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Throughout history, all kings, emperors, czars, prime ministers, presidents, dictators, and tribal leaders—call them what you will—have one thing in common. All the world and societal changes wrought during their tenures, some mediocre, some good, but many incalculably evil, were accomplished by virtue of the exercise of earthly rule.

Such power has always been a deadly intoxicant for leaders. Have you ever inhabited that place, even a little? It is a heady experience, isn’t it? You speak. People act. Perhaps, then, you have experienced how the need for continuing growth of your power can be easily justified. Pride and sin come creeping, but the lust for power seems so right, so infatuating, that we just think it’s the right way to go.

However, much too often, we have not gone the right way. Sovereign rule has driven men and women mad. Kings have killed their own children. Political leaders have murdered those they perceived as threats. They have initiated the invasion of tribes and nations, and millions of people have died.

Earthly power. That is what accomplishes all this. Physical dominance exercised in one way or another over people.

But let’s talk about spiritual power, not worldly. That power is so remarkable that the human mind cannot conceive it. We simply cannot imagine what kind of force would be required to create everything in the universe from nothing in an instant. The Lord didn’t use a gigantic particle accelerator or fantastic tools or machines. No physical agency at all. He used spiritual power alone.

This amazingly potent God in the flesh, Jesus, is called the King of Kings. This means He will rule over all the other kings. How did He attain this position? What secular power did He use? None whatsoever. He accomplished it by His death, resurrection, and exaltation to the throne of heaven. In detail, how was that done? Could we examine it, like we can examine  the history of the rise to power of a king? No. We have no clue; no more clue than we know how God created the universe and life itself.

Everything Jesus accomplished on earth—the multiple healings, stilling the storm, walking on water, changing water into wine, feeding thousands of people with a few fish and loaves of bread, raising the dead, and casting out demons was not accomplished by physical means but by spiritual power. The only exception is when He, using a “whip of cords” chased the money changers and those who sold pigeons out of the Temple which was to be “a house of prayer for all nations” not a “den of robbers” (John 2:15, Mark 11:17).

It is by spiritual power He is going to reign. It has been proclaimed. He will accomplish this not through political intrigue or acts of an earthly government. His rulership over all is just the way it will be. Perhaps you don’t care for this reality. You may think Him cruel. Barbarous. But how would you challenge this fact? To whom would you appeal? Protest and demonstrate? Stage a rebellion?

Well, go right ahead. But your efforts will gain nothing. Nichts. Nada. The truth that Jesus is above all rulers and will reign over all kings and potentates cannot be changed. That is just the reality of it. No one possesses the ability to change that by physical force.

One day, this King will return by that same spiritual power to bring justice. He will gather His own to Himself. He will return and do those terrifying things we read about in the Book of Revelation. Then:

“For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God; for it is written, ‘As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.’ So then each of us will give an account of himself to God” (Romans 14:10b–12). 1

Everyone there, sinner and saint, will acknowledge the reality of the Lord’s kingship and give obeisance. By what power will they be compelled to do this?

“Then he said to me, ‘This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of hosts’” (Zechariah 4:6).

1All Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (2016). Crossway Bibles.

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