What type of government do you have?


Is it a dictatorship? Is it a monarchy? Is it a theocracy? Is it a democracy? Is it a republic? Is it an oligarchy? Is it an anarchy? Is it something else?

Do you realize the benefits and the detriments of that form of government? Do you realize the people involved are just humans which means they aren’t perfect? So what leads them? What directs their path? What causes them to do what they do? Do you see some walking out their role with God? Do you see some walking out their role in opposition to God? Do you see some doing good? Do you see some doing evil? What type of character do they show? What purpose are they there for? So many questions and we see throughout the Bible how based on where people are at (walking with God, walked away from God) different types of leaders showed up that cause people to turn back to God. Don’t reject God! Don’t turn your back on God! Consider what you are asking for in comparison to what God would have planned or designed for you! Do you really want to go your own way like the lost son or prodigal son? Return to God! Put your trust in Him!

Whatever type you have, let’s remember and reflect on:

1 Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. 2 Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. 3 For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended. 4 For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience.

6 This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God’s servants, who give their full time to governing. 7 Give to everyone what you owe them: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor. –from Romans 13

and

1 And I stood upon the sand of the sea, and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and upon his horns ten crowns, and upon his heads the name of blasphemy.

2 And the beast which I saw was like unto a leopard, and his feet were as the feet of a bear, and his mouth as the mouth of a lion: and the dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority.

3 And I saw one of his heads as it were wounded to death; and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast.

4 And they worshipped the dragon which gave power unto the beast: and they worshipped the beast, saying, Who is like unto the beast? who is able to make war with him?

5 And there was given unto him a mouth speaking great things and blasphemies; and power was given unto him to continue forty and two months.

6 And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.

7 And it was given unto him to make war with the saints, and to overcome them: and power was given him over all kindreds, and tongues, and nations.

8 And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

9 If any man have an ear, let him hear.

10 He that leadeth into captivity shall go into captivity: he that killeth with the sword must be killed with the sword. Here is the patience and the faith of the saints.

11 And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had two horns like a lamb, and he spake as a dragon.

12 And he exerciseth all the power of the first beast before him, and causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed.

13 And he doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men,

14 And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.

15 And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.

16 And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:

17 And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name.

18 Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.

–Revelation 13

and

Jesus Comes to Jerusalem as King

12 The next day the great crowd that had come for the festival heard that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem. 13 They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting,

“Hosanna!”
“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”
“Blessed is the king of Israel!”
14 Jesus found a young donkey and sat on it, as it is written:

15 “Do not be afraid, Daughter Zion;
see, your king is coming,
seated on a donkey’s colt.”
16 At first his disciples did not understand all this. Only after Jesus was glorified did they realize that these things had been written about him and that these things had been done to him.

17 Now the crowd that was with him when he called Lazarus from the tomb and raised him from the dead continued to spread the word.18 Many people, because they had heard that he had performed this sign,went out to meet him. 19 So the Pharisees said to one another, “See, this is getting us nowhere. Look how the whole world has gone after him!”

Jesus Predicts His Death

20 Now there were some Greeks among those who went up to worship at the festival. 21 They came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, with a request. “Sir,” they said, “we would like to see Jesus.” 22 Philip went to tell Andrew; Andrew and Philip in turn told Jesus.

23 Jesus replied, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.24 Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.25 Anyone who loves their life will lose it, while anyone who hates their life in this world will keep it for eternal life. 26 Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me.

27 “Now my soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour. 28 Father, glorify your name!”

Then a voice came from heaven, “I have glorified it, and will glorify it again.” 29 The crowd that was there and heard it said it had thundered; others said an angel had spoken to him.

30 Jesus said, “This voice was for your benefit, not mine. 31 Now is the time for judgment on this world; now the prince of this world will be driven out. 32 And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” 33 He said this to show the kind of death he was going to die.

34 The crowd spoke up, “We have heard from the Law that the Messiah will remain forever, so how can you say, ‘The Son of Man must be lifted up’? Who is this ‘Son of Man’?”

35 Then Jesus told them, “You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. Whoever walks in the dark does not know where they are going.36 Believe in the light while you have the light, so that you may become children of light.” When he had finished speaking, Jesus left and hid himself from them.

–from John 12

Walk out this life with Jesus as your Lord! He will be our Lord and King so let’s live out our lives like He is! Let’s pray for those in authority over us! Let’s pray for the communities we live in that more and more people will turn back to God and walk in alignment to Him! Go after Jesus! Don’t allow anyone keep you from the incredible truth and love of God through Jesus Christ!


Good Government? — Day 141: Bible In One Year 2017

Devotional, Psalm 65, John 12:12-36, 1 Samuel 8, 1 Samuel 9, 1 Samuel 10:1-8


1. Government of God … Psalm 65:1-13

Praise awaits you, our God, in Zion;
to you our vows will be fulfilled.
You who answer prayer,
    to you all people will come.
When we were overwhelmed by sins,
    you forgave our transgressions.
4 Blessed are those you choose
and bring near to live in your courts!
We are filled with the good things of your house,
of your holy temple.
5 You answer us with awesome and righteous deeds,
God our Savior,
the hope of all the ends of the earth
and of the farthest seas,
6 who formed the mountains by your power,
having armed yourself with strength,
7 who stilled the roaring of the seas,
the roaring of their waves,
and the turmoil of the nations.
8 The whole earth is filled with awe at your wonders;
where morning dawns, where evening fades,
you call forth songs of joy.
You care for the land and water it;
    you enrich it abundantly.
The streams of God are filled with water
    to provide the people with grain,
    for so you have ordained it.
10 You drench its furrows and level its ridges;
    you soften it with showers and bless its crops.
11 You crown the year with your bounty,
    and your carts overflow with abundance.
12 The grasslands of the wilderness overflow;
    the hills are clothed with gladness.
13 The meadows are covered with flocks
    and the valleys are mantled with grain;
    they shout for joy and sing.

–Psalm 65

Today’s devotional closed in regards to this reading with:

We don’t live in a society directly governed by God, but through Christ you have a direct relationship with God in your own personal life. You can follow his rule and experience the blessing of God’s presence. This is one of the ways in which you can experience ‘the kingdom of God’ in your life.

–from Day 141: Bible In One Year 2017

2. Government of Jesus … John 12:12-36

Jesus Comes to Jerusalem as King

12 The next day the great crowd that had come for the festival heard that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem. 13 They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting,

“Hosanna!”
“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”
Blessed is the king of Israel!
14 Jesus found a young donkey and sat on it, as it is written:

15 “Do not be afraid, Daughter Zion;
see, your king is coming,
    seated on a donkey’s colt.
16 At first his disciples did not understand all this. Only after Jesus was glorified did they realize that these things had been written about him and that these things had been done to him.

17 Now the crowd that was with him when he called Lazarus from the tomb and raised him from the dead continued to spread the word.18 Many people, because they had heard that he had performed this sign,went out to meet him. 19 So the Pharisees said to one another, “See, this is getting us nowhere. Look how the whole world has gone after him!

Jesus Predicts His Death

20 Now there were some Greeks among those who went up to worship at the festival. 21 They came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida in Galilee, with a request. “Sir,” they said, “we would like to see Jesus.” 22 Philip went to tell Andrew; Andrew and Philip in turn told Jesus.

23 Jesus replied, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.24 Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.25 Anyone who loves their life will lose it, while anyone who hates their life in this world will keep it for eternal life. 26 Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me.

27 “Now my soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour. 28 Father, glorify your name!

Then a voice came from heaven, “I have glorified it, and will glorify it again.” 29 The crowd that was there and heard it said it had thundered; others said an angel had spoken to him.

30 Jesus said, “This voice was for your benefit, not mine. 31 Now is the time for judgment on this world; now the prince of this world will be driven out. 32 And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” 33 He said this to show the kind of death he was going to die.

34 The crowd spoke up, “We have heard from the Law that the Messiah will remain forever, so how can you say, ‘The Son of Man must be lifted up’? Who is this ‘Son of Man’?”

35 Then Jesus told them, “You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. Whoever walks in the dark does not know where they are going.36 Believe in the light while you have the light, so that you may become children of light.” When he had finished speaking, Jesus left and hid himself from them.

–from John 12

Today’s devotional closed in regards to this reading with:

One day Jesus will return as the triumphant King to rule and reign for all eternity. In the meantime, you are called to be light in the darkness. If you live under the leadership of Jesus ‘then the light will be within you, and shining through your lives. You’ll be children of light’ (36, MSG).

–from Day 141: Bible In One Year 2017

3. Government of humans … 1 Samuel 8:1-10:8

Let’s consider what today’s devotional pulls from today’s reading from 1 Samuel…

God had planned that his people would be different from others. He planned a society in which God himself was the King. But Israel wanted to be like everyone else. Direct rule of God only works when the people are wholly devoted to God. If not, it results in the chaos we saw in Judges. It is better to have a human king than no king at all. We might list the preferences like this:

  1. God as King: The situation God wanted – his perfect will
  2. A human king: The situation God allowed – his permissive will
  3. No king: The situation in Judges – chaos

The people of God rejected his rule. The Lord says, ‘they have rejected me as their king’ (8:7). The people ask for a king. They say, ‘appoint a king to lead us, such as all the other nations have’ (v.5).

Samuel warns them that human governments are weak and fallible. Power corrupts. Samuel warns that the king who will rule over them will take some of their families, land, possessions and employees and use them for his own benefit and that of his inner circle (vv.11–16).

In other words, he warns them about the failings and weaknesses of all human government. He also warns them about taxes and ‘extensive bureaucracy’! (v.15, MSG).

In spite of the warning, the people say, ‘We want a king over us’ (v.19). The Lord allowed ‘plan B’: he gave them a king (v.22). Saul is chosen to be the anointed leader of Israel to deliver his people (9:16). The moment Samuel sees Saul, in the blink of an eye he recognises that this was the man who was going to govern the people of God (v.17). Saul, who comes from a humble background (v.21), becomes the anointed king (10:1).

God graciously blesses this new plan. Three remarkable things happen to Saul (which now happen to you and every Christian). First, when he is anointed the Spirit of the Lord comes upon him in power (v.6b). Second, he is ‘transformed’. He becomes a new person (v.6c, see 2 Corinthians 5:17). Third, Samuel tells him, ‘Whatever job you’re given to do, do it. God is with you!’ (v.7, MSG).

This was true of Saul and it is true of you. However down you might feel about a circumstance, however far from God you may feel, however difficult you may find it to pray, whatever doubts you have, the Spirit of the Lord is upon you; you are being transformed into his likeness and God is with you.

–from Day 141: Bible In One Year 2017

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