Jesus The King In the Old Testament

Ryan Allred (Pastor | Partner Development)

I don’t have many musical bones in my body, and the ones I have are very small. But somehow, as a teenager, I found myself in a choir tasked to sing the Hallelujah Chorus from the 250 year old classic, Handel’s Messiah. My failed piano lessons as a child had taught me to read music, and the notes on the page were daunting. The highs were too high, and the lows too low. As we spent hour after hour practicing, I remember thinking there was no way this was going to sound good. It certainly wasn’t going to sound like this.

You see, Handel’s Messiah, when done right, is a piece fit for majesty. It oozes royalty. You can almost envision a King in all of his glory entering his throne room. It’s powerful. It’s ornate. It almost destroyed my young teenage vocal chords. Most of Handel’s pieces featured a few amazing soloists, but Messiah unleashes the full power of a choir. It certainly took all I had to sing it, and that was the point.

Why all the fuss? What led Handel to push a group of singers to places they didn’t think possible? Because he saw something in the Old Testament that we often miss. Amidst the stories of creation, flood, slavery, deliverance, battles, rebellion and prophets, Handel heard the whispers of a coming King. He overheard the prophet Nathan tell King David that one of David’s descendants would rule over God’s people forever. (2 Samuel 7)

He sat in awe at the feet of the prophet Isaiah as he spoke of one who was to come:

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.
(Isaiah 9:6–7 ESV)

And when he turned to the New Testament, he saw the angel Gabriel announce arrival of this king to a young virgin named Mary:

And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.
(Luke 1:30–33 ESV)

Handel put to music the glorious reality that the entire Old Testament is walk-up music for a promised King. An eternal King. A King who is the descendant of Abraham through whom every nation on earth would be blessed. (Genesis 12:3) A King who causes fear in lesser kings, but blesses those who take refuge in him. (Psalm 2) A Righteous Branch who will exude wisdom, justice, and righteousness. (Jeremiah 23:5)

Quite simply, a King who is due the absolute best we can muster. And then some.

And He shall reign forever and ever,
King of Kings, and Lord of Lords.

Post Series: Advent 2015

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  1. Pingback: Jesus The King: Applying It To Life – Part 1 | RADIUS Church

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