The Government on His Shoulders; The Kingdom of Jesus Christ
- Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Isaiah, prophesying about the kingdom, wrote of the highway of holiness: "The unclean shall not pass over it; but it shall be for those: the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein" (Isaiah 35:8, KJV). His way is so free from the complexities of life that even fools cannot lose their way.
That kind of simplicity characterizes Messiah's entire government. As the Father of Eternity, He alone comprehends the complexities of time and eternity. He requires no bureaucracy; He shoulders His government by Himself.
No Conflicts-He Is the Prince of Peace
Finally, in the Messiah's kingdom there are no conflicts because He is the Prince of Peace. He offers peace from God (Romans 1:7) to all who are the recipients of His grace. He brings peace with God (Romans 5:1) to those who surrender to Him in faith. He brings the peace of God (Philippians 4:7) to those who walk with Him.
There never really has been peace on earth in the sense we think of it. Wars and rumors of wars have characterized the entire two millennia since the announcement at His birth of peace on earth (Luke 2:14).
That angelic announcement of peace on earth was a two-pronged proclamation. First, it proclaimed that God's peace is available to men and women right now. Read the words of Luke 2:14 carefully: "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased" (emphasis added).
Who are those with whom He is pleased? They are those who have yielded their lives to the authority of His government: "The Lord taketh pleasure in them that fear him, in those that hope in his mercy" (Psalm 147:11, KJV).
Why should we hope in His mercy? Because we are sinners who need His forgiveness (Romans 3:23). We must recognize that fact first of all if we are to place our lives under His government. We must understand that He gave His own sinless, guiltless life on our behalf. He died for our sins to save us from God's righteous wrath (Romans 5:6-9). And we must be willing to turn from our sins and embrace Him by faith, realizing that we can never earn His favor (Ephesians 2:8-9).
But secondly, the angel's announcement of "peace on earth" declared the arrival of the only One who ultimately can bring lasting peace on earth. Jesus Christ will bring lasting peace in the final establishment of His earthly kingdom. As we already mentioned, He will ensure "peace on earth" over the rebellious at heart by wielding a "rod of iron." There will be no coup d'état, no insurrection, not even the slightest threat to disturb the peace He brings to the world.
Isaiah 9:7 continues, "There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace." In other words, His government and peace will keep expanding and improving. The familiar hymn "Like a River Glorious" accurately speaks of peace that is "perfect, yet it floweth fuller every day, perfect, yet it groweth deeper all the way."
How can anything perfect improve? That's one of the mysteries of Messiah's government. It gets better and better, and the perfect peace flows deeper and deeper.
I look forward to the day when He returns to execute the final political solution that will truly bring world peace. His is the greatest government because it's ruled by the greatest ruler-the "Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace." He is the only hope of mankind.
I also hope the government of your life is on His shoulders, that He rules and reigns even now in your heart. Only then will you experience the growing peace that comes only from the Prince of Peace.
© 2008 John MacArthur. All rights reserved.
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