I’ve been in a ministry where people work on an international level and at times find themselves face to face with kings, rulers and ministers of the government. It is not an easy task to approach royalty as there is a high degree of etiquette. For example when meeting the Queen of England, after greeting her you would never say, “pleased to meet you” or “It was on honor to meet you.” To do so is offensive as it is implied and assumed that it is always an honor and a pleasure to meet the queen. To dine with royalty, protocol is prerequisite.
This is nothing new since the beginning of time. In Biblical history it was forbidden for someone to be sad in the king’s presence. When you approached the king, it wasn’t about you and your problems, it was about the king. You were to serve him first and foremost.
We read about in Esther how she was a beautiful woman and was taken so that she might in the selection pool for the role of Queen. The women had once chance with the king and upon that one encounter, he decided whether she would be queen or spend the rest of her days in the quarters of the concubines. But before she was to go before the king, she could go into the royal jewel house and choose any and every piece jewelry she wanted. Whatever she took, she could carry with her after her encounter with the king.
Naturally I’m sure the women loaded themselves up. This was the back-up plan–their ‘insurance’ if the king was somehow dissatisfied with them. But Esther was not that way. She went to the head eunuch and asked what would please the king. Unlike the others, she knew that to approach royalty was not about what would please her, but what would please the King. Needless to say, she won the position of Queen.
The wise men give us an indication of how to approach a King. All their lives they had studied the stars and gained wisdom from the skies. They had learned to listen to the voice of the Lord and obey. Perhaps this is something they had honed for generations. And when it came town, the stars pointed to a king, in Bethlehem.
“…the star they had seen in the east went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. In coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshipped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, and of incense and of myrrh.” (Mt 2:10-11)
When the magi came into contact with the king, they gave him highest honor. Then the presented to open the very best of gifts that they had. Even though the king was a baby it mattered nothing. What mattered was this baby was a king, and they gave him their deepest and highest honor. They knew how to approach a king.
But what about the King of Kings? The Almighty God of Heaven. How are we to approach him? So often we approach him like those of history have approached their kings. What is on our minds is what we want and what we need, even if those needs are legitimate.
But is there a better way to approach the King? If the kings of the earth require respect to be in their presence, do we treat God any less? What would it look like to approach Him with the respect and honor he deserves? What would it look like if we approached him looking to please Him and bring Him happiness? How would I even posture myself?
He is the King, but do respect Him as such?
Mt 2:1-18 (12/17)
Mt 2:19-3:12 (12/18)