Monday, December 2, 2013

The Kingdom of God is not a democracy

If Jesus is Lord, like so many people casually say, that would mean that those who serve Him, truly serve Him.  "Lord" and "King" imply that we are dealing with a monarch, an ultimate ruler who not only expects obedience, but demands obedience as protector of His realm.

But what American has the least concept of living under a true and absolute monarchy?  Isn't that what we fought our revolution to be freed from?  We think of absolute rule as equivalent to tyranny, dictatorships, injustice, virtual slavery.  It's in our blood to reject the thought of giving anyone absolute power over us.

As wonderful as it was, the independence we won in 1776 has had an unexpected by-product over two hundred years: the loss of respect for our true King.  We have become a people that has an innate sense of cynicism towards leadership of any kind, and feel it is our duty to "punish" leaders who do not conform to our wants.  This of course is the bedrock of democracy, a great right that we will defend to the end.  But try to transfer that attitude towards God and you destroy your faith, breaking the bond with the Lord you claim to serve.  The Kingdom of God is not a democracy - it's an absolute monarchy.

A true subject treats his King with unwavering respect.
The wishes of the King are not to be questioned, but obeyed.
Whatever his King requires, he gives, and considers it a privilege.
If an enemy threatens the Kingdom, a true subject considers that enemy his own.
Sacrifice, servanthood and even death for the sake of His King is a high honor.

I know… these statements make you squirm, right?  They smack of injustice, don't they?  But that's because we have never known a GOOD King, who loves us and who is PERFECT!  It makes complete sense to obey God without question, because He is good and perfect.  He is God, and will never fail us or harm us, even when we don't understand what is going on at the moment.  If it feels we are blindly following Him into the dark and over the edge of a cliff, we can trust that He will not only catch us, but lovingly lift us to a higher plane.  But we'll never get there without obedience.

Is there any equivalent to that form of extreme servitude that exists in our modern culture?  Nothing close, which is why (in my opinion) modern Americans have no idea how to live out their claims that "Jesus is Lord."  Church goers have no sense of shame to worship God on a Sunday morning and then indulge in gossip and backstabbing when they get home, as if the wishes of their King are meaningless.  Promises made by their Lord to protect and heal them if they live in submission to Him, are disregarded because they feel that submission is too demeaning.  To add insult to injury, they then criticize their "Lord," accusing Him of not caring because their demands aren't fulfilled to their satisfaction.

Jesus proclaimed, "The Kingdom of Heaven has come!"  The question is, do you want to live in His Kingdom?  Then serve as His subject.  The Kingdom of God is not a democracy.  Get used to it.