Saturday, September 15, 2007

Governor Among the Nations


"Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: but made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: and being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." The epistle of Paul the apostle to the Philippians ch.2, vss.5-11 [KJV]

"Strengthen ye the weak hands, and confirm the feeble knees: say to them that are of a fearful heart, Be strong, fear not: behold, your God will come with vengeance, even God with a recompense; He will come and save you." The book of Isaiah ch.35, vss.3-4 [KJV]

NOTE: A serious "Head's-Up" to all Civil Magistrates & Ecclesiastical leaders is enclosed in the following article. Also, it should prove to be a joyful reminder and great comfort unto God's faithful and called-out saints. This article originally appeared in the Vol.1, No.21, July 1, 1868 A.D. issue of The Christian Statesman.

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Governor Among the Nations

by Samuel Carlisle


The book of Psalms is full of Christ. It everywhere exhibits the Redeemer in the dignity of his person, and the excellency of his work. Remarkable, however, even among the Psalms known as Messianic, is the twenty-second, in which the title at the head of this article is applied to Christ. As we read this Psalm, the incidents of our Lord's humiliation, and his subsequent exaltation pass in clear perspective before us. We see many bulls compassing him, strong bulls of Bashan surrounding him, piercing his hands and his feet. We see his garments parted, and lots cast upon his vesture. We hear him exclaim, in the depth of his terrible agony, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" We see him emerge from the darkness. The triumphs of his gospel are celebrated. The kindreds of the nations worship before him, and amidst subjects gathered from all the ends of the world, and bowing in adoration before his throne, he is proclaimed "Governor among the nations." There can be no doubt that this title is applicable to Jesus as the exalted Mediator. In other passages of Scripture he is similarly designated--"The first born, higher than the kings of the earth"; "King of nations"; "Prince of the kings of the earth"; "King of kings, and Lord of lords." And eminently is he fitted for this honorable position. The nations cannot have a Governor more suitable.

1. Intellectual and moral qualifications are essential to official position and authority among men. Social peace and prosperity are dependent, to a great extent, upon these qualifications in the ruler. "When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice; but when the wicked bear rule, the people mourn." "Thou shalt provide out of all the people," says Jethro to Moses, "able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness, and place such over them to be rulers." And the counsel of Moses to the Israelites was: "Take you wise men, and understanding, and known among your tribes, and I will make them rulers over you."

These important qualifications are found in their highest degree of perfection in the "Governor among the nations." He is God's "well beloved Son"; "the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person." "His understanding is infinite." He knows every subject of his extensive empire; he fully understands the law which is to be administered--the principles upon which the government is to be conducted; he sees what is best to be done in every possible contingency, and commands the means by which everything is to be effected. No injustice can characterize his reign, for "He is without sin," "just in all his ways, and holy in all his works." The scepter of his kingdom, by which he subdues and protects his people, and overcomes their enemies, is "a right scepter." The law which he administers is perfect, adapted to men in every age, every land, every stage of civilization, never requiring revision nor amendment--like himself, it is immutable. The highest interests of the subjects will never be disregarded in this kingdom, for he who sits upon the throne is the same tender and compassionate One that wept at the grave of Lazarus, and in prospect of the terrible judgments which were to be inflicted upon Jerusalem.

2. Legal qualifications are as essential to a ruler as personal fitness. Whatever his personal fitness, the man who occupies official position should be elected to it in a constitutional manner.

Such fitness also has the "Governor among the nations." True, the nations have not chosen him to be their ruler. On the contrary, "the kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together against the Lord, and against his Anointed." Nevertheless, the "Governor among the nations" "is seated upon a throne, the foundation of which is justice and judgment." God the Father has anointed him as King, and has committed all judgment unto him, "that all men should honor the Son even as they honor the Father." The Psalmist in another Psalm describes his investiture with authority in this sublime language: "The chariots of God are twenty thousand, even the thousands of angels: the Lord is among them, as in Sinai, in the holy place. Thou hast ascended on high, thou hast led captivity captive"; and again, "The Lord said unto my Lord, sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool."

The apostle John, caught up in the spirit to the door opened in heaven, was revealed the following significant vision: "Behold, a throne was set in heaven, and one sat on the throne. And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper, and a sardine stone." The occupant of the throne, God the Father himself, characterized by the description as a being of infinite purity and justice, held in his right hand a book "sealed with seven seals." A strong angel proclaims with a loud voice the challenge, "Who is worthy to open the book, and to loose the seals thereof?" And John wept much, because no man was found worthy. But his tears are soon stayed, for lo, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Lamb slain, "came and took the book out of the right hand of him that sat upon the throne." How full of meaning is the whole scene! The book sealed with seven seals symbolizes the sovereign and mysterious purposes of God in their completeness. The Father's act, putting the book into the hands of the Lamb, exhibits Christ as divinely authorized to administer the government in the operations of which these purposes are wrought out. The taking of the book, and the opening of the seals by the Lamb, signifies the Redeemer's voluntary assumption and execution of the Mediatorial office and work. What wonder, then, that the four living creatures, and the four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, and "sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof."

3. The honor of authoritative place and ruling power is frequently the reward among men for eminent services. Thus was Joseph honored in Egypt, and Daniel at the court of Babylon.

But noble and meritorious as services performed by patriots and philanthropists may have been, none are worthy to be compared, whether we consider the person, the motive, the work itself, or the glorious blessings resulting from its accomplishment, with those which Christ rendered when he obeyed the law, and endured its penalty, by one offering perfecting forever them that are sanctified. The Redeemer's unparalleled services in behalf of man give him a claim to Mediatorial dominion over the nations which no generous mind can dispute. "Thou art worthy," say the living creatures and elders in humble and adoring acknowledgment of the right as well as the fitness of the Lamb to administer the government, "for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us unto God." "He humbled himself, and became obedient to death--even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father."

May our nation soon bend her knee in subjection to this "Governor among the nations" and his righteous law; and may her confession of her sovereign Lord, solemnly recorded where men go to learn a nation's character, in the Constitution, be publicly known and read of all nations of the earth. Neglect is attended with danger. Social peace and prosperity are promoted by obedience. "Blessed is that people whose God is the Lord."

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"We have staked the future...upon the capacity of each and all of us, to govern ourselves, to sustain ourselves, according to the Ten Commandments of God." --- James Madison, 1788

"By giving the government unlimited powers, the most arbitrary rule can be made legal; and in this way a democracy may set up the most complete despotism imaginable." --- F. A. Hayek

"The highest glory of the American Revolution was this: It connected in one, indissoluble bond, the principles of civil government with the principles of Christianity." --- John Q. Adams

"A legislature must not obstruct our obedience to Him from whose punishment they cannot protect us. All human laws which contradict His laws we are in conscience bound to disobey." --- George Mason

The LORD JESUS CHRIST be magnified (not mere men)!

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