The King – Part1

It makes no sense to have a kingdom without someone to ruler over it. A king is necessary for a kingdom to function. The study of who is to be the king of this kingdom provides a unique perspective to better understand the kingdom. If the kingdom already exists, then the king rules over the kingdom by the rules that the kingdom already contains. Or, if the king exists first, then the kingdom becomes a reflection of the king. The kingdom is predominately shaped by the king who rules over it.

In the case of the kingdom of heaven; the king, Jesus Christ, has existed from the beginning. The first page of the Bible describes how God made the world. When it became time for God to create man, the record oddly reflects that God was not alone.

Genesis 1:26 “…Let us make man in our image,…”.

The Bible records that God did not make man by himself. How often have we heard that God made man, as if He was alone? Yet God says, “us”. To whom was He speaking? It was His son, Jesus. Several thousand years later, the prophecy that Jesus was to die as the sacrifical lamb for our sins was foretold by the prophet Isaiah.

Isaiah 53:7 “He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter,…”

Less that two thousand years later, the third book in the New Testament, Luke 2: records the birth and early life of Jesus as a man upon the earth.

Since Jesus, the king, existed before the kingdom of heaven, it requires that we study the king to reach a better understanding of the kingdom. I have chosen to examine three chapters from the book of John (the fourth gospel) to provide a basis for this study of the king Jesus.

The story, that surrounds these three chapters of John, begins with Jesus washing the feet of His disciples just before the passover feast. As the feast begins, the other disciples learn that it is Judas who has chosen to betray Jesus. Judas has just departed, and Jesus has informed His disciples that He is going to leave. Jesus gives them a new commandment to love one another; and that He must leave them but they cannot follow Him. Peter says that he would follow Jesus and even die for Him. Peter is told that before the rooster crows the next morning, he will deny Jesus three times. The disciples were very troubled over these statements and events. The study of a king begins as Jesus speaks to His disciples.

John 14:
1. Let not distress be in your heart; believe in God, also believe in
me.
2. In the house of my Father there are many places to live; if this was not so, I would have told you; because, I go to prepare a place for you.
3. and, if I go to prepare a place for you, then I will come again and receive you to myself; then where I am you will be also.
4. And where I go, you know the way.

The son of God, Jesus, the one who has received the spirit from God (see: Matthew 3:16; Mark 1:10; Luke 3:22; John 1:32), is telling His disciples a truth. A truth that comes from this spirit within Him. Distress can be removed from the heart of a man by belief in God. Distress can be removed from the heart of a man by belief in Him, Jesus. This distress removing belief is preparing us residency in the house of God. The king is going to leave, to leave and build His believers a home. Yet, even after He has done this work, Jesus is to return again to take us there himself. This truth, the king’s word, establishes immediately something different about this kingdom. The king is only asking for us to believe, for if we believe then we know the way to the place He is building for us. This kingdom is not asking us to build something for it, this kingdom is only asking for us to believe the king.

Jesus is the way to God. He is the living truth out of the mouth of God. He is the tree of eternal life. (This implies a much richer meaning into the worship of Eucharist or communion.) Yet exclusively there is no other way to God. Oh, how equitable is God in simply giving us Jesus to be the one way. (Proverbs 19.21) Just think upon the many different ways man has attempted to use; to draw near to God. Jesus is the word of God in the flesh, and what God announces; He is. To see God is to know Him, for the lamp of the heart is the eye. The disciples had seen the Lord, but had not truly known him. This loss of true perception is a thing that keeps us from God.

John 14:
5. To him [Jesus] Thomas said: Lord, we know not where you go; how do we know the way?
6. To him [Thomas] Jesus said, I am the way and the truth and the life; no one comes to the Father except through me.
7. If you had known me, then you would also have known the Father. From this moment on you know Him and have seen.

Jesus is telling us that if we want to see God, with sight guided by the heart, then we can know Him. Really seeing Him. Then, our sight would give us true comprehension of the Father. Oh, to search one’s self for this sight. No, there is no search; for He has told us we know the way. Therefore faith must give us this sight. A sight that is also felt in the heart. A gift of sight that can be felt and also comprehended, a sight that can be understood. A sight that reveals Jesus as a lens through which we can see God with understanding. Let me plainly say He is not referring to understanding given by scripture alone; but rather understanding received in the heart when we see Him. If we try to understand this solely with the mind, then we will find ourselves very much like Philip. Let the reader understand, that when the Lord refers to this sight; He means that you not only see something, but you understand what you are looking at. So if we really see Jesus, then, we will also see God and understand what we see; we will know God. It then becomes quite obvious that getting to know God is one of the primary reasons that Jesus is the king of this kingdom. Let us go on.

