix what is broken is the true KING! Yes God has established governments.
And we should be good citizens of our governments. But we far to easily get entangled in party politics when we should be more concerned about the KINGDOM that is coming.
We look to men to fix what only God can fix.
We look to policy instead of looking to Jesus.
We look to the little letter beside a name instead of looking to the Cross.
We look to electing a man instead of advancing the true KINGDOM.
Jesus said “My kingdom is not of this world”, and yet we keep trying to build it through elections instead of bring the gospel to people.
It’s a lot easier to vote in someone pro-life than to do the hard work of investing in the live’s of at risk young women.
It’s a lot easier to vote in somebody who is pro-biblical marriage than to spend time with homosexuals and love them to Jesus.
It’s a lot easier to vote in somebody who is going to build a fence than to welcome the immigrant and teach them how to become a citizen. Talk about the a gospel picture.
It’s a lot easier to vilify the president than to pray for him.
It’s a lot easier to let the government care for the poor than it is to be the church and look after the orphan and the widow.
It’s a lot easier to vote to let the somebody do what we aren’t willing to do.
It’s a lot easier to vote for a human king than to be the people God has called us to be.
We shirk our responsibility.
We leave it up to governments and politicians and leaders.
We are to eager to let the government replace the church.
We are far too willing to surrender the KINGDOM to a political movement. 
Are the only reasons we vote to clear our conscience? Surely not.
Many of us do vote because we are trying to be good citizens.
Should we be involved, sure. Definitely.
We should do what is in our God given power to promote a Godly government, a government that protects the weak, governess justly, and promotes freedom.
But we shouldn’t place our hope in a government governed by men and women.
God still wants to be our KING. No allegiance higher than our allegiance to our KING.
I’m reminded of the song King David wrote, the greatest king in Israel’s history, he wrote, 
(Psalm 20:6-8 ESV)
[6] Now I know that the LORD saves his anointed;
          he will answer him from his holy heaven
          with the saving might of his right hand.
     [7] Some trust in chariots and some in horses,
          but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.
     [8] They collapse and fall,
          but we rise and stand upright.
We mustn’t trust in the power systems of this world.
They can be used by God. They can by used for good. But we must trust in the LORD our God. We must return to the KING.
David, the greatest king of Israel, looked for a time when God himself would rule again as KING.
(Psalm 145:1 ESV) [1] I will extol you, my God and King,
          and bless your name forever and ever.
[13] Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,

          and your dominion endures throughout all generations.
     [The LORD is faithful in all his words
          and kind in all his works.]
MY GOD AND MY KING, as we looked last week, JESUS is GOD and JESUS is the PROMISED KING!
JESUS EVEN ALLOWED A CORONATION PARTY!
HOSANNA, HE IS OUR KING
(Luke 19:35-40 ESV)[35] And they brought it to Jesus, and throwing their cloaks on the colt, they set Jesus on it. [36] And as he rode along, they spread their cloaks on the road. [37] As he was drawing near—already on the way down the Mount of Olives—the whole multitude of his disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works that they had seen, [38] saying, “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” [39] And some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples.” [40] He answered, “I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out.”
The oppressed, the hurting, the broken, the desperate, the rich, the affluent, the educated, the commoner, the official, everyone in Israel longed for a King. Not just any king, But the PROMISED KING, THE CHOSEN KING, THE ANOINTED KING, THE KING OF KINGS, THE KING DAVID PROPHESIED ABOUT, THE KING THAT WOULD RULE JUSTLY AND RIGHTLY AND DELIVER HIS PEOPLE. The people recognized Jesus as that KING. AND JESUS SAID, IF THEY DON”T RECOGNIZE ME AS KING, CREATION WILL RISE UP AND TESTIFY OF MY KINGDOM.
The Psalms again speak of the everlasting king who would reign in righteousness
(Psalm 45:6-7 ESV)
[6] Your throne, O God, is forever and ever.
          The scepter of your kingdom is a scepter of uprightness;
          [7] you have loved righteousness and hated wickedness.
     Therefore God, your God, has anointed you
          with the oil of gladness beyond your companions;
This everlasting KING will ultimately return to set up his Kingdom and destroy the wicked kingdoms of the world, 
(Revelation 17:14 ESV) [14] 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.”
KING JESUS will also destroy all the spiritual rulers that have influenced this world system, namely the beast and the false prophet. Kings and kingdoms will all pass away. Listen,
(Revelation 19:11-21 ESV)[The Rider on a White Horse]
     [11] Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. [12] His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself. [13] He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God. [14] And the armies of heaven, arrayed in fine linen, white and pure, were following him on white horses. [15] From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty. [16] On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords…
     [19] And I saw the beast and the kings of the earth with their armies gathered to make war against him who was sitting on the horse and against his army. [20] And the beast was captured, and with it the false prophet who in its presence had done the signs by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped its image. These two were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with sulfur. [21] And the rest were slain by the sword that came from the mouth of him who was sitting on the horse, and all the birds were gorged with their flesh.
We see all this imagery, but the point is this, one day KING JESUS will return and it will be like it was always destined to be, HE WILL BE OUR GOD AND WE WILL BE HIS PEOPLE. JESUS, THE ETERNAL KING, WILL BE OUR KING. AND WE WILL NOT REJECT HIM, BUT WILL JOIN WITH THE ANGELS IN WORSHIP TO OUR GREAT KING!
Until then we recognize that God set up governments (Romans 13) and unless there is direct conflict between the government and GOD we obey government. Even if we don’t like the way the government is run. Even if it is wicked.

Peter, while under persecution from Nero and eventually martyred by him, says to honor the emperor (1 Peter 2:17).
Jesus (Matthew 22:21) when pressed about government authority to require tax, said give to Caesar what is Caesar’s. Even though the Roman government was oppressive towards the Jews. SO just because we may not like our leaders and governors, we aren’t free, under GOD, to just ignore them, dishonor them or rebel against them.
We have the freedom to choose our government, use it to promote a godly government because that makes for a better society. And always be about advancing the Kingdom, because that points people to King Jesus. We can and must advance the Kingdom, godly government or not, no mater who wins an election. Because Kings and kingdoms will all pass away, but there’s something about that Name!
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