There are currently forty-three sovereign nations in the world where the head of state is a monarch. As of today, Queen Elizabeth II has ruled the United Kingdom for 70 years and 15 days; making her the longest-reigning monarch currently on the throne. (In case you’re counting, that’s 25,583 days.) Not even close to the longest reigning verifiable monarch ever known, who was himself actually a Knight of the British Empire. Sobhuza II reigned in Swaziland for 82 years and 254 days. (That’s a whopping 30,204 days!!)

Sobhuza had to wait a bit before he actually took power. His father passed away suddenly, and Sobhuza was appointed as Swaziland’s monarch at the ripe old age of four months. So, although he was actually the King (or more accurately, the Paramount Chief), his grandmother and uncle oversaw things until he turned twenty-one.

While you may never have heard of Chief Sobhuza, you’ve very likely heard of Queen Elizabeth. But there’s another King who’s currently waiting a bit before the establishment of His Kingdom.

Today’s verse tells us that THE LORD WILL BE KING OVER ALL THE EARTH.

His Kingdom will rule over the earth, and it will be a time of everlasting peace. It will be a time of actual unity in Christ.

There’s already a kingdom on earth called the “Abode of Peace,” but it isn’t quite living up to its name. The formal name for the nation of Brunei is “Brunei Darussalam,” which translates to “Brunei, the Abode of Peace.” It’s not quite living up to its name, though. This tiny sultanate that takes up about one percent of the island of Borneo has been under a constant state of emergency since 1962. That gives the Sultan essentially unlimited power; he is able to enact laws by emergency decree, censor anyone to silence their criticism and limit public debate, suspend elections and even eliminate judicial review.

When the Lord returns, He will establish a kingdom of true peace and joy. For all who will be part of it will be unified under His lordship.

A day is coming — may it be soon — when His feet will once again stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem. When He arrives, the Mount of Olives will be split in two from east to west with half of the mountain moving north and half moving south, forming a massive valley. On that day, living water will flow out from Jerusalem, half of it east to the Dead Sea and half of it west to the Mediterranean Sea. That flow will never cease; it will even continue in the summer, which is currently a time of annual drought.


On that day there will be one Lord, and his name the only name. Jerusalem will be secure. It will forever be inhabited; never again will it be destroyed.

Today the Coming King instructs us to stand firm in one spirit, contending together as one for the faith of the gospel without being frightened in any way by those who oppose us.

What do you think it would look like if we were all standing firm in one spirit? I confess, my initial response to this thought was that it would be very hard to even imagine what it would look like. But then a different answer dawned on me. I realized that we don’t have to imagine it at all! We have the inspired historical account of the book of Acts showing us precisely what it would look like.

On the Feast of Pentecost, God filled all those gathered in the upper room with the Holy Spirit. The day of empowerment for their mission had finally come. And with it, came the equipping Jesus had told them to wait for, a holy boldness to begin proclaiming His message. Those crowded in the upper room were instantly transformed. This band of people, who had been cowering in fear behind locked doors only a few short weeks before, became a unified body of powerful men and women, unafraid of anyone or anything—and who could be stopped by nothing.

Peter stepped forward and began to preach, and three thousand people got saved and were baptized.

But this wasn’t some homogenous group of Orthodox Jews from a single synagogue who were converted, as though THAT might have made it easier for everyone to get along with one another. No, the bible tells us these were “Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs.”

I think it is safe to say that you’d be hard pressed to find a more diverse group with whom to start a new church!

So what was the outcome of this hodge-podge, you may wonder? Did they begin to argue and squabble with one another? Or did they perhaps segregate into different denominations and insist on following their own historical modes of worship? Surely, at least the Jews and the Arabs went in different directions, right? Not hardly. They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. And people were being added to the Kingdom every day!

They were standing firm in one spirit. EVERYBODY shared EVERYTHING. None of them claimed anything was their own. They worshipped together. Together! In spite of the cultural differences between them. They met in one another’s homes, shared meals and fellowship. When they had disagreements, they discussed them and worked out a plan to maintain unity under the Lord’s established authority – the apostles. In the midst of all this, the apostles performed a large number of miracles, signs, and wonders.

I don’t believe those two elements are unrelated. When Jesus prayed for us on the night of His passion, He said that He had given the apostles the glory the Father had given Him, “that they may be one.” This glory would result in greater unity, and THEN the world would know that the Father had sent His Son into the world, and that the Father loves them. As they stood firm in one spirit, they became unstoppable. God continued to perform miracles, signs, and wonders, which attracted people to the message of the gospel of Christ. They stood together in determined unity of the Body of Christ.

And more people were being added to the Kingdom every day!


The early Church became an unstoppable force because they were determined to stand in unity, or as Paul put it, they “stood firm in one spirit.” They recognized that the Body of Christ was called to recognise their oneness, all the while adamantly refusing to allow division.

It is not that they lacked opportunities to allow division to enter. The enemy attacked them with lies, persecution, threats from authority, floggings, dissention from within, and with the all-out attack of the Jewish religious leaders. But no matter what happened, they determined to conduct themselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ, contending as one for the faith that had been placed in their hands and hearts.

Whatever happens, we are called to stand firm and consider that we have been bought with a great price.

Of course things are going to happen! We are people who make mistakes and who have feelings. Stepping on one another’s toes is inevitable. Worse than that, we have an enemy who is out to destroy the work of God. Lots of things are going to happen, and on the surface of it, any number of them might be enough to make one quit…if we were alone.

But we’re not alone! We have the Coming King already within us.

We are not our own. We have not been purchased with some cheap price, like trinkets in a dollar store! Our King purchased the Church with His own blood.

So let us conduct ourselves wisely, because the King is coming. He’s coming to both rule and reign. And His Kingdom will be an everlasting one.

And THAT’s where peace will truly live.


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