The Church Together: Never-Ending Kingdom, Permanent King

When Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II took the throne in 1952 at the age of twenty-five, Joseph Stalin was in power in the Soviet Union, and Harry Truman was President of the United States. The average cost for a loaf of bread was sixteen cents. As I sit and type today, she’s been on the throne for 68 years and 286 days. That’s what you call a long reign. But she’s not eternal.

As far as empires go, the record goes to the Romans, who held power beginning around 27 BC and ultimately fell in 1453 AD. How’s your math holding up? Rome was en vogue for 1,480 years—a long time by any measure. But not eternal. Not even close.

Kings, kingdoms, empires, nations, presidents—even the longest among them are hopelessly temporary. Born or elected, long-established or fledgling, nations and the men and women who rule them become vapor as fast as a white puff of warm air shoots out of your mouth only to vanish in the cold November wind.

But not Jesus.

Christ our King is no temporary ruler. His kingdom is never-ending; His reign is forever! We mill around on earth, placing our trust, value, security, sometimes even our hope in temporary kingdoms, but the eternal Truths about Christ and His kingdom are not just good theology. Their permanence should change how we live our lives today. Their permanence offers us precious peace in tumultuous times. 

His Authority Is Absolute

The authority of our permanent King is perfect, righteous, just, deserved, kind, strong, unwavering, loving, wise, and protective. Psalm 45:6 says:

Your throne, O God, is forever and ever.
   The scepter of your kingdom is a scepter of uprightness. 

Maybe you’re like me and have never really considered the scepter of a monarch beyond its apparent role as a flashy fashion accessory. In reality, a scepter is a symbol of the ruler’s authority. And what is the scepter of Jesus’ kingdom? Uprightness. 

Three definitions of upright according to Merriam-Webster are “conforming to a high standard of morality or virtue,” “following the accepted rules of moral conduct,” and “rising straight up.”1 Jesus’ authority conforms to the highest standards of morality and virtue. He created the rules of moral conduct. “The Rock, his work is perfect, for all his ways are justice. A God of faithfulness and without iniquity, just and upright is he” (Deut. 32:4, emphasis added).

How should the absolute uprightness of Jesus’ authority change your life today? You can be sure that Jesus is the leader you long for. That His Father is good and does good (Psalm 119:68). You can’t go wrong in taking Him at His Word and responding in obedience. 

His Reign Is for All Time

Here in the United States, we’re in what could be called the “awkward in-between” of presidential terms. The outcome of the election is contested. Will a peaceful transfer of power occur? Have the integrity of our elections been undermined? And consider Russia—one of my sons was incredulous last night upon learning that Vladimir Putin has been president for more than sixteen years (in two separate stints). How long will his presidency go on? 

There are no such questions with the reign of King Jesus. “The LORD is king forever and ever; the nations perish from his land (Psalm 10:16).” Forever and ever. No question. No term limit. And remember, that’s only looking forward; Jesus’ kingship is retroactive to the dawn of creation (John 1:1–5) and as present as Queen Elizabeth sits on the throne today. 

This high and lofty theme of Christ’s eternal kingship needs not sit on your theology bookshelf. The same King from whose hand nations perish (Psalm 10:16) holds you close to His heart. Just as His Kingdom is forever, His grace, mercy, forgiveness, steadfastness, and love reign forever, too. The same Jesus who sustained the pilgrims on treacherous seas continues that sustaining work in your life—as your kids are distance learning, as you feel isolated and alone, as you’re struggling with income loss, wondering how you’ll pay the rent let alone buy Christmas presents. His reign is for all time—2020 included.

His Territory Is Endless

Google tells me that the “observable Universe” is about 93 billion light years in diameter:

  1. I don’t even know what that means. It is so huge that the number means absolutely nothing to me.
  2. That’s just the “observable universe,” a term which in itself admits a vast unknown, uncharted expanse. Translated into layman’s terms? God over Google. God over all.

Of course this is not new information. The Lord himself reminded Job:

“Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth?
   Tell me, if you have understanding.
Who determined its measurements—surely you know!
   Or who stretched the line upon it?
On what were its bases sunk,
   or who laid its cornerstone,
when the morning stars sang together
   and all the sons of God shouted for joy?

"Or who shut in the sea with doors
   when it burst out from the womb,
when I made clouds its garment
   and thick darkness its swaddling band,
and prescribed limits for it
   and set bars and doors,
and said, ‘Thus far shall you come, and no farther,
   and here shall your proud waves be stayed’?” (Job: 38:4–11)

Jesus reigns over all that He made; every millimeter of the universe is observable to Him. It’s visible, within His reach, and in His care. 

But will living in the vastness of Christ’s kingdom change my life today? I’m reminded of the limits of my status as a United States citizen. Within the boundaries of my country, it offers me a certain amount of protection, privilege, and peace. But the moment I step onto foreign soil, all bets are off. Being a U.S. citizen might come with a little clout, but ultimately I’m at the mercy of the laws and leaders of the country I’m visiting. But it’s not so with our heavenly citizenship. Whatever comes our way, whatever hardships or terrors befall us, whether we’re tucked into our beds at night or serving the Lord in far flung corners, we have no fear of being outside of His domain. Our Jesus, He’s King everywhere. 

Crown Him

Some days the world seems frightfully large. We send our children out into evil days, and we worry they’ll be swallowed up in the vastness and constant motion of it all. Other days, my world seems very, very small. These compact, homebound days of COVID remind us that we hardly have control of the four walls closing in around us much less anything beyond them. 

But outside, over every inch of this planet, over every moment in time, over every heavenly and earthly authority, there is One who sees. Who knows. Who holds those who love Him in His work-worthy, protective, kind and caring hands. 

Believe it or not, the precious hymn “Crown Him with Many Crowns” actually has twelve verses. (No, that’s not a typo. Twelve!) This one, though infrequently sung, is a beautiful song in praise of the never-ending kingdom of our perfect permanent King. May its text be our hearts’ prayer today:

Crown him the Lord of years!
   The Potentate of time,
Creator of the rolling spheres,
   Ineffably sublime!
Glassed in a sea of light,
   Where everlasting waves
Reflect his throne, the Infinite!
   Who lives, and loves and saves.

Amen.

1“Upright Synonyms, Upright Antonyms,” Merriam-Webster (Merriam-Webster), accessed November 24, 2020, https://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/upright.

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About the Author

Laura Elliott

Laura Elliott

Born and raised in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, Laura Elliott now serves the Lord alongside her husband, Michael, five sons, and one daughter in Minnesota’s Twin Cities. Her passions include words, music, politics, cooking, and encouraging women to seek the God of Scripture in every season of life. Laura is a writer and vocalist, an occasional speaker, and the managing editor for Revive Our Hearts. In addition to the True Woman blog, Laura occasionally writes at shimmersome.com.

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