The Favour of the King
“As messengers of death is the king’s wrath, but a wise man will appease it. In the light of the king’s face is life, and his favour is like a cloud of the latter rain.”
(Proverbs 16:14-15 NKJV UK)
Like many Americans, I enjoy keeping up with the British royals. The birth of the newest prince last July was exciting, not only because of the happiness of the young parents, but also because of all the history behind Prince George.
As I’ve read about kings and their courts and watched historical television shows and movies, I’ve noticed not only does the head that wears the crown lie uneasy (Henry IV, Shakespeare), but so did the heads of many in close proximity to the king. Enjoying his favours one day and on the chopping bloc the next. In times past kings arbitrarily decided whether or not someone pleased them. They often used people to further their own agenda. The court and sometimes the whole country held their collective breath when a king died, as they didn’t know if they were better off with the tyrant they knew or the one to come.
It’s easy to see why legalism came about and why we confuse God’s nature with characteristics of leaders, fathers and others in authority. To those living under a monarchy the king was almost on the same level as God. What he said was law and everyone was at his mercy, even if they thought they were too far away to be noticed.
When we misunderstand who God is, we might think he also makes arbitrary laws, that we are at the mercy of his wrath and, if we stay far enough away, we can fly under the radar. After all, he’s probably too busy to worry about everyone. He’s way off in heaven somewhere. Or we think that if we can just stay in his good graces, we’ll be safe. For many, it’s all about gaining his favour by being good enough.
But God isn’t like human kings. He rules the universe with love, mercy and grace. He’s not arbitrary in any way and doesn’t play games with our lives. He values and respects us as the children he created. He doesn’t decide who lives and who dies on a whim, but allows us to live out our lives and make our own choices for better or for worse.
None of us, no matter what choices we make, has to worry about whether or not we are in the good graces of our King Jesus. We live in God’s grace—constant, loving and complete. He doesn’t put limits on his grace. He doesn’t give it one day and take it away the next. We don’t have to earn it. Grace is always available, always abundant and unconditional, just like God’s love. Under the love and care of our King, our heads can rest easy on our pillows, for we always live in his good grace.
Merciful Father, we thank you that you are not like us—often vengeful, unforgiving, and full of anger. Your grace is constant and complete. Thank you for your grace. In Jesus’ name we pray.
Study by Tammy Tkach
*Adapted from Christian Odyssey, Autumn 2013
About the Author:
Tammy Tkach is the wife of Grace Communion International (the Denominational name of The Worldwide Church of God UK) President, Joseph Tkach, and resides in California, USA. Tammy is GCI Women’s Ministry Support Co-Ordinator and editor of Connections, an ezine for women in ministry. Check out Tammy’s blog at www.ttkach.wordpress.com
You are welcome to attend one of our local Church congregations located throughout the UK. For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.wcg.org.uk under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.