Open your Bibles with me to I Timothy chapter 6, where we'll start today. I Timothy 6:15 and 16 will be our first Scripture reading. As we begin to think about this and just before we read this, I want to give you the setting. I want you to do something for me here for a moment. Humor me! I want you to close your eyes but not your ears. Close your eyes and I want you to imagine with me that you see Jesus. Just imagine with me that you see Jesus. We want to speak for a little while today on the subject of, "Seeing the King." Or we could put it in the past tense and say, "I Saw the King." But we want to see the King today.
I Timothy 6, verses 15 and 16 says this — "15 Which in his times he shall show, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords;
"16 Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen."
Today, I want you to think about the Glory of the King. I want you to imagine in your hearts and in minds that we are seeing the King, as we study these Scriptures together today.
There are several different viewpoints that we need to get of Jesus the King. The first one that we want to mention is, of course, Jesus in eternity. Let's go back in our mind's eye and think about the Lord in eternity. John gave us a good reference to start us thinking along this line, when he recorded John 17:5. We'll be reading more there in chapter 17 also, so just keep it after you find it. Remember now, we're getting a view of Jesus in eternity, or "the King in eternity," (John 17:5) "And now, O Father," this is Christ Himself speaking, of course, "glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was."
Then jumping on down to verse 24 in that same chapter, (John 17:24) he wrote: "Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world."
Now go over to Micah. We want to read one verse there. (Micah5:2) "But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting."
Now stay with me here, with your mind and heart and imagination wide open. You may have noticed, as I have, that there's a tendency when we think about Christ, to just begin to think about Him when He was born as a child in the manger. But that is not enough! We need to go back into that eternity past when He was with the Father before time began, before the earth was created, before man was created, back into eternity when Jesus was. He was with the Father. And we need to think of this when we begin to think about Jesus and seeing Him as the King. We need to remember that He did not begin with His birth in Bethlehem, though we'll be coming to that and taking a look at that event in a few minutes. The ETERNAL SONSHIP of Christ is an absolute necessity in Bible theology.
Now, as we go a little further, it's easy — an easy step from Jesus in eternity to think about Jesus in creation. Because it fits right together, doesn't it? There He was in eternity. The Father, the Son, and the Spirit in eternity. One and yet, three. Or three and yet, one. But let us now think of Him at the creation. In the first chapter of John, the first 14 verses have a great deal to say about Jesus in the creation, but we'll read only verses 3 and 4.
John 1:3-4 says these words — "(3) All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. "(4) In him was life; and the life was the light of men."
Now, one really should read all of the first fourteen verses of that chapter, but here we have a plain and simple statement that all things were made by Him, that nothing was made without Him, that in Him was life and that this life that's in Him (is and) was the light of men.
Now, if we turn over to Hebrews 1, verses 1 and 2, we find another interesting statement relative to Jesus in creation. (Hebrews 1:1-2). (1) "God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, (2) Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things," now here's the key phrase relative to our message today from this passage, "by whom also he made the worlds."
Then if we go back to Colossians we see that Colossians 1:16-17 says this — (16) "For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him. (17) "And he is before all things, and by him all things consist."
Now, before we leave this thought — we've read enough to show you clearly, if you believe the Bible at all — that Jesus was in creation and was in all of creation. He was the agent that created all things, including man. But before we leave these, I want to go back and mention one thing that's a little digression here on the reference in Hebrews chapter 1, where it says that He hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son.
You know, I just couldn't resist digressing here to mention that it doesn't say a word that He has spoken to us in these last days by the criminal Charles Russell who started the Jehovah's Witnesses. Or that He spoke to us by Judge Rutherford, who was his cohort and helped him develop it. It doesn't say a word about Him speaking to us by Mary Baker Eddy, the founder of Christian Science, falsely so called. It doesn't say a word about any of that.
Nor does it say a word anywhere in the Bible about Him speaking to us by Joseph Smith, the founder of Mormonism or Latter Day Saints, as they call themselves now. It doesn't say a word about any of those, and many others we could list, does it? It says He spoke to us in these last days by whom? ---- By His Son, Jesus. And we need to keep that in mind, though as I said, it's a little digression from our main theme today.
Going on as we think a little further now, back on the main track again, let's think about Jesus as He leaves heaven. We've thought a minute about Jesus in eternity and Jesus in the creation, now let's think for just a minute about Jesus as He leaves heaven.
I want you to close your eyes again for a moment, and I want you to imagine, and get a picture in your mind's eye, of a glorious and shining place. A place that's high and lifted up. A place where there's beautiful music all the time. Imagine that the street is paved with gold, each gate of the city is one giant pearl, precious stones and beautiful things of every kind and description are to be seen wherever you look. When choirs of thousands and thousands and thousands sing wonderful music all day long, and there's no night there at all. Because He is the light.
