Jehovah declares that the children of Israel are his children; therefore he is the father of Israel. He declared to Pharaoh: “Thus says Jehovah, Israel is my son, my firstborn” (Ex. 4:22). “You are the children of Jehovah your God” (Deut. 14:1). The people of Israel recognizes him as father: “But now, Jehovah, you are our Father” (Is. 64:8). Jehovah is father, but he is also king. He is the king of Israel “I am Jehovah, your Holy One, the Creator of Israel, your King” (Is. 43:15). He is the king of the ungodly, corrupt and idolatrous nations: “Say among the nations, ‘Jehovah reigns.’ The world is also established. It can’t be moved” (Ps. 96:10). “God reigns over the nations. God sits on his holy throne” (Ps. 47:8). “For the kingdom is Jehovah’s. He is the ruler over the nations” (Ps. 22:28).
The difference between the king and the Father is that the king places the interests of the kingdom above the rights of the people and the individual, and the Father places his interest on the people and on the individual. Why does that happen? That is because the kingdom of Jehovah is in this world, and the kingdom of the Father is not in this world:
- The king punishes unmercifully his children, which are his people, and kills them cruelly when they disobey, saying: “I will hide my face from them. I will see what their end shall be; for they are a very perverse generation, children in whom is no faithfulness. They have moved me to jealousy with that which is not God. They have provoked me to anger with their vanities. I will move them to jealousy with those who are not a people. I will provoke them to anger with a foolish nation. For a fire is kindled in my anger, Burns to the lowest Sheol, Devours the earth with its increase, and sets the foundations of the mountains on fire. I will heap evils on them. I will spend my arrows on them. [They shall be] wasted with hunger, and devoured with burning heat and bitter destruction. I will send the teeth of animals on them, with the poison of crawling things of the dust. Outside the sword shall bereave, and in the rooms, terror; on both young man and virgin, the nursing infant with the gray-haired man” Deut. 32:20-25).
The father is exactly the opposite, for he loves men so much, that he sent his only begotten Son from heaven to die on the cross for the sins of all, and through it redeem them from the condemnation of Jehovah: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life” (John 3:16). “Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us out of this present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father” (Gal. 1:4). “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us. For it is written, ‘Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree’” (Gal. 3:13).
- The king establishes laws, which, when disobeyed, bring punishments, curses, and death; for this reason Paul says: “But if the service of death, written engraved on stones, came with glory, so that the children of Israel could not look steadfastly on the face of Moses for the glory of his face; which was passing away:” (2 Cor. 3:7). It is the law that attributes sin, for Jehovah declares: “The soul who sins, he shall die” (Ezek. 18:4,20).
The Father, on the contrary, sends his Son to deliver us from the law, and also from sin, for the strength of sin is the law (1 Cor. 15:56; Rom. 6:14). The law became old and decrepit, as Paul says: “But now we have been discharged from the law, having died to that in which we were held; so that we serve in newness of the spirit, and not in oldness of the letter” (Rom. 7:6). Those Christians who believe in Christ receive the Holy Spirit after baptism (Acts 2:38), and the Holy Spirit guides them without the law (Gal. 5:18), teaches them all things (John 14:26), guides them in the private and public life revealing to the world that they are children of God (Rom. 8:14). And the Holy Spirit grants to the believers the heavenly gifts as substitutes to the vices of this world and of the flesh (1 Cor. 12:7-11), and reveals all the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven (1 Cor. 2:7-10). Finally he fills the hearts of the saints with love (Rom. 5:5). The law does nothing but to accuse, attribute sin, and kill. This is the glory of the ministry of the Spirit (2 Cor. 3:7-8).
- In a kingdom the glory belongs all to the king, therefore Jehovah, the king, says: “I am Jehovah. That is my name. I will not give my glory to another, nor my praise to engraved images” (Is. 42:8). And Jehovah prides himself of being king, saying: “Moab is laid waste, and they are gone up into his cities, and his chosen young men are gone down to the slaughter, says the King, whose name is Jehovah of Armies” (Jer. 48:15). The one who gives great value to his throne does not divide the glory with anyone. Jehovah speaks again in his vanity: “For my own sake, for my own sake, will I do it; for how should [my name] be profaned? and my glory I will not give to another” (Is. 48:11).
It is different with the Father, for in a family the glory belongs to everyone. Jesus received glory and honor from the Father: “For he received from God the Father honor and glory, when the voice came to him from the Majestic Glory, ‘This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased’” (2 Pet. 1:17). And Jesus declares very loudly: “The glory which you have given me, I have given to them; that they may be one, even as we are one” (John 17:22).
With the king Jehovah the priests are servants, the prophets are servants, the kings of Israel are servants, the people is under slavery (2 Chr. 12:7-8). And the inheritance of Jehovah is Canaan, land of the corrupt Canaanites, whom Israel had to take with their weapons, but did not succeed.
With Jesus all the Church, which is the family of God, and which forms the family of God the Father, receives a heavenly and eternal kingdom, free, just because it has revealed in its life the charity of God (Matt. 25:31-40; Heb. 11:8-10; 1 Pet. 1:3-4).
Glory to God the Father!
By Pastor Olavo Silveira Pereira