Unfortunately, many people settle for merely surviving when God offers to empower them to thrive. One essential step in the divine pathway leading to thriving is responding appropriately to the lordship of Christ. The 17th Century leader, theologian, and academic John Owen wrote, “We have no power from God unless we live in the persuasion that we have none of our own.” In other words, surrender to God with all one’s mind, body, and soul is a prerequisite to receiving spiritual power. In a very real sense, we are speaking of God as Lord. The Lordship of Christ in our lives is used by God to help us thrive.
Throughout the Bible, there are various Hebrew, and Greek words rendered lord. However, two words rise above the rest as the most abundantly used. In Hebrew, the word is Yahweh. This is the name God revealed Himself by to the ancient Hebrews. It refers to “the self-existent, eternal God.” This title for God was held so sacred by the Jews that is was never pronounced except by the high priest on the great Day of Atonement, when he entered into the most holy place.
In Greek, the word is Kyrios. Kyrios is used throughout the Greek translation of the Old Testament in place of Yahweh. It is also found throughout the Greek New Testament. After Easter, one of the most important Old Testament texts to be applied to the Risen One Jesus Christ was Psalm 110:1: “The Lord says to my Lord: ‘Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool.’” Here the word “Lord” is used both for God and for the messianic king (Acts 2:34). The application of this text to Jesus meant that the title, ‘my Lord,’ addressed to Him during His earthly life in recognition of his unusual authority, was upgraded as a messianic address. In other words, Jesus is indeed Lord God.
Lordship, when speaking of God, is more than a title. It is expressed by Christ’s followers in their posture. Let me illustrate it this way. When I was growing up, my Dad taught me that when I shook someone’s hand, I needed to look them in the eye. It was a sign of respect and confidence. However, this is not the way we are to show “respect” to God. Lordship posture is lying prostrate before God showing complete trust and the honor due Him. It is our acknowledgment that Jesus is Lord that serves as the foundation of a life that thrives.
In Jeremiah 23:1-6, we read about the coming king. This king is no other than Jesus Christ. In verse 1-2, false shepherds are shown to contrast with this coming king, Jesus, who is the true shepherd. Verse 3-4 speaks of the people of God being restored. The believer discovers this blessing when those once far from God enter into His salvation and rest through Christ. Then we read in Jeremiah 23:6: “this is the name by which he will be called: ‘the Lord is our righteousness.’” We discover that the King to come is the “Lord” who is “our righteousness.”
Jesus is the king who has come. In Him, we have been offered His righteousness. Imputed is a form of the word imputation that means to designate, and action as reckoned or given to a person. In other words, the righteousness of Jesus is given to us when we believe to make us right with God. The work of Jesus in His people is not only to clean the stain of sin. The perfect obedience and righteousness of Jesus are ours in Him. Think of it this way. Jesus as our righteousness does not merely mean that He reflects the righteousness of God but that He will impart His people His righteousness, making it their very own. The Apostle Paul had this in mind when he spoke of “Jesus Christ” “our righteousness” in the New Testament (see: 1 Cor 1:30 & 2 Cor 5:21).
The power we have to thrive is not something we have within ourselves. Such power only comes from God and is received only when we acknowledge Jesus as Lord. The Lordship of Christ in our lives is used by God to help us thrive.
So, I ask you, “What is your posture in approaching Christ?” Do you try to avoid Him? Do you show respect, but keep an eye on Him like a good handshake? Or, are you all in, laying prostrate demonstrating trust and acceptance as Him as your righteousness? Will you allow Jesus our righteousness to make you thrive? If you say yes, be prepared to not merely survive, but thrive. Soli Deo Gloria (Glory to God Alone)!