Do you know this lady? What’s her name? Elizabeth. Her second name? Alexandra. Her third name? Mary. And her family name? Windsor. Hands up if you have ever seen Her on TV? I think that’s everyone! Hands up if you’ve written to her?
Hands up if you received a reply? Hands up if you have met Her Majesty in person? Hands up if you have ever spoken to her? Hands up if you have ever been invited to tea? Dinner? Breakfast? Hands up if you have ever been i
nvited to stay with her? Hands up if you have been on holiday with her? Hands up if you are related to her? No one? Who wants to be the Queen? [Queen]
How could you become a member of the Royal Family? By birth. By royal bloodline. [3 Helpers] How else? By marriage. If you married a member of the Royal Family [2 Helpers]. Any other way? By adoption – you could be chosen to become her sonor daughter. Anyone like to be adopted into the Royal Family? [Helper] These are the three ways you could be related to Her Majesty. Based on our survey today, we all seem to know about her Majesty, but very few, if anyone, can actually say, “I know her personally”. And as far as we know, no one here is related to her. She
is a very very important person, and very difficult to contact unless she takes the initiative. Do you have her mobile number or email address? We aren’t surprised if she doesn’t phone or invite us to tea, even though she only lives a few miles away in Windsor. We aren’t disappointed if she doesn’t invite us to join her family or share her inheritance. Do you know Queen Elizabeth’s full title?
The Royal Titles Act of 1953, asserts her title: “Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and of Her other Realms and Territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith.”
Did you notice what comes first and last? Her majesty only serves by the grace of God – by God’s free, unmerited, sovereign, mercy. And her role? Defence of the Faith!
This was symbolized at her coronation in June 1953. Who placed the crown on her head? The Archbishop of Canterbury! Why? Because for the last 900 years the Kings and Queens of England have been crowned in a church, Westminster Abbey. It is a sign that our King or Queen serves under the authority of Jesus. And just to make that crystal clear, what is at the top, around and at the centre of the royal crown? The cross of Jesus. Her crown reminds everyone that she rules under the authority of Almighty God. She is a servant of the Lord Jesus who is King of Kings. And the Lord has clearly blessed her subjects through her long reign. Queen Elizabeth has certainly been the greatest and most influential ambassador Britain has ever had.
Think about it, Her face has probably appeared on more stamps, and more coins, and more banknotes, the world over, than any other living person. And what do each and every one of those coins tell us about her role? Fid Def or just F.D. What does it mean? In Latin, she is Fidei Defensor. What does that mean? “Defender of the Faith”. How does she defend the Christian faith? One example is her Christmas message. For 60 years, she has preached a sermon to the entire world. And every year, it focuses on Jesus. After Billy Graham, she has probably told more people about Jesus than anyone else in the whole world. She unashamedly encourages her subjects to know Jesus and serve Him by caring for others. Queen Elizabeth may be the Supreme Governor of the Church of England. But first of all, she is His Majesty, King Jesus’ loyal subject. And whether you are British or not, whether you are a Monarchist, Democrat or Republican, whether you recognize it or not, you are his subject also.
Our Bible reading explains why.
“I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe… far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.” (Ephesians 1:18-21)
The reason most of us have never met or spoken with the Queen is because she has such a high, exalted position. There is a great distance between us, even though she lives just a few miles away in Windsor. If that is true of the Queen, how much more true it must be of the distance between us and the Lord Jesus, the King of kings. He is “far above all rule and authority, power and dominion”. Far above all Archbishops and Popes. Far above all Prime Ministers and Presidents. Far above all Queens and Kings on earth, in the past, in the present or in the future. If He is so much higher and more distant, how can we possibly ever hope to know him?
That’s why the apostle prays,
“I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better.” (Ephesians 1:16).
Even though Jesus is far above all rule and authority, Jesus wants us to know him in a deep, personal and lasting relationship! Why?
“I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe.” (Ephesians 1:18-19)
Jesus wants us to know him so that we make him known! How do we do that? By recognising who we are. Wonder of wonders – when we trust in Jesus, we become members of His Royal family. What were the 3 ways you could join the Royal family? Birth, marriage and adoption. Very, very few people experience that privilege. But by God’s grace, every single person in the whole wide world can become a member of Jesus family! Like Queen Elizabeth, by God’s Grace, first of all,
You Must be Born Again as a Child of God
“Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God” (John 1:12)
You Will Be Adopted into Jesus Family
“For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ” (Ephesians 1:4-5)
You Will Reign with Jesus in Heaven
“Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.” (Romans 8:17)
How should we then live?
You are to Represent Jesus Here on Earth
“I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received.” (Ephesians 1:4)
You may never know her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth personally. But if you trust in Jesus, God will adopt you into His family. He consecrates you to represent him, as his ambassador, a Defender of the Faith. And one day, you will reign with him for ever and ever when King Jesus returns to reign over heaven and earth.
Let us pray.
Lord Jesus, we kneel in humble adoration, acknowledging that you are indeed King of Kings and Lord of Lords. We thank you that, wonder of wonders, by your sovereign grace, you call us not just to be your subjects but your sons and daughters. We praise and thank you for the privilege of representing you on earth as your ambassadors. Help us to live a life worthy of our calling. To your praise and glory. In Jesus name!
(a Family Service talk given at Christ Church, Virginia Water)