Michael Youssef - The King Who Rules
You know, I know in this 21st century, we do not know nor comprehend what an absolute monarch or absolute authority is all about. Most of us today think of "monarchy" as we see in Europe. It was known as "constitutional monarchy". Very little power. Their power is mostly ceremonial. Their control or influence is mostly on an advisory capacity. The rule is mostly symbolic. We often think of King Jesus in the same way, that he is just an advisor, that he is, King Jesus is just there to accommodate to us, that he is there to help us only when we need him, that he is the one to whom we pray and we pay homage, or maybe note an acquaintance with him once a week on a Sunday morning in church.
But when the Bible speak of the Christ the King, it means that he has absolute power over us. It means that he has absolute control over us. It means that he has absolute authority over every aspect of our lives. It means that he is the only one to whom we fully surrender and crown him on a daily basis and obey him. And, because of these distinctives of the sovereignty of the Lord Jesus Christ, for a long time, he would not allow people during his public ministry to call him "King" for three almost a third of a year, he would not allow anyone to call him "King". They wanna make him king by force, but he refused, and he waited until Palm Sunday. Palm Sunday, the very first Palm Sunday was the first time during his public ministry the Lord Jesus Christ allowed the crowd to call him "King" for the first time.
On that first Palm Sunday for the first time in his earthly ministry, he allowed them to crown him King of all. Here is the irony: On the day of his coronation, King Jesus wept because he knew, in four days' time, the same people who are saying, "Hosanna, blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord," are gonna say, "Crucify him, crucify him," and they're going to reject their Savior King. King Jesus was before all of eternity. King Jesus is sovereign. He is King over his subjects. He has authority over his subjects. King Jesus will forever be King and Master and that nothing and no one can ever change that. The difference between now, being the King over his subjects, and in the future, in the day when he comes back to reign and rule, is that, while he reign and rule over the hearts of those who love him today, but the day is coming when the whole world would recognize and acknowledge King Jesus.
The day is coming when, whether they like it or not, they will confess King Jesus, for the Bible said, "Every knee, every knee shall bow at the name of Jesus, and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father". King Jesus. King Jesus is not only an eternal King, but he is incomparable with any earthly king, for he is the King of all kings. To be sure, like other kings, he expects allegiance from his subjects, but he never extracts it out of us. Like other kings, he has weapons, but they're not bullets and guns. His weapon is the weapon of love. Like other kings, Jesus has power, but he uses it to save his subjects. Like other kings, Jesus sits on a throne, but only for the good of those who love him.
And so I want to remind you he was no earthly king. He was no... cannot compare him with any earthly king, for he is the King of the universe. He is the only King who was born a King. See, all the other royalties, they get born as princes or princesses, but Jesus is the only one who was born a King, for he was the only King whose coming was foretold thousands of years before he was born. He's the only king who fulfilled all of the dreams and the aspirations of his people, those who are his subjects, and that is why the prophet Zechariah, who lived and prophesied hundreds of years before Christ was born in Bethlehem of Judea, he could prophesy and predict precisely with details how he's gonna enter into Jerusalem on that Palm Sunday.
Zechariah 9:9, "Rejoice greatly, O Daughter of Zion! Shout, Daughter of Jerusalem. See, your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey". Underline that verse in your Bible because you'll find that this verse, this verse, contrasts Jesus, King Jesus, with all other kings. That Palm Sunday stands in contrast with the previous three and a third of a year of his public ministry. For three years, as I said earlier, Jesus went about his ministry quietly. He avoided publicity. He shunned popularity. He often spent time alone with the Father. He often spend time alone with his disciples, but five days, five days before his crucifixion, all of that has changed. All of that has changed. This day, he enters Jerusalem as God's Messiah. He enters Jerusalem as God's Redeemer King. He enters Jerusalem as the divine Son of God who existed with the Father before all worlds. On this day, he enters Jerusalem as the ruling monarch, and that is why Zachariah said, "See, your king comes to you".
