Summary: This truth of the present reign of Christ can transform our motivation and make us optimists no matter how powerful the forces of evil.
Queen Victoria if England often expressed her wish that
Christ would return before she died so that she could cast her
crown at His feet. When she did die, her son Edward VII
ascended to the throne as king. He had been a rather wild
man in his younger years. A man by the name of John Knox
McEwen was concerned about the king enough to write him
a letter asking him if his majesty was born again in Christ.
He received a gracious reply in which the king said he was
the first man in all of England to express any concern for his
soul, and he gave a simple testimony of how he had, like his
mother, surrendered his heart and life to the King of kings.
John McEwen was 70 years old, and at 93 he was still telling
others of his letter from the king.
John the Apostle is also in his 90's as he tells us about his
letter, not from the king who bowed to the King of kings, but
from the King of kings before whom he bowed. John says in
verse 5 that Jesus is the ruler of kings on the earth.
The Hapsburg family once ruled half of Europe. Today,
only one Hapsburg still rules over the tiny land of
Leichenstein. It is a 61 square mile country, and is the 4th
smallest in the world. Jesus, however, has gone from a
carpenter who didn't even own a plot of ground to be buried
in to the ruler of kings on earth. You talk about a success
story. There is not another to match this one. We can think
of ourselves more highly than we ought, but we can never
exalt Jesus beyond what he is worthy. We too often do not
exalt Him to the place He should rightly have in our minds
If a hunter got out of a car and asked you to do
something, you would not respond with the same enthusiasm
as you would if a ruler or dignitary asked you for service.
The higher the authority the more we respond, and that is
why it is important to stress the Lordship and Kingship of
Christ. It is easy to see why the world does not acknowledge
Jesus as King. Jesus is a total mystery to the world, and His
success story is beyond their comprehension. Helen Kramer
expressed it so well in her play titled For Heaven's Sake.
Two well dressed business men with attache cases meet in a
bar. One has just been handed a track with the title Carry
Christ Into Your Work. He looks at it and sings this song of
"He was a flop at 33! His whole career was one of failure and
of loss, But the thing that so distressful Is He could have
been successful, But instead of climbing up, He climbed a
He was a flop at 33! He jumped from carpentry to preaching
to the mob. He never was adjusted So He spent His whole
And He never got promoted on the job!
He never saved a single cent,
And Dun and Broadstreet wouldn't list Him on their list,
He could not establish credit And you might as well be dead
At 33 as have your credit not exist!
He spent His time with fisher folk,
When there were more important contacts to be made.
He would contemplate on flowers And ignore the cocktail
Its no wonder that He never made the grade!
Now you and I have never flopped,
And yet our names are never dropped
The way that they've been dropping His since He's been
We've fought our way to the top.
We're both established as successful men of worth,
So the thing that puzzles me,
Is why that flop at 33
Is called the most successful man to live on earth?"
It is easy to see why Jesus is a mystery to the world. But it
is hard to grasp why even Christians sometimes ignore or
deny the Kingship of their Lord. Many commentators just
skip over these words of verse 5 like they are a mere minor
matter of no great significance. John says that Jesus is three
things here. He is the Faithful Witness, the first born from
the dead, and the Ruler of kings on the earth. The first two
are handled quite well by most commentators, but the third
one is so radical and shocking in all of its implications that
men are afraid to look at it honestly. Many just skip over it
in embarrassment. The Living Bible robs it of its force by
saying, "He is far greater than any king in all the earth." That
is a weak translation, for John says, "He is the ruler of