A male sovereign who exercised ultimate political authority over a city-state, a nation, or an empire. A king generally held office for life, and monarchies in the biblical world were generally hereditary. In Israel, kingship was a relatively late institution. Before the institution of the monarchy, early Israel was ruled by what were essentially charismatic clan chieftains, and kingship was not instituted without serious reservations (Judg 9:7-15). Samuel the prophet warns the people of the “ways of the king” (1Sam 8:10-19) but takes the initiative in finding and anointing Saul as Israel’s king (1Sam 9:1-10:16; 1Sam 10:11). The king in Israel, even David, who was later regarded as the ideal king, was never an absolute lord over his subjects; he could not expropriate land with impunity (2Sam 24:24; 1Kgs 16:24; 1Kgs 21:4), nor was he exempt from moral and civil law generally (Deut 17:14-20). Excesses in monarchical power were one of the main things to call forth prophetic rebuke, a critique grounded in the conviction that God was the original and ultimate king (Jer 10:7-10; Ps 95:3). This idea is reflected in Jesus’s teachings about the kingdom of God (Mark 1:14-15; Luke 22:18-30). In the NT book of Revelation, Jesus is described with royal terminology (Rev 2:5; Rev 3:21; Rev 14:14; Rev 17:14; Rev 19:15-16).
The Parable of the Trees
7When it was told to Jotham, he went and stood on the top of Mount Gerizim, and cried aloud and said to them, “Listen to me, you lords ... View more
10So Samuel reported all the words of the Lord to the people who were asking him for a king.11He said, “These will be the ways of the king who will reign over y ... View more
Saul Chosen to Be King
1There was a man of Benjamin whose name was Kish son of Abiel son of Zeror son of Becorath son of Aphiah, a Benjaminite, a man of wealth. ... View more
11When all who knew him before saw how he prophesied with the prophets, the people said to one another, “What has come over the son of Kish? Is Saul also among ... View more
24But the king said to Araunah, “No, but I will buy them from you for a price; I will not offer burnt offerings to the Lord my God that cost me nothing.” So Dav ... View more
Samaria the New Capital
24He bought the hill of Samaria from Shemer for two talents of silver; he fortified the hill, and called the city that he built, Samaria ... View more
4Ahab went home resentful and sullen because of what Naboth the Jezreelite had said to him; for he had said, “I will not give you my ancestral inheritance.” He ... View more
Limitations of Royal Authority
14When you have come into the land that the Lord your God is giving you, and have taken possession of it and settled in it, and y ... View more
7Who would not fear you, O King of the nations?
For that is your due;
among all the wise ones of the nations
and in all their kingdoms
there is no one like you. ... View more
3For the Lord is a great God,
and a great King above all gods.
The Beginning of the Galilean Ministry
14Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God,15and saying, “The time is fulfill ... View more
18for I tell you that from now on I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.”19Then he took a loaf of bread, and when he had give ... View more
5Remember then from what you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless ... View more
21To the one who conquers I will give a place with me on my throne, just as I myself conquered and sat down with my Father on his throne.
Reaping the Earth's Harvest
14Then I looked, and there was a white cloud, and seated on the cloud was one like the Son of Man, with a golden crown on his head, ... View more
14they will make war on the Lamb, and the Lamb will conquer them, for he is Lord of lords and King of kings, and those with him are called and chosen and faithf ... View more
15From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron; he will tread the wine press of the fury o ... View more