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May 7, 2008 / beidson

Beyond Bush: Longing for a Better Ruler

It’s a fact that there are a lot of people who want President Bush out of office, for whatever reason.  It’s also a fact that there a lot of people who like President Bush and will support him until the end of his term.  But regardless of our political opinions, there is a sense in which we should all long for the day when President Bush is no longer in power, because, the fact is, no president or world leader will ever deliver all that he has promised and all that we hope for in the world.

Any anger or hope we have toward our rulers (leaders) only display the longing we have inside for the reign of justice and peace, and this longing is intended to point us to Jesus Christ.  All people everywhere are waiting for the restoration of creation, for the reordering of all that has been confused and distorted.  But they will not find the hope and healing they are looking for in any earthly political power, at least, not ultimately.  There is only one Ruler who will bring about the reign of righteousness for which we long.  Though many fight against him and will not submit to his gospel, in the end, they will indeed bow the knee and confess that Jesus is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

As we go to cast our votes this November, we may be glad to see the end of this administration, or we may be frustrated with the candidates we have to choose from, or we may be excited about our options.  But regarless of how we feel, we need to remember that our hope for justice and peace ought to ultimately be placed in one man in particular, the man Jesus Christ.  His coming will bring an end to all earthly powers, and every eye will behold him, the One who is called Faithful and True.  His “foreign policies” will extend to the ends of the universe.  Talk radio will be swallowed up by the broadcast of a better message, one of both righteous judgment and gracious salvation.

In one sense, we ought to be angry about the deficiencies of political authorities because they do not yet reflect the perfect rule of the second Adam but are still perverted by the sin of the first Adam.  But in another sense, our anger ought to be controlled and subdued by a steadfast faith in the future reign of Christ.  In this sense, we look beyond the presidency of George W. Bush to the day when we will finally have the ruler for whom we long, a better ruler than you or I or anybody could ever hope to be.

“The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shined.  You have multiplied the nation; you have increased its joy; they rejoice before you as with joy at the harvest, as they are glad when they divide the spoil.  For the yoke of his burden and the staff for his shoulder, the rod of his oppressor, you have broken as on the day of Midian.  For every boot of the tramping warrior in battle tumult and every garment rolled in blood wil be burned as fuel for the fire.  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 uphold it with justice and righteousness from this time forth and forevermore.  The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.”   –  Isaiah 9:2-7

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