5 signs Jesus is your consultant and not your King

After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came to Jerusalem and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” When King Herod heard this he was disturbed. (Matthew 2:1-3)

Those last words are one of the great understatements in all of Scripture. Herod was more than “disturbed” by the news of Jesus. He was apoplectic because this new “king of the Jews” represented a direct threat to his throne.

Herod knew there can only be one king in a kingdom. Either you are on the throne or someone else is. There is no in-between—no compromise whatsoever. Which is why, after hearing of this threat to his career, Herod unleashed one of the most grotesque campaigns of violence in history (see Matthew 2:16). 

But Herod isn’t the only king we see in today’s passage. We’re also introduced to the Magi—the “three kings of Orient are” we sing about every Christmas. While Herod responds to Jesus the King with ruthless violence, the Magi display the polar opposite response: total and complete worship (see Matthew 2:11).

Two sets of kings. Two totally different responses. 

The question, of course, is how do you and I respond to the newborn king? Certainly not like Herod. But I’m not sure we respond like the Magi either. Our temptation is to profess faith in Christ but not make him the true Lord of our lives. We want Jesus as a consultant, but not really as king. Because if he is king, then you and I are no longer our own.

How do you know if Jesus is your consultant at work instead of your king? I could list dozens of signs, but here are just five I think you and I struggle with the most:

  1. You ask Jesus to approve your plans, rather than guide your imagination and planning from the get-go
  2. You rarely show allegiance to your King and talk openly about your faith with your co-workers
  3. You consult Google and industry gurus more than God’s Word and his Holy Spirit when making hard decisions
  4. You embellish the truth about how well things are going at work for fear of bruising your pride if you were obedient to God’s call to truthfulness
  5. You’d rather be seen as tolerant and loving than holy and loyal to your King

Feeling convicted? Welcome to the club. Here’s the good news: You and I have a king who “is faithful and just to forgive” when we try to stage a coup against his kingship (see 1 John 1:9). Thank him for his forgiveness today! And may his grace and mercy lead us to be even more intentional about keeping the One True King as the sole occupier of the throne of our lives and work. 


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