Jesus Called Himself “The King of Kings and Lord of Lords”

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In John’s vision of the victorious Christ the Lord had “… on his garment and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS” (Rev. 19:16). John had earlier declared that ten kings who were empowered by and in league with the beast would make war against the Lamb (Christ), but the Lamb would overcome them, “for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings” (Rev. 17:14). Yet earlier John had declared Jesus to be “the ruler of the kings of the earth” (Rev. 1:5). Paul used similar terminology, describing Christ as “the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords” (I Tim. 6:15). These titles are fraught with some weighty implications.

The most obvious and immediate implication of Christ’s being “King of Kings and Lord of Lords” is that of his universal sovereignty. If one is over all other kings and rulers, he is also over all of the subjects of all other kings and rulers. This, of course, includes all men on the face of the earth in every generation since He came. This is not only taught implicitly in the New Testament, but explicitly as well. God gave His Son authority over all flesh” (John 17:2) Christ was given “all authority…in heaven and on earth” (Mat. 28:18). Peter preached that Christ was “Lord of all” (Acts 10:36) and Paul wrote that He was “over all” (Rom. 9:5). The only way one can deny the sovereignty of the Son of God over all men is to deny the plain meaning of simple, ordinary words used by the Holy Spirit.

The universal sovereignty of Christ implies that all men are accountable, amenable, to His law, His will, His word. How does any ruler rule except through his law? This is the means by which the Lord of heaven and earth exercises His authority over men. The Bible also refers to the law of Christ as His “covenant” (Jer.31:33).  His “testament” (Heb 9:15–17), His and the Father’s “will” (10:9–10). Thus, if all men are subject (in the sense of being accountable) to Christ, all men are subject or accountable to His will, His law, His covenant.

This important fact is also seen in the great commission of Christ. His gospel (which is His will, His testament, His word, His covenant, His law) was ordered preached “to the whole creation (Mark 16:15). Paul stated a principle that applies to any system of law, including the law of Christ: “What things soever the law saith, it speaketh to them that are under the law” (Rom 3:19). Since the gospel (i.e., the covenant, the law) of Christ was addressed to all men, it follows that all men are accountable to it. Again, if one denies this, he must deny the meaning of simple, ordinary words employed by the Holy Spirit which convey this truth.

In spite of the plainness with which the universal sovereignty of Christ is taught in the New Testament, there are those who deny this doctrine, alleging that alien sinners are not accountable to the covenant of Christ. This is no innocent matter. If one adopts this fatal fallacy, he will be forced to adopt numerous additional false doctrines in an effort to remain consistent with his fundamental false premise.

Some of the grave consequences of denying that Christ is over all and that He exercises His authority through the New Testament are as follows:

  1. Two limited systems of spiritual law exist instead of the one universal Law/Gospel of Christ (i.e., aliens are accountable only to a “law in the heart” or a “great moral law” but only saints are accountable to the Covenant-Gospel-Law of Christ).
  2. The Gospel/Covenant of Christ is not universal as Mark 16:15–16 (and many other passages) teaches.
  3. Alien sinners who have lived since the cross will not be judged by the Word/Gospel/ Covenant of Christ, but by the mythical “law in the heart”/“great moral law,” in spite of Jesus’ warning to the contrary (John 12:48).
  4. Baptism is a command only for Christians (i.e., baptism is a command of the universal Covenant/Law of Christ, but aliens are not accountable to that Covenant/Law).
  5. Universal damnation is implied (i.e., the alien sinner is not saved until he obeys the Covenant/Law of Christ, but he is not accountable to that Covenant/Law until he obeys it).
  6. If preached to alien sinners this doctrine would discourage them from obeying the Law of Christ because it denies that they are answerable to it.

May we all honor Christ as “King of kings and Lord of lords” and seek to get all men to do the same.

Note: I wrote this MS for and it was published in the October 1988 edition of Spiritual Sword, ed. Thomas B. Warren.]

Attribution: From; Dub McClish, owner and administrator.






Author: Dub McClish

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