Friends, a lot of what I’ve written comes from the current issue of ‘Southern Cross’, but I thought it helpful for us all to reflect on ….
Her Majesty’s coronation service in Westminster Abbey was held in June 1953. It was attended by more than 8,000 people and lasted three hours. It was watched on television by an estimated 25 million.
It began with solemn oaths. Her Majesty was asked by the Archbishop of Canterbury if she would govern the peoples of her realms according to their laws; if she would temper justice with mercy in all her decisions and if she would “to the utmost of her power maintain the Laws of God and the true profession of the Gospel”. To each she replied, “I will”. And then she was presented with a Bible.
Before she received the crown, the orb, the sceptre and the rod, the first item presented to the Queen immediately following her oaths was the Holy Bible. The Archbishop of Canterbury, accompanied by the Moderator of the Church of Scotland, gave it to her, saying:
Our gracious Queen ….. we present you with this Book, the most valuable thing that this