Hi everyone. Rob here.
This weekend my guys group had planned a road trip to Hawkes Bay. This morning we found out that wild weather and downed power lines meant that our accommodation had to be cancelled. We have made other arrangements and the road trip lives on but it’s a salient lesson for all of us. We are not in control. We are not in charge. But there’s a fine line to walk because humanity was given a mandate to rule. We are given kingdoms to reign over. How does this work?
We start with the simple fact that God is God and we are not. He is the absolute sovereign. The earth is the Lords and everything in it as the Psalm says. To him we bow the knee, plain and simple. However, God didn’t create humanity so he could have a master-servant relationship for all eternity. His desire was for us to share in his rule and enjoy his love and his kingdom. He created us out of love and joy so we could enjoy an eternity of love and joy. We were to rule because we participated in a loving relationship with our Creator.
What happens though, when you turn your back on the Creator and reject the relationship? It means we have also rejected the basis for our rule. Our attempts to rule will now cause harm so God has to thwart our plans to rule. He does so in order that the relationship might be restored. This is why Jesus came. As the Son of Man he came to lead the children of God home to the Father and his kingdom. As we become increasingly trusted apprentices of our older brother Jesus, as we learn to live like beloved sons and daughters of God, the more we will be trusted with kingdom responsibilities.
In practice then, for us, ruling happens when we surrender. We bow the knee, open our hearts, come to the cross and receive love. As we receive that love we find ourselves worshipping and returning the love that is given to us. And so the mutual love that is meant to exist between us and God is put into place. We become agents of love and when we do that then we are ruling in the name of God.
Paul sums up this process in his wonderful prayer found in Ephesians 3:14-19.
For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
Amen. May it be so.