The True Emperor

Jesus of Nazareth has reigned as the sole sovereign over the Earth since his death, resurrection, and ascension. Already he sits on the messianic throne of David. Because of his obedient death, God resurrected and installed him as the ruler over all things, including the nations of the Earth. Before his ascension, Jesus declared that God had granted him all authority whether in heaven or on earth. Thus, his sovereignty is without limits - “ALL authority in heaven and on earth is given to me” - (Matthew 28:18-20).

In Caesarea Philippi, Jesus asked his disciples, “Who do men say that the Son of man is?” In response, Peter declared, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”

Jesus Lves - Photo by Manuel Rheinschmidt on Unsplash
[Photo by Manuel Rheinschmidt on Unsplash]

Jesus then disclosed what it meant to be the Messiah of Israel. He must “
go to Jerusalem and suffer many things of the elders, chief priests, and scribes, and be killed,” though God would resurrect him on the third day. Before kingship, he was called to become the Suffering Servant of Yahweh - (Matthew 16:13-28, Isaiah 53:1-12).


Both then and now, Jesus summons his disciples to follow his path by denying themselves and “taking up the cross” daily in obedience and self-sacrificial service for his Kingdom, people, and even for his “enemies.” By its very nature, discipleship often entails unjust suffering.

And in the Gospel of Mark, the Son of God is not recognized as such by any human being until his death on a Roman cross. But God raised him from the dead, and one day he will return in glory to judge all things. However, before his exaltation, he had to endure unjust suffering at the hands of unrighteous Jews and Gentiles.

At one point, Jesus promised that some of his disciples would not die until they saw the “Son of man coming in his kingdom,” a clause that alludes to a vision in the Book of Daniel:

  • I continued looking in the visions of the night, when, behold, with the clouds of the heavens, one like a son of man was coming, and to the Ancient of days he approached, and before him, they brought him near; and to him were given dominion and dignity and kingship, that all peoples, races, and tongues unto him should do service, his dominion was an everlasting dominion ” – (Daniel 7:13-14).


It was after his resurrection that Jesus announced his receipt of “all authority in Heaven and on Earth.” As the enthroned Messiah, he possesses this all-encompassing sovereignty both in heaven and on earth, and this dramatic change was foreseen by the Prophet Daniel.

And his declaration just prior to his ascension also echoes the messianic prophecy from the second Psalm:

  • (Psalm 2:7-8) – “Let me tell of a decree, Yahweh said to me, You are my son. I, this day, have begotten you. Ask of me and let me give nations as your inheritance, and as your possession, the ends of the earth.”

Moreover, his possession of absolute authority over the Cosmos is precisely why Jesus now commands his disciples to proclaim the Gospel and his sovereignty to all nations, to the “ends of the earth.”

From now on, he is the sovereign over all the nations, including the “Kings of the Earth,” and his disciples are dispatched as his envoys to proclaim his reign over all things. All men are called to submit to his lordship while time remains before the coming and inevitable judgment of the nations - (Matthew 25:31-46, Revelation 1:5-6).

And it is because of his faithfulness in death that God raised him from the dead and made him absolute Lord over the entire Creation:

  • (Acts 2:34-36) – “Assuredly, then, let all the house of Israel know that God has made him both Lord and Messiah, even the same Jesus whom you crucified.
  • (Ephesians 1:20-22) – “Which he energized in the Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenlies, over-above all principality, authority, and power, and lordship, and every name that is named, not only in this age, but also in the coming one. And did put all things in subjection beneath his feet. And gave him to be head over all things unto the assembly.

Thus, already, Jesus has all the authority necessary to reign over the Earth. He is the one true “Emperor” with sovereignty over the “Kings of the Earth” rather than Caesar or other pretenders to the Divine Throne.

He is the “Lamb with seven horns and seven eyes,” an image that points to his complete power and knowledge. He is not waiting to receive sovereignty at some future point, and there is nothing that is beyond his reach, including “death and Hades” – (Revelation 1:18).

From now on, anyone who rejects the Gospel announced by Jesus and his heralds defies his sovereignty and aligns him or herself with the “nations that rage” against Yahweh’s Messiah - (Psalm 2:1-2).