post by Lisa Buffum, February 2, 2023
Begin by reading Psalm 21 on Biblegateway.com or in your own Bible.
Sometimes, we long for things that are not good for us. We may know this thing is not God’s best for us, but we want it anyway.
1 Samuel tells us that the people of Israel wanted a king. Samuel was resistant, but he prayed about it. God said to Samuel (v. 7-8): “Listen to all that the people are saying to you; it is not you they have rejected, but they have rejected me as their king. As they have done from the day I brought them up out of Egypt until this day, forsaking me and serving other gods, so they are doing to you. Now listen to them; but warn them solemnly and let them know what the king who will reign over them will claim as his rights.”
This is where the earthly kingdom of Israel began. The kingdom line that started with Saul, then David, then Solomon was a very Important to the people of Israel. A large chunk of the Old Testament chronicles the relationship between the people of Israel and their king(s).
King David, also psalmist for Psalm 21, is a beloved king of Israel. Psalm 21 reads like it is written from David’s perspective, as it truly is. David rejoices in the strength of the Lord and in his battle victories. David is great blessed. David wears the crown. David is exalted to splendor and majesty. David trusts in the Lord.
But, partway through the Psalm, we develop the sense that David isn’t really talking about himself here. David is also talking about the One that is to come, the One that Israel waits for, the Messiah.
The book of Matthew begins “This is the genealogy of Jesus the Messiah, the son of David, the son of Abraham . . .” This genealogy connects the two together in the same way Psalm 21 does. David’s kingdom was temporary and his reign was earthly. Jesus’ kingdom is eternal and beyond the bounds of earth. Matthew portrays this kingdom in numerous ways through his gospel.
In Jesus, God reinstates the kingdom which the people of Israel rejected in 1 Samuel 8. In Jesus, God reclaims His rights to be Lord and Master over our lives. He sets Jesus on the throne of glory and places a crown of pure gold on his head. Yet God still gives us the freedom to reject him or to follow him.
If I am to be a disciple, this is my choice. Do I follow Jesus and accept him as Lord and Master over my life? Or do I reject this? Do I trust God’s best for me? Or do I do what I want? It is a daily choice, and at times, a daily struggle.
In the Kingdom with you,
Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash
PS – I completed Becoming Accountable Disciples in person last summer to recertify as a lay servant. It’s a great course; I’m happy we also offer it online several times throughout the year. The next session starts Monday, February 6.
If you want to discuss this post, go to the BeADisciple Facebook Group and find the prompt there.
Lisa is the Director of Online Education for the Institute for Discipleship, overseeing the ministries of BeADisciple.com. Lisa completed a Master’s degree in Christian Ministry from Friends University in Wichita, Kansas, in May of 2006.
She is the mother of three children, and currently, “Mimi” to four grandbabies. Lisa teaches the instructor training course, Lay Servants as Christian Transformational Leaders, and other courses as needed, and provides technical assistance for instructors and learners for every IFD course.