Jesus Rules with Joy and Freedom

“Jesus answered, ‘My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.’ Pilate asked him, ‘So you are a king?’”    (Jn. 18:36-37)

Pilate had every reason to be dumbfounded. The disheveled and bloodied man before him didn’t look like any king he had ever seen.

Did King Jesus have an army? No, only a few were disciples who deserted him. Did He wear regal clothing? No, only a few rags. Did He have a crown of gold? No, only a crown of thorns. Did He reign from a throne? No, He reigned from a cross.

Despite not having any of the symbols of power, Jesus is a king like no other.

Our king battled not with arms of war but with the arms of His mercy.

Our king didn’t come to divide and conquer people but to reconcile them.

Our king rules not by fear but by love.

Our king defeated foes that have never been beaten—through His cross, Jesus defeated all that separates us from God; and through His resurrection, He defeated death.

Our king doesn’t rule over some piece of land but over the whole universe.

Most kings don’t have time for the small things, but our king wants His kingdom to include that small thing called our heart.

Most kings are too busy to see their followers, whereas our king desires to be with us always.

Other kings have come and gone, but our king remains and rules forever.

Other kings rule by dominating, but our king rules through our believing, following, and trusting.

Our king woos, doesn’t force; beckons doesn’t boss; invites doesn’t demand.

Other kings may be willing to break people, but our king takes broken people and makes them whole.

Today’s meditation encourages us to ask one question: Is Jesus our King? If so, then let us kneel and adore together. If not, when are we going to realize that having anyone or anything else be our king—or our queen—doesn’t work? Having Jesus as our king leads to joy and freedom. All others lead to servitude and bondage.

Reflection Questions:

  1. Do your actions and words reveal that Jesus is your King?
  1. Is there some part of your life that you would like to be in charge of, some part where you would just as soon keep to yourself? If so, what do you think King Jesus would like you to do?
  1. How does or how could King Jesus work through you to extend His Kingdom?

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