Now, the word "king" is really fascinating. There are some words that you find them, the same words in all three Semitic languages, Arabic, Aramaic, and Hebrew. "Malik" literally means, "Malik" means "the one who's able," or "the one who can". What does that mean to you today when you get up at 4 in the morning and go to work, what does that mean to you? It means that King Jesus is able to come and reign and rule in the lives of those who invite him. It means that King Jesus is able to come and defeat sin and temptation in the lives of those who love him. It means that King Jesus is able to come and deliver us from the oppression of sin, that King Jesus is able to defend the helpless subjects.
King Jesus is able to come and break the chains of bondage, that King Jesus is able to come to the desperate and to the discouraged subjects and give them joy, that King Jesus is able to come to the fearful and the frightened of his subjects and fill them with faith. It means that he is able to come to the lonely subjects and let them enjoy royal companionship. King Jesus is able to come to the anxious and the worried of his subjects and rule over their circumstances. Can I get an amen?
I wanna tell you four things: King Jesus was anticipated. Secondly, King Jesus was announced, and, thirdly, King Jesus was acclaimed, and, finally, King Jesus is above all. You see, he, Jesus did not just appear in a vacuum. It's not like those founders of religions who are confused and frustrated and depressed and went to the mountain and then says, "What do I do, what do I do"? and they come back and say, "Well, I saw a revelation". Not like that. He has been anticipated for thousand of years.
From Genesis, which is the first book in the Old Testament, for those of you who don't know, all the way to Malachi, which is the last book in the Old Testament, the coming of Jesus has been anticipated hundreds of times in details of his birth and crucifixion, even entering into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. For example, in Genesis 49, the Bible tells us that he's the only King whose scepter will never depart from his hand. In the book of Numbers chapter 24, he's the only King whose eternal domain is unquestioned. In 2 Samuel chapter 7, it tells us that he's the only King whose kingdom is forever.
In Psalm 2, the Bible tells us that he's the only King who's anointed King by God the Father himself. In Psalm 144, it tells us that he's the only King to whom all kings shall bow. In Isaiah 2, it tells us that he's the only King whose reign is in complete righteousness. He is the only King whose kingdom has no geographical boundary. And in Jeremiah 23, it tells us that he's the only King who is over all of the universe. And in Ezekiel 21 and 28, it tells us that he's the only King who rules over all kings. And in Daniel chapter 2, it tells us that he's the only King at whose feet all empires are gonna crumble and bow. In Malachi chapter 2, it tells us that he's the only King who has supernatural strength, supernatural power. And in Zechariah 14:9, it tells us he's the only King over all the earth. The question is, is he your King? Is he your King? Is he the King of your life? Is he your King? Only you can answer that. Only you can answer that.
See, the King, King Jesus was anticipated. Secondly, he was announced. See, the Old Testament foretold about his coming. The New Testament is enthralled to announce and to talk about him being here. He's arrived. In the Old Testament, we see a partial portrait of Jesus, King Jesus, but in the New Testament, we see a historic portrait. The New Testament announced that his supernatural nature, the New Testament announces his universal scope of his reign and rule. The New Testament announces his power that emanates from himself. The New Testament announced that his victory is over all oppression, and that is why, on Palm Sunday, King Jesus rode on to Jerusalem, not to conquer it, no, no, no, no, no, but to conquer hearts and wills with the power of his love.
Don't ever forget. Don't ever forget. Earthly kings, emperors, dictators, despots, they lord it over people, but King Jesus compels us with his sacrificial love. King Jesus was anticipated. King Jesus was announced. King Jesus was acclaimed. "The Divine, royal King is here. Come to him while you can". The King of all kings is here to rule not over some geographical location but rule over the hearts of those who surrender to him. The royal King of heaven is here not on a chariot that's pulled with horses but on a donkey. Why? Because the Bible said he rides the clouds to the help of his people. Remember that on that very first Sunday, Palm Sunday, on that very first Palm Sunday, the crowd, the masses cried out, "Hosanna, Hosanna". Can you say it with me?
