Government; March 10, 2023

1 Kings 10:9 “Praise be to the Lord your God, who has delighted in you and placed you on the throne of Israel. Because of the Lord’s eternal love for Israel, he has made you king, to maintain justice and righteousness.”

The story of the queen of Sheba has been dearly loved by many down through the centuries because it seems so dramatic and even romantic, since there is a strong tradition that “all that she desired” (verse 13) included Solomon’s DNA. My own impression is that the gifts included a copy of the Torah, since modern Ethiopian Jews trace their roots to this visit. That also would explain why the Ethiopian eunuch would have gone to Jerusalem to worship, thus encountering Philip on his return trip. (Acts 8:26-40) The interesting thing about the story here is that what inspired faith in the queen of Sheba was the quality of Solomon’s government. As a ruler herself she knew that good government isn’t an easy thing to pull off, and seeing that in Israel totally blew her mind. (verses 4-5) The thing is, good government is a gift from God. That’s why Paul told us to pray for those in government. (1 Timothy 2:1-2) Without good government everyone suffers, as is being amply demonstrated in many places around the world. Good government, as everything else, requires a foundation. The queen of Sheba recognized that the foundation of Solomon’s government was Yahweh, and she wanted that foundation for her own country. The problems that have plagued the US for the past several decades are rooted in the concerted effort to remove God from the foundation. Thankfully a backlash seems to have kicked in, politically and more importantly, spiritually. Current reports of revival spreading across the nation are encouraging indeed, as are the exposures of all the corruption that had so deeply infested the government. Parents standing up for their children, local governments being transformed, it’s quite exciting. However, we have got to remember that relying on people and human wisdom will get us back into the same mess, or worse. The only solid foundation, for good government or anything else, is our Creator, and we must never forget that.

I live in Japan, which has never claimed to be a Christian nation, but I still pray for the leaders. It was encouraging when a pastor was recently elected to the Upper House of the Diet, and reports are that he has been acting as a chaplain to other Diet members. Since my roots are in the US, I certainly pray for America as well. From about 20 years ago I have been increasingly aware of the American situation, helped greatly by the Internet, and my prayers have intensified. Even at this distance I’ve got to remember that God is always the only answer, and pray for His name to be acknowledged as holy and His rule and reign be established as His will is done. I can and do get specific about various situations, but I can’t begin to know all the details, much less have the wisdom to straighten it all out. However, I know the One who is omniscient, omnipotent, and loving, and I can and do rejoice in Him.

Father, thank You for this reminder. Thank You for Your plans that are indeed playing out all over the globe. We see much tragedy because of the devil’s schemes and human sin, but You are greater than it all, and You already have the final outcome in place. Thank You for the assurance that You don’t desire the suffering, and that in the end you will wipe away every tear. (Revelation 7:17, 21:4) Thank You. Hallelujah!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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