I just finished teaching a series on the Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6/Luke 11). My last lesson featured the words of the doxology that finishes off that section of scripture: “For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory for ever more. Amen”
(Now I realize that sentence does not appear in some translations like the NIV and ESV. But it is included in the KJV, NKJV and with brackets in the NASB. The issue is its absence in later manuscripts. But since Matthew 6 closely aligns with other passages of scripture [like I Chronicles 29:11], it is valuable to consider its words.)
We live in a world that is full of people in significant positions who dearly crave the limelight and love to see themselves as the most powerful person in the room (country, company, extended family and so on).
With a little bit of influence, a few praises and an accolade or two and you and I might struggle with the same thing!
Dealing with pride and its accompanying tributes can be a full time job. So, I read this story with great interest. It seems that a King named Canute ruled over Denmark, Norway and England about 1000 years ago. “He was a wise ruler and he worked diligently to make the lives of his subjects better.”
As is often the case, he was surrounded by those who sought to gain influence and prominence with him. And he grew tired of their continual flattery and determined to put an end to it.
He ordered that his throne be carried out to the seashore and gathered his courtiers about it. The king commanded the tide not to come in. Yet soon the waters were lapping around his legs, as the tide did not heed him.
According to one historians’ account, King Canute rose up from his throne and said, “Let all men know how empty and worthless is the power of kings, for there is none worthy of the name, but He whom heaven, earth and sea obey by eternal laws.” (Taken from Ministry 127 illustrations.)
Matthew clearly states that we are to pray: “…for thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory…” God is not going to relinquish His power to anyone, not to the head of a family, a company or a country.
So next time you are at the beach, and watching the waves lap up on the shore, take a few minutes and remind yourself of who holds that power. And give Him the glory!