The Royal Standard
By Hal Lindsey
In Britain, they would call me a “republican.” That’s not a reference to the Republican Party in the United States, but to a person who prefers a republican form of government over a monarchy. That feeling is common among Americans. Most of us here don’t believe a person should rule others just because he or she had the correct mother or father.
Even in the United Kingdom, the King doesn’t really rule. Over the centuries, that nation slowly changed into a “parliamentary democracy.” The king or queen is still immensely important — still the head of state — but that importance is now largely symbolic.
Yet, with the passing of Queen Elizabeth II, even republicans had to be moved at what we saw. Before us stood a grand display of the old and awesome magnificence of monarchy. As a Christian, it reminded me that a real Monarch is coming. Isaiah 9:6 says, “The government will rest on His shoulders” (NASB). The next verse says, “There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace, On the throne of David and over his kingdom, To establish it and to uphold it with justice and righteousness From then on and forevermore.”
America’s founding fathers based our constitution on a biblical understanding of human nature. We are a fallen version of God’s original human design. We have taken on a sin nature. Because the founders believed this, they refused to place too much power in any one person. That’s why they filled the constitution with checks and balances.
But what if you could have a King who is filled with perfect love, acts with perfect justice, and has a perfect understanding of all things? What if that King could never die nor leave the throne to evil heirs? If a perfect leader could be found, a government resting on His shoulders would be the perfect form of government. That’s Jesus. Perfect in every way.
Until He takes charge, I prefer our constitutional republic over monarchy when it comes to human government. But even now, I have a King. I am His subject. My great honor is that I am allowed to stand in His presence and to serve Him.
If you’ve ever visited one of the royal palaces, you were probably told that when the Queen (now the King) is in residence, a flag called the Royal Standard is flown. We used to sing a little song about that called “Joy is the Flag.” As far as I can tell, the author is unknown. His or her idea was that we Christians have a royal standard that flies over us when King Jesus resides within. It says, “Joy is the flag flown high from the castle of my heart, for the King is in residence there.”
If you pay attention to the news, you are well aware of problems inundating the human race. But no matter how much news you consume, your awareness remains incomplete. The wave of bad news is so intense right now that no one can keep up. Humanity faces devastating crises on all sides. So how are you supposed to have joy in the face of all that?
Your joy as a Christian is not based on your circumstances. It is based on the identity and perfection of your King. His presence is your source of joy. You know the King of kings — the Lord of the universe — and you know Him personally. He is a Friend closer than a brother. If you don’t know Him, you can. He knocks at the door of every heart, and when we let Him in, joy follows.
This doesn’t mean you will never experience sadness or loss as a Christian. But it does mean that even in the darkest hour, His light shines. James 1:2 explains the Christian attitude toward the suffering of trials. It says, “Consider it all joy!” No matter what you face, the King of kings resides within you, lovingly watches over you, and faces those trials with you.