Now lift up your eyes and look, and see the most beautiful part of all. See this golden throne, which is the center of this glorious place. And upon this golden throne, we see seated at the Father's right hand, our matchless Saviour and King, Jesus. Jesus the King, the one we're looking at today. Thousands of angels come and go at His beck and call. Nothing happens without His knowledge. Nothing in the universe happens without His permissive will. There He is, seated on the throne, the golden throne, surrounded by the most beautiful rainbow.
Now, think for a minute with that picture in your mind, thousands and thousands and thousands or millions and millions and millions, coming and going at His beck and call in all of the universe. Everything is under His dominion and yet, Jesus leaves heaven. He leaves this glorious place. He leaves it and puts it behind Him. Not because He was forced to do so, but because of His love for mankind. It was the only way that man could be saved because it was the only way that man could have a Savior. The only way was for Him to leave all of this. Imagine now, as He takes it upon Himself to leave heaven and to take upon Himself the form of a man --- Coming to Earth to die for us.
Let's read this poem that I have here. It fits well at this point, from a songbook. It goes like this:
"He left the splendor of heaven, knowing His destiny.
Was the lonely hill of Golgotha, there to lay down His life for me.
If that isn't love, the ocean is dry.
There are no stars in the sky and the sparrows can't fly.
If that isn't love, then heaven's a myth.
There's no feeling like this, if that isn't love."
Oh, He left all the splendor and glory of heaven, knowing His destiny was that lonely hill of Golgotha, the place of a skull, the place of cruel executions on a Roman cross. And yet, knowing that He was going to die there for us He left all this glory he had with the Father before the world was.
And now, I can imagine, and I want you to do it too — as He left heaven, millions of angels weep. Millions and millions weep as He leaves heaven. And yet, He leaves. Not because He had to, not because He was forced to do it, but because it was the only way that man could have a Savior. And therefore, the only way that man could be saved. So, He left the glory of heaven and came down here, knowing that His destiny would be to die on Calvary for us, bearing our sins in His own body on the tree!
Now, let's think for a minute, as He leaves heaven or after He leaves heaven, about Jesus as a man. Think about Him, Jesus as a man. Go back in your mind's eye and imagine Jesus as a man, a genuine man among men. And don't let anybody tell you that He was one of these little sissified, dandy types that a lot of the pictures show Him to be. He wasn't. He was a man among men. A real man, a "man" man. Not one of these "its" that we have running around today, claiming they were born that way! He wasn't one of them! He was not at all like some of the ideas that are common about Him today.
Philippians chapter 2, speaks about Jesus as a man. It says this, Philippians 2:8, "And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross."
As we think of Jesus as a man, a real man among men, of course, one would begin with His birth and childhood. There's a great verse over in Isaiah chapter 7, verse 14, which speaks of this when it foretells His birth several hundred years before He came in the form of a child. "Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel."
Then if we go on to Isaiah 9:6, we find these words: "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given," now remember, all of these references from Isaiah were written hundreds of years before His birth. "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace."
And then if we turn over to Luke chapter 2, the old, familiar passage which we read often at Christmas, it tells of the fulfillment of these prophecies, where it says this, "And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn." So, we see when we think of Jesus as a man — you want to imagine Him first as He came to us, the virgin born Son of God. And his childhood there, when He grew up as a child, just like other children as far as outward appearance.
Imagine then His temptation after He became a man, we could read over in chapter 4 of Matthew, we won't read it today because of the time, but you should read that beginning with the very first of the chapter and read down through the entire section that tells about the temptation of Jesus.
It speaks of how He was tempted by Satan. He was tempted just as we are tempted. And yet, the difference is that often, we fall to the temptation, yet He didn't. No, He NEVER ONCE SINNED! We sin oftentimes when we're tempted. There's no sin in being tempted; the sin comes in giving in to this temptation. Too often we open the door wide and welcome temptation when it comes, but of course, He didn't. He was tempted in every way, as it tells us in Hebrews chapter 4, verse 15. It tells us that He was tempted in every way just like any man, just like all men are, where it says in 4:15 of Hebrews, "but was in all points," speaking of Jesus, "tempted like as we are, yet without sin." He must be seen or we must see Him as Jesus the man, to all appearances, a common man, a man among men and yet, the virgin born, the sinless Son of God.
Now, as we go on a little further, we might think of His work on Earth. Healing the sick, doing good, seeking and saving the lost, and establishing His church. And that's what He did while He was here. He didn't do any evil work at all.