To see Jesus is to see God. Jesus is in God and God is in Jesus. The kingdom of heaven cannot be a physical kingdom – not of this world as a kingdom that we are familar with. Please do not confuse the function of the retina as a function of sight within the eye as a means to understand this sight. This sight is rather the sight of the heart. (The picture of what you are seeing reaches the eye and then the brain receives the image. One must then understand what
this image is. When you see Jesus, the heart also twinges and you really see for the first time.) Jesus is in God, for out of the realm of God’s authority (His spoken word) does Jesus come. The word comes from God; and, Jesus is that word made flesh. God is in Jesus. He gave him His spirit. (Matt. 3.16-17) Jesus’ submission to the spirit of God was complete. The only words He spoke were those from God. It is not that He was being used, for to be used one must blindly do so or be forced. Jesus wanted to do the Lord’s will. He was willing to prove it. If we would only believe we could; or respectively should, do the same works He did. What works did this king do? Here are just a few of the works of His witness.

  1. submitted completely to the will of God
  2. loved all men
  3. healed the sick, blind, lame
  4. cast out demons
  5. raised the dead
  6. with love, forgave all men of their sins
  7. died for us willingly (carried our sins personally into the depths of hell)

Do we really believe? Where is the evidence of believers today? Where is all of the power we need? Where is His presence; as the disciples were allowed to have? How can we truly go on as we have been? What is the king’s answer?

John 14:
8 Phillip says to [Jesus] him: Lord, show us the Father, and it suffices for us.
9. Jesus said to him [Philip]: Have I been such a long time with you Philip, and, you still do not know me? The one having seen me has seen the Father. How then can you say, Show us the Father.
10. Don’t you believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? These words you hear are not my own. But, the Father who abides in me, He is doing the work.
11. Believe it, the Father is in me and I am in Him; but, if not, believe because of the actual works.
12. Truthfully, truthfully, I am telling you, the one believing in me will do the works that I do; and, even greater works he will do because I am going to the Father.

I often find myself asking the question of Philip. “Lord, show me the Father.” And I hear Him answer, “Ken, have you been with me such a long time and still ask? Don’t you believe?” Now you know the reason I write these things to you that you too might share with me His answer and understand. We must somehow desire to grasp this concept that God and Jesus are the same; but still individually two different entities. Jesus by choice, is the same as God. If we seek to understand the king, Jesus, we have simultaneously come to know God. Jesus granted us a humble beginning place for this belief. Even if we cannot believe that He are God are one, just let the works that He did bear witness to us. Learning to know someone can sometimes be learned by examining the things that they did. However, by learning or by belief, we will mirror the works of the one we strive to emulate.

We must go on! We must believe and ask in His magnificent name, JESUS. This will bring glory to God through Christ. If we would only ask, He will answer us!

John 14:
13. And, whatever you ask in my name I will do, so that in the Son, the
Father may be glorified.
14. If you ask anything in my name, I will do it.
15. If you love me, my commandments you will keep.

To really ask is to love and obey what He has asked us to do. If we would believe; oh what work of faith is in the word, believe. This simple act of believing is the crushing blow our hearts so desperately need. Love can never flow where the heart asks not or has not been crushed by belief in the overt love of God expressed in Jesus. To believe and ask is to receive the promise of Jesus in our hearts – right now! He has promised it, if we but only look, see, know, and believe. We must realize that the this simple act is of tremendous consequence. We learn to love as a result; and, because we love we keep the king’s commandments. Obedience now is not an obligation, but rather, the fruit of our new relationship with the king.

Let no one state or assume that this is a formula for salvation. The clergy has sufficiently given us enough formulas to fill many a cook book. No, God forbid, as we progress you will begin to see that these words and feelings become as it were a spontaneous reaction. A consequence of the law of God placed upon a receptive spirit in a man about to be born of the spirit. A reaction of such proportions that even the blood of the lamb of God is used to remove the bondage of sin and death. An event that allows man to become the fruit of the cross and a living vessel grafted upon the vine of resurrection (the Messiah).

John 14:
16. I will request of the Father, and another comforter He will give you, that he will remain with you forever.
17. The spirit of truth, which the world cannot grasp; because, it perceives him not, nor knows him. But you know hi; because he will abide with you and be in you.
18. I am not leaving you orphans, I am coming to you.
19. In a little while the world will no longer see me; but you see me because I live, you will live, too.
20. In that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you.
21. The one who has my commandments and keeps them, that is the one who loves me. And, the one loving me is me will be loved by my Father. I will love that one and I will evidence [manifest] myself to that one.

Jesus has asked God to send us the second comforter. Who was the first one? The first comforter is Jesus himself. Now the king is leaving; but He is not going to leave us orphans. Praise God! The second comforter is the Holy Spirit, the spirit of truth. The spirit is to abide with us and in us till the returning of Jesus. The world cannot know this new comforter. To receive His spirit is to see and know Him. To see and know is to believe. To believe is to have the spirit in you. How simple yet how true is God’s plan. We do nothing but surrender; to receive and receive and receive. (This may help the reader to understand grace; a ‘gift’ without need of payment – Jesus paid the price.) Therefore, we are not orphans (cut off by sin from our inheritance) but rather sons and daughters of the living God – because Jesus will return.

He, the spirit, cannot be seen by the unbeliever, yet even though He is not (appears as being invisible to the unbeliever), He still can be seen by the heart of the believer. For the believer has
been given the same spirit and heart as God gave to His son Jesus. Upon the return of the Lord, all will be fully known. Understanding will be complete for those who have seen and heard and believed. This gives us a greater understanding of our situation. If we see now and understand; what is the complete understanding? It is sufficient to know that God allows us to see what we need to know and nothing more. We often find, by the spirit of God, that we can look at the same thing again and see more than the last time we looked at it. This is much the same as what happened to us as we grew from a child to an adult. How that with continually seeing, we increase our understanding of the same things we have seen may times before. Now that we comprehend that, God ‘is’ in Jesus, and Jesus ‘is’ in God, and we ‘are’ in Jesus and God.

Love is the giving thrust of power in belief. To love and obey is to receive and know and be known to God through Jesus. Then and only then can one see Jesus in his heart, for sight is not faith but fact.

Love, love, love. If we (agape) love, we love by obedience what the Lord has said. What He has said is the truth of God through the spirit. If we do not obey, we do not love; and, we shall never see or know Jesus or God our Father. Yet the spirit is to teach us all things and remind us all that has been said. He will renew us continually from within the word of God. (The word of God is more than the printed record on a page of the Bible. It is also the spirit’s movement in understanding upon the pages of the heart of the one to whom He speaks and abides within.) Listen to the voice of God that will come to abide within you, if you but ask. Remember what the king has done? He chose to listen and say what God had prepared for Him. If we chose to obey the king, we choose to act like the king. Jesus has said; believe, see, know, and live.

John 14:
22. Judas, not the Iscariot, says to him [Jesus]: Lord, and what has
happened that to us thou art about to manifest thyself and not to the world?
23. Answering, Jesus said to him [Judas]; if anyone loves me, he will keep my words, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and we will make our abode with him.
24. The one who does not love me, he will not keep my words; these words you hear are not mine but of the Father who has sent me.
25. These things I have said to you while I am still with you.
26. But, the comforter, the holy spirit which the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and remind you of all the things which I have told you.

This king doesn’t grant blessings, He only asks for obedience. Obedience to Jesus is a consequence of our love toward Him. If we obey, God and Jesus will come and abide in us. Think of these things not as a cause and effect, but rather an equation. Love = obedience; no love = disobedience.

I address your attention to verse 26, as I stop for a moment, to discuss a teaching found among some believers. It has been taught that the coming of the second comforter was to bring to us; as believers after the resurrection, the Bible, “to remind us of all the things which I have told you.” It is true that the spirit has delivered unto us this instrument of record. However, I would
plainly ask, “When has anyone ever witnessed the act of a Bible getting up and instructing or teaching “you all things.” The Bible is a book. It is a book written by the hand of God through the
spirit. It is an object, not alive like a spirit. Much the same as the ten commandments were the law, but were contained by Judaism to the physical tablets of stone. (The living word is Jesus. John 4) The written word can do nothing of itself. The written word in the heart of a man can do everything! The problem is, this teaching can only be accepted if you assume one thing. Man must himself take responsibility of the spirit of God, to teach himself what the spirit has reminded us of through the written record; the Bible. This singular point cannot be just to the disciples, who were listening to Jesus, and everythig thing else applies to all believers. If that were so, the Bible would have expressly stated such. To assume such false teaching is disobedience to the words of Jesus and leaves oneself short of all the blessings of seeing the Father. No, the words are plain, it is the spirit of God, the one that comes in the name of the king, that will remind us and instuct us.

John 14:
27. Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you; not as the world gives do I give it to you. Don’t let your hearts be troubled; nor, let them be fearful.
28. You have heard what I have told you; I go and I come to you. If you loved me you would have rejoiced that I am going to my Father, because my Father is greater than me.
29. And now, I have told you these things before they have happened, so that when they happen you will believe.
30. No longer will I speak of many things with you. For the ruler of this world is coming; and in me, he has nothing.
31. But the world may know that I love the Father, and as the Father has commanded me so I will do. Arise, let us go hence.

The gift of our love toward God through Jesus is returned in His peace. A peace only those who have seen can receive and give. This peace is from the Lord, the one who did love and obey
perfectly the will of God. Have we yet known this peace? Have we yet known that the joy of the Lord is available to us in the beautiful gift of peace placed in the heart of the believer filled with the comforter? Look, see, know, and receive.

The peace of the Lord fills the heart and removes the seed of disbelief and fear. Jesus knew this for God had told him. The prince of this world was to appear, but Jesus knew he was
nothing. He is nothing. His nothingness would show to the world that Jesus really loved God and desired to do His will. Satan, the prince, lay identified before the eyes of the believer’s heart. This exposure to belief through Jesus has reduced him to nothingness. (Without belief in Jesus, he is something. This nothingness is not powerlessness for he still sought to destroy the
son of man in hell. The nothingness Jesus is describing, only refers to the fact that Satan no longer has ruling domain over our inheritance. He may still seek to destroy us, but we are sealed. See Ephesians 1.3-14 and 1 John 5.18-20.)

This peace revives the believer and he can see the prince (Satan) for what he really is. Let the sight giving peace (assurance) of Jesus enter us all to remove our troubled hearts, and be set free. Amen. This king has provided a means to reduce the enemies of His rule to ashes. This king has provided a means to protect those whom choose to call Him king.

Kenneth D. Davis

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Last modified 22 Jun 2005