“Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born.”Matthew 2:1–4
Jesus directly confronts us with the question “Who’s Your King?”
Is Jesus your King? Is someone else your King? Are you your own King?
The Wrong King
During the time of Jesus’ brith, Herod the Great was the King of Israel and Judah, but not the good kind of king. Herod was a selfish king, who even murdered his own wife, several sons, and other relatives. He used his power to his own advantage. Even in his evil ways, Herod had accomplished a lot. He was very wealthy, a master builder who even restored the Temple in Jerusalem.
So, when Jesus was born, Herod had gotten word and found himself curious but also concerned. Many people had been longing for and waiting for this Messiah to come. Herod did not want his kingdom and his political and religious reign to be threatened. At the same time, wise men also showed up in Jerusalem asking about this Messiah. They had seen the star and were familiar with the prophecies. Although wise men were prone to magic, astrology, dream interpretation, and sacred writings, they found themselves curious about the star that they saw and the news about this Messiah. As they entered Jerusalem to inquire about Jesus, Herod also demanded that they bring a report back to him.
If you keep reading in this chapter, you see them coming to the home of Jesus later after his birth but instead of investigating on Herod’s behalf, they worshipped Jesus. They were then warned in a dream not to go back and report to Herod. Herod was furious and had every male child killed in Bethlehem, hoping one of them would be Jesus. But Joseph, Jesus’ earthly father, being warned by an angel to depart, ran away with Mary and Jesus to safety. Therefore, a new King was taking his throne!
Years later Jesus is on trial before Pilate.
Then Pilate said to him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world—to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice.”John 18:37
Jesus is King but not in the worldly way. He is the eternal King. His Kingdom is not of this world, yet it overcomes and triumphs over this world! He is the King of truth and eternal life. Have you ever noticed that the name of Jesus just does something to people? There is something about that name that causes people to react. This reaction is either in rebellion to his Kingdom or in submission to his Kingdom.
We all have to ask ourselves the question, “Who’s My King?” If Jesus is who he says he is, keeps his promises, and died and rose again to give us forgiveness and life, he’s the King I want to serve!