It means "save now". That's what it means. In fact, unbeknown to them, they were proclaiming and fulfilling the prophecy of Zechariah. They were acclaiming that which was anticipated for many generations from the time of Adam and Eve. They were saying that the King whose love woos us is here. The King whose sacrifice will redeem us is here. The King whose power will conquer our will is here. The King whose strength will carry us through life's hardships is here. The King whose might will empower us to defeat sin and Satan and death is here. The King whose gracious invitation to us will allow us to reign and rule with him over the whole universe for all of eternity. He is here.
The question again, is he your King? Is he your King? He can be today if you accept his gracious invitation. He'll never force you. He'll compel you with his love. Finally, fourthly, King Jesus is above all. He's above all. In the book of Revelation, it makes it so clear. It makes it so clear that King Jesus is above all. King Jesus is preeminent. King Jesus has no equal. Has no equal. The crowns in the book of Revelation, they indicate or represent his constitutional authority. The diadems in the book of Revelation, they represent his absolute power. The crowns are the symbol of his conquering of sin and death and Satan. The diadem speak of him having no rival.
I wanna tell you the greatest problem that the church of Jesus Christ has today. The greatest problem. And I'm talkin' about the church in general, not the local church. The greatest problem today is those who claim to be subject of King Jesus, and yet they have lost their sense of awe and reverence to their King. That is the problem. And, beloved, so many are praying for revival. There can be no revival until God's people begin to restore their sense of awe, the awesomeness of our King Jesus. Until we regain that sense of awe and reverence, today most churches said, "Your friend Jesus, take him along the way as your friend". He's that to me. He's that to those who know him, but he's more than just a friend. He's the King of kings. He's the Lord of lords. He's to be bowed to. He's being reverenced.
Zechariah said, "See, your king comes to you, riding on a donkey". Why a donkey? Why not white horse like all the other kings? Because his unquestioned humility became complete. Of course, you know that leaving the splendor of heaven and laying aside the strappings of his splendor and power, not his divinity, he never laid that aside, and coming to earth and having nowhere to lay his head, dying on a cross, a criminal's cross, rising again, that's the ultimate in humility, but in order to fulfill the prophecy of Zechariah, he rides on a donkey, and that is why, you know, when those miserable Pharisees and Sadducees, when they heard people saying, "Hosanna, Hosanna, Hosanna, blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord," these Pharisees and Sadducees, when they came to Jesus, said, "Silence them. Silence them. Let them not say that".
Jesus said to them, "If they were silent, the rocks will cry out. The rocks will cry out". Today, more than ever, if I have one more day to live, I would make the same plea. More than ever, those who love Jesus, who claim to love Jesus, those who say, "Jesus is my King," they need to lovingly, listen, lovingly refuse to be silent. Say that with me, "refuse to be silent". However, if you wanna be effective, you'll have to first crown him Lord of your heart and Lord of your life. He has to be the King of your home, the King of your business, and the King of your marriage. Remember this as I conclude. I want you to remember this. He could not be confounded, for heaven of heavens could not contain him. He could not be elevated, for his throne, high above the summit of the universe, he could not be brightened for he is already brighter than jasper and sapphire.
Let me ask you a very personal question, and it's, really, you're the only one who could answer it. You're the only one. Have you enthroned him to be the absolute sovereign over your life? Have you crowned him to be the absolute sovereign over your family? Have you crowned him to be the absolute sovereign over your business? Have you crowned him to be absolute sovereign to be over your marriage? The reason so many marriages are in trouble is because Jesus is not sovereign over marriages. Is he the absolute sovereign over your finances? Today you can do just that. He's inviting you, and it's up to you if you want to respond.