Then think of His betrayal and His arrest. Get this in your mind! If you remember nothing else of this message, get a picture in your mind of this. When He was betrayed and arrested, He was spit upon. Think of it. Here is the King of Glory, who left the splendor of heaven, the King who came down deliberately from the mighty throne of the universe, the Creator and sustainer of all things. He left the golden throne surrounded by the rainbow with choirs of thousands and thousands of angels singing wonderful music and praises all the time. Millions coming and going at His beck and call. Nothing happening except by His expressed will. And yet, He left all that and came down here as a man. And when He is arrested, He's spit upon.
Then He's crowned with a crown of thorns and mocked and slapped and beaten by man. Now keep this picture in your mind, remember, thinking about Him in eternity. Matthew 26:53 says that He could have called down twelve legions of angels. Or as the song says, "He could have called ten thousand angels, to destroy the world and set Him free. He could have called ten thousand angels, but He died alone for you and me." That is a correct statement of the case, isn't it?
Going on a little further, in John chapter 10, verses 17 and 18, it says this, (Jesus is speaking there Himself), He said: "I lay down my life, that I might take it again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself." The only case, the only man in all of the millions and millions of men who have lived, the only case of a man who had the power to lay down His own life and to take it up again, and who did so. He was crucified and mocked as He died on the cross. And He did it for you and for me. Yes, for you and for me.
Just think about Jesus and get a picture in your mind of Jesus the King as a loving Savior, ready to save you now. Think about this for a minute. I well remember the time when I came to know Him as Savior and King. I was eight years old. Just a child, but I'd been raised in a preacher's home. It was in an old brush arbor meeting. Most of you probably don't even know what that is. But that was years ago in Bowie, Texas. The "brush arbor meeting" was still fairly common in those days. That would be over 40 years ago, since I am 51 now, soon to be 52. (Ed. Note: This sermon was originally preached in 1981. But at this posting time (8/15/11) I am almost 82 years of age, and still serving our King full time as a missionary).
For a "brush arbor meeting" they would secure a vacant plot or a vacant piece of land, haul in poles and willow branches from the country. They would put down the poles to hold up a rough overhead framework of poles. Then they'd put willow branches with the leaves, of course, over it for a shelter or for shade. And that was a brush arbor, as we called it, in those days. (The seating was usually rough lumber benches). Lots of revival meetings were preached, and hundreds of thousands of people back in those days and earlier, were converted in places like that. And then went on to work in our Churches, of course. But in one of those places like that, a little open air meeting, I remember the night I was saved, as if it were yesterday.
My father was up there preaching and it got to the point where I wasn't hearing anything he was saying. Because I could see the King. I could see Him hanging on the cross. And I was hearing very little of the sermon. I'd been under conviction some time before that, but that night I knew that I had to acknowledge the King as my Savior. And I did. And I haven't ever been sorry. (My sister just 2 yrs older than I was also saved that night). Not one time since, and never will I be sorry. Until one day I walk that golden street and cast myself at the feet of Jesus and kiss the nail scars on His feet. So, here and now I want YOU ALSO TO GET A PICTURE OF JESUS THE KING AS A LOVING SAVIOR. If He is stirring your heart now through His Word and His Holy Spirit, then you can be sure that HE IS READY AND ABLE TO SAVE YOU NOW.
Revelation 3:20 says, "Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me." So, the door is open. That is, the opportunity of salvation is open to any man who hears the voice of Jesus and surrenders to that voice. He has never rejected one who comes in repentance and faith!
John 3:36 says more about it when He said this, "He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him."
If you want a little more detail about how to be saved, Romans 10:9 and 10, and then reading verse 13, makes a very good, short outline of how to be saved. It goes like this. "That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation." Then verse 13 says this, "For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved."
Now after we have thought of Jesus as a loving Savior, let's think for just a moment, in closing, about King Jesus as judge in the last day. Because our Great King is going to be the judge --- the judge of all creation in the last day. Those who reject Him here, will one day stand before Him at the Great White Throne. The great, shining throne high and lifted up. And He'll judge them for their rejection of Him as Savior and King. The White Throne is not to determine guilt or innocence – It is to pronounce the sentence. All those who stand before the Great white Throne are already condemned!
Matthew 16:27 says this, speaking of that day: "For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works." And then, Acts 17:31, it speaks again of the same day. "Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained," that is whom? "By that man whom he hath ordained," --- Jesus, that is.
And then Hebrews 10:31, the last verse we'll read to you today. These are awful words and yet, they're so true. Because they're God's own words in His own book. It says, "It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God." And all those who reject Him as Savior and King will fall into His hands on that judgment day.
ARE YOU READY NOW FOR THAT DAY? ARE YOU SAVED? ARE YOU LIVING IN THE WILL OF GOD FOR YOUR LIFE? IF NOT, WHY NOT? GET RIGHT WITH GOD, DO IT NOW!