Author: Randy Sheets
“Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”- Lord Acton
Over two dozen of the proverbs address the conduct of the king (or rulers in general). This makes sense-Solomon was the author of most of the proverbs, Hezekiah copied many of them and some king named Lemuel came along and contributed some of the latter proverbs and we don’t even know who he is! Add to that the number of proverbs addressed to the conduct of sons and we see a picture of kings trying to impart wisdom to their offspring.
This is especially true in the 29th chapter of Proverbs. Five of the verses refer to a king or ruler and others suggest the same. With our recent study of the Old Testament we can see numerous examples of kings and rulers-from Pharaoh to Cyrus-who believed themselves to be essentially a god and therefore their decisions were not questioned. In the New Testament we have Herod and even Felix who wanted a bribe from Paul (Acts 24:26). Example after example of rulers who felt themselves to be accountable to no one-ruling unchecked in their power-until their thrones were taken away.
Israel also had more bad kings than good kings and even the good kings were prone to do sinful things. Even though they should have known they were ultimately accountable to God and in most instances God advised them through prophets, they still stiffened their necks and rebelled. Because they did not listen to the wise counsel of the prophets and the proverbs their thrones were also taken away from them by God.
Being the subjects of these kings proved to be difficult at best. But we now serve a Holy King whose throne is established by justice, equity, and righteousness (Psalms 99:4,5). That’s why His throne will endure forever. How truly blessed we are to be citizens of His kingdom-now and forever. He’s a king who doesn’t just think He is a god-He is God!
6 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.
7 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 to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore.
The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this. (ESV)