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The King and His Ambassadors- Speaker: James White

Psalm 24:7-10
7 Lift up your heads, O gates,
And be lifted up, O ancient doors,
That the King of glory may come in!
8 Who is the King of glory?
The LORD strong and mighty,
The LORD mighty in battle.
9 Lift up your heads, O gates,
And lift them up, O ancient doors,
That the King of glory may come in!
10 Who is this King of glory?
The LORD of hosts,
He is the King of glory.

- we speak much of kingship in our hymns, but today the idea of monarchy is almost laughable- the idea that there is a king who has absolute rule over his subjects is unpopular

Psalm 95:1-7a
1 O come, let us sing for joy to the LORD,
Let us shout joyfully to the rock of our salvation.
2 Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving,
Let us shout joyfully to Him with psalms.
3 For the LORD is a great God
And a great King above all gods,
4 In whose hand are the depths of the earth,
The peaks of the mountains are His also.
5 The sea is His, for it was He who made it,
And His hands formed the dry land.
6 Come, let us worship and bow down,
Let us kneel before the LORD our Maker.
7 For He is our God,
And we are the people of His pasture and the sheep of His hand

- these verses show the authority that God has as God- He has the right to do with His creation what He will- He raises up what He desires and tears down what He desires- as God's kingship is connected to His identity as Creator, it is little wonder that the secular, Darwinist spirit of the age rejects God's kingship as well as His creatorship (Spong is an example of this)
- we are very individualistic- we tend to read the Scriptures through the lenses of our society- although there is an individual aspect to God's Kingdom (we must each believe, we each are accountable before God for our sins), this gets overemphasized in our society, and in the church, today
- we tend to think that just because we are equal before God means that each of our opinions are equal
- instead of believing God as King, we make Him into our equal, a gentleman who would never force His will on us
- the idea of Christ as King is even more unpopular- our society sees Him as nothing
but a leftist do-gooder

- "Sad to say, much of Christendom is blind, or nearly so, to the Scriptural emphasis on the present kingship of Christ. Historic Lutheranism, from the Protestant Reformation to the present day, has stressed Christ's saviourhood rather than His kingship. It is characteristic of Fundamentalism to do likewise. The usual Fundamentalist is diligent in urging sinners to accept Christ as their personal Saviour, but he seldom tells them that they cannot possibly receive Christ as Saviour without at once acknowledging Him as king. The modern Dispensationalist goes so far as to say that Satan is in control of this present world. He overlooks the obvious fact that the only three passages of Scripture which denominate Satan "the prince of this world" assert that Christ by His death defeated Satan as prince of the world. With a view to His impending death Jesus said: "Now shall the prince of this world be cast out";46 "the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me";47"the prince of this world is judged".48 Karl Barth has insisted that it is folly to say that the kingdom is now present. According to him, Scripture teaches only that the kingdom has come nigh. Its actual arrival awaits a future crisis.

"And Modernism, which is in reality a denial of historic Christianity, while putting considerable emphasis on Christ's kingship, divorces it from the substitutionary atonement, which according to Scripture constitutes its foundation. God declares in Isaiah: "Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death, and he was numbered with the transgressors, and he bare the sin of many";49 and, after saying that Christ "became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross", Paul proceeds: "Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him and given him a name above every name".50 By severing Christ's kingship from its Scriptural foundation Modernism has transformed it into an air-castle. It cannot be denied that the present kingship of Christ is slighted, and even denied, by a great many who profess Christianity. - Westminster Theological Journal 11:1 (Nov 1948) p. 22

- the church is not a democracy- we don't have the right to decide how God's kingdom is run- we want to know what "the Bible means for me" but the truth is that divine truth has been true long before we existed and will exist long after we are gone- the Bible is not a magical talisman to satisfy our whims
- is Christ's Kingdom marked with confusion? it is not, although it may appear that way- however, much of what calls itself Christ's Kingdom is not Christ's Kingdom
- manmade gospels that do not proclaim Christ as kurios (Lord) leave men without a leader and will result in confusion

Titus 2:11-15
11 For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men,
12 instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously and godly in the present age,
13 looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus,
14 who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds.
15 These things speak and exhort and reprove with all authority. Let no one disregard you.

- one's belief in the above passage tells us how orthodox a group is- Christ is not dependent on us to accomplish His will- He uses us as an act of grace, but He does not have to- He doesn't need our permission for anything
- Christ is not merely trying to accomplish salvation, He is actually doing things- He even gets to determine what good deeds we do!

Ephesians 6:18-20
18 With all prayer and petition, pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints,
19 and pray on my behalf, that utterance may be given to me in the opening of my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel,
20 for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in proclaiming it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.

"First, every true minister of Christ is engaged upon royal business. He is doing business for the King of kings, the great Lord of all. He does not come in his own name, nor in the name of any Church nor in the name of any earthly
potentate; but he comes in the name of him who made heaven and earth, and who governs all things by the word of his power. I will, therefore, listen to him, even though he may be an illiterate man, for he is the servant of God. If it was really the gospel of Jesus Christ that I heard, little would it signify to me whether the lips that uttered it spoke in such tones as the golden-mouthed Chrysostom used of old, or in plain and rugged language like that of Simon Peter. It was his Master who sent him, and it was his Master's business to choose whom he would as his ambassador; therefore let me see the Master in the man, and hear the Master's voice in the gospel which his servant preaches; and let me bless God both for the gospel and for the man who preaches it, and let me pray that, since he has royal business to do, he may have grace to do it rightly"- Spurgeon

- where does the church hear Christ's voice? in His Word- Christians are given a love for His Word- when one does not have this love, he will not stay orthodox for long

Hebrews 13:17- "Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they keep watch over your souls as those who will give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with grief, for this would be unprofitable for you."

- whenever A&O goes to witness to Mormons or the like, there is a requirement that those who help are a member of a Bible-believing church- this is not sacerdotalism, it is a needed guard against loose-cannons and the immature, those that are not in submission to Christ's command to be part of a local church and in submission to one's elders
- the authority one has is only commensurate to the faithfulness of the delivery of the message of Christ
- God holds us accountable to the preached Word as if God was speaking Himself
- the presence of an authoritative ambassador is not needed when you no longer have a King from which you want to hear
- is our resolution to be a faithful ambassador for Christ, and is our resolution to be one who helps our elders be the best men of God they can be?
- we can be so focused on the narrow, negative things that we forget Christ is on His throne
- analogy of woven rugs- on one side, they are beautiful, but on the other side it is a mess of threads
- one of the greatest things we can have as Christians is balance- this does not mean we are in the middle or compromising- what it does mean is that we approach things with both boldness and grace, with firmness and love