Lessons From History 3 – A Question of Kingship.

This year marks the 700th anniversary of the battle of Bannockburn in 1314. This battle is seen as the decisive action of the Scottish War of Independence yet the peace treaty that brought an end to the war was signed in 1328! What took it so long. Simple, the English, or rather their Plantagenet monarchs, refused to recognise the kingship of Robert 1, King of Scots, aka Robert the Bruce. Initially the problem was to accept the reality of the facts on the ground. Even when Edward 11 was murdered by his own subjects and replaced by his son, Edward 111, and most of the English nobility were quite happy for peace, especially those who had lands in the North of England that were subject to Scottish raids, there was reluctance to sue for peace. Tentative negotiations met with a problem, however, because the English addressed their “peace proposals” to Robert the Bruce, “who claims to be the king of Scotland.” The Scots replied that they had to acknowledge that King Robert was THE King of Scotland and that there could no peace otherwise. This resulted in a long drawn out process. Edward 111 only agreed to the peace treaty in the end because of the weakness of his position.

When it comes to Jesus of Nazareth, do you recognise his kingship? When Pilate wrote the charge for the crucifixion it said “Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews,” Jesus’ enemies objected to it and wanted to change it to that he only “claimed” to be their King. We may say that he was just a good man, a sage, a prophet or whatever. Unless we acknowledge the Kingship of Christ how can we be truly saved? True, many a sinner has started out on his spiritual journey without acknowledging it, but if they fall short of saying “Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain,” as they progress then we should query any profession of faith that they might make. We have admit the weakness of our position as sinners, our need for a Saviour. But if Jesus was just a man and not the Son of God then his death would have been for nothing. There are those who would see Jesus as a person a nice guy who was all love and tolerance and would not offend anybody. But they do not see Him as a person who has real authority over them. Basically they see Him as somebody who is a good example that they can ignore without any consequences. Well, he certainly offending the money-changers when He cleansed the Temple.The Jesus of the Book of Revelation is far from this view:- “I saw heaven standing open and there before me was a white horse, whose rider is called Faithful and True. With justice he judges and makes war. His eyes are like blazing fire, and on his head are many crowns. He has a name on him that nobody knows but himself. He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and His name is the Word of God. . . Out of his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, “He will rule them with an iron sceptre.”” Revelation chapter 19 verses 11-5. Do you recognise Him as your King?
The sad thing historically was that after the peace treaty was signed in 1328 King Robert died the following year leaving the kingdom in the hands of his 5 year old son, David 11, and within a few short years war had broken out again. The question has to be asked as to whether Edward 111 really wanted a true peace. Non-believers are often urged to say “the sinner’s prayer”, but for it to be effective, surely the words have to be genuinely meant by the person. There is the danger that in order to add to the number of converts those engaged in evangelism get people to say the prayer before they are ready to genuinely make such a commitment. This may bring a false sense of peace that leads to a disillusion with God and the church that will lead a hostile attitude to God and Christian things. This may leave them in a worse place as to actual salvation than they were before.
David Rose 2014.

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About davidgrose

I am a Bible believing Christian, brought up in the Brethren Movement, and now find myself associating with charismatics even though I do not always agree with them. I am in full-time employment. I have interests in history and photography amongst others.
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