Christ Crowned Lord Of All
By Lois J. Stucky
In Revelation 19:11-13 we read of a grand climax in John’s vision, when One comes forth from heaven on a white horse. The One is called Faithful and True. "His name is called ‘The Word of God’"…and "on His head were many crowns." In his commentary, Albert Barnes suggests "‘many crowns’ might be indicative of His universal reign…. Perhaps the various diadems worn by kings were in some way wreathed into one." The Jamieson, Fausset and Brown Commentary says the word for "crowns" means "not merely garlands of victory, but royal crowns, as King of kings."
Whatever the full meaning is, we cannot doubt that this One so crowned is the Lord Jesus Christ. He has "all power" or "all authority" according to Matthew 28:18. He is the One crucified at Calvary for the sins of all kindreds and tongues and peoples and nations (Rev. 5:9). He is worthy to receive "power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing" (Rev. 5:12). "Crown Him with many crowns!" the songwriter exclaims. Exalt the sinless Lamb of God who is altogether worthy of worship "for ever and ever"! (Rev. 5:13).
It is almost beyond human comprehension that this glorious and eternal One, this King of kings, is also the meek and lowly Savior in whom the soul of the believer finds rest and peace and comfort. He came to our hearts when they were heavy with deep conviction of sin and were greatly yearning for forgiveness and peace with God. He came with a blessed assurance that through His blood shed at Calvary, we have forgiveness of sins as we confess them, and through that blood we are cleansed from all sin (1 John 1:7). In compassion for us, He brought peace to our guilt-ridden hearts and sweet fellowship with Himself. He promised to never leave nor forsake us, and He took away the fear of death by His assurance that through faith in Him we have eternal life (John 3:16).
Bowing lowly at His feet, we can but be amazed at this wonderful salvation God has provided for us. Might we ever realize its matchless worth. Has not God done for us that which is above all we could ask or think? This kingly Lord Jesus even calls us "friends" if we do whatever He commands us, the Friend of all friends, who laid down His life for us (John 15:13-15).
J. Hudson Taylor, enthralled by all that we have in our Lord Jesus, writes that while the Bible speaks of Christ being the vine and we the branches, he envisions Christ as also the soil in which the vine is planted and rooted, and Christ as the air about it, the sun that shines on it, and the rain that waters it. "Christ is all and in all" (Col. 3:11), to borrow from another context.
How favored and nourished is that branch! Outside of that safe abiding place is an atmosphere that is damaging and even deadly. It might be compared to the natural and spiritual atmospheres in this day. The natural is being disturbed, perhaps damaged. For instance, some accuse the industrial nations of polluting the air by emissions from factories and vehicles to the extent that the whole world is being adversely affected by global warming. Also, we are told that some farmers are treating more of the weeds in their fields nowadays by chemicals than by cultivating, and this is causing some to fear that the chemicals seeping down into the underground water supply will in time contaminate our food and water supply.
Unquestionably, the spiritual atmosphere is being defiled. Iniquity is abounding, as Scripture tells us it will be in the last days (Matt. 24:14). The devil and his hosts are very active in going about to steal and to kill and to destroy. Pitfalls are many and varied. There are deceptions galore to draw us away from the truths of God’s Word. But praise God, if we are abiding in Christ, we are encased as it were, in Him: "Ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God" (Col. 3:3). "Precious hiding place…in the shelter of His love…"
We are promised our Lord’s intercessions for us to be kept from the evil one (John 17:15). Our part is to abide in Christ and to have His Word abiding in us, to obey that Word, to walk in the Spirit, to pray always. We belong to a victorious Savior who triumphed over the powers of darkness by the cross (Col. 2:15). We dare never presume nor trust in our own strength, but hidden with Christ in God, we are kept from the sin pollutions of this day. God help us one and all to walk humbly, obediently, and in full dependence upon His keeping power, that He be glorified in us and through us. "…kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation." Kept "to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you" (1 Pet. 1:4-5).
Kept for Heavenly Purposes
The great missionary heart of A. B. Simpson, as he writes in his article on page 5, challenges us to ever remember that Christ redeems us and keeps us for the blessed privilege of helping in one way or another, as He directs us individually, to go into all the world with the Gospel. This late hour is full of opportunities for us to take part in God’s ingathering of souls, and in building up the Church in preparation for the return of our Lord Jesus Christ. Here at Herald of His Coming we receive various missionary publications. How can we help but rejoice with Heaven as we read of numbers of souls who are hearing for the first time the blessed story of God’s redemption through Jesus Christ, and of those whose hungering hearts respond to the message! But the work is far from finished.
Perhaps you feel as do we at Herald of His Coming, that in these last crucial hours of harvest, we must have more of God’s love for lost souls shed abroad in our hearts. We must have more of the Holy Spirit’s power in our witness and more holy zeal to seek out and carry through on opportunities on our very doorstep as well as through the printed page. Will you please pray for us to that end?
And might we all pray one for the others as fellow readers of Herald of His Coming. Each of us has unique opportunities right at hand as well as far off. These are God-given, and if we are not careful, we fail to grasp them in time and they are forever lost. We may need to be stirred out of our lethargy, out of the "comfort zone" that we hear much about today. If we rouse ourselves and take that first step for God, the enemy Satan will be right there to interfere with our intentions in one way or another. Let us ask and trust God to empower us in our witnessing for Him.
Our prayer lives too, may need fresh empowerment from God. How the enemy fights prayer! He knows well the effectiveness of the fervent prayers of the righteous. Let us hold firmly to our place "in Christ," who is "far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named" (Eph. 2:21). Christ is victor over all the powers of darkness, and in Him we have victory also. Draw upon the Holy Spirit who is given to help us in prayer (Rom. 8:26).
As together we seek the Lord for outpourings of the Spirit upon one another, hearts can be set aflame in the uttermost parts of the earth to go in powerful witness to gather in souls beyond the reach of most of us. In a recent email letter, the writer requests prayer for his field of labor among a people so backward that leaves are their only clothing. Such Herald readers in the harvest field for the Lord deserve our supporting prayers. The enemy Satan is deeply entrenched in some areas and strenuously opposes the labors of God’s servants. The excerpt on page twelve from the letter from Zimbabwe gives a glimpse of the spiritual darkness some harvesters encounter. Supporting prayers are effectual as they bravely and sacrificially press on for Jesus’ sake.
A reader from Trinidad wrote us: "I want to join you in the work that you are doing at Herald of His Coming because I believe this stirring up is so desperately needed in my own life and in the Church, generally…." Will you, too, join your prayers and gifts with us to strive in this urgent hour to do for God what one of us could not do alone? For the sake of our dear Lord and Savior who died for whosoever hears and believes, might God grant us grace and strength to do His bidding so clearly set forth in His Word, to go and make disciples of all nations, teaching them all that He has given us in His Word (Matt. 28:19-20).