Missiology Through Scripture – Psalm 72:11

“May all kings fall down before him, all nations serve him!” – Psalm 72:11

Christ has not come to serve only the lofty, but also the lowly. Every king and every leader is put in place by God, and is also a servant of the Lord. We don’t have to like our leaders, nor do we have to vote for them. However, every civil leader is appointed by God for his purpose. Even if that leader is not a disciple of Christ, he is subservient to our Lord. The world leaders and the governments they serve will all bow down before Yahweh.

There is nobody worthy of worship save Christ. The world’s monarchs and elected officials seek praise and adoration. None stands above God. Only to Christ will reverence be given in the end. No man is worthy to be blindly followed. Jesus is. Tertullian wrote, “To Christ alone was this given; whilst Solomon reigned over only the moderately-sized kingdom of Judah. ‘Yea, all kings shall fall down before Him.’ Whom, indeed, shall they all thus worship, except Christ? ‘All nations shall serve Him.’ To whom shall all thus do homage, but Christ?”[1] The governments of every tribe and every nation fulfills God’s will and does his bidding. No government need acknowledge Christ as king for him to be king. He is served by their actions whether those governments submit to him or not.

The nations and their governors serve our God not because of force or rule of law. The governments submit to God because he is completely sovereign. The psalmist desires a willful submission to Christ by the nations, but the reality is God is infinite and eternal and is the one true ruler of our lives and souls. Our missionaries obey the foreign governments in order to introduce their citizens to the one true leader.

 

[1] Tertullian, “The Five Books against Marcion,” in Latin Christianity: Its Founder, Tertullian, ed. Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe, trans. Peter Holmes, vol. 3, The Ante-Nicene Fathers (Buffalo, NY: Christian Literature Company, 1885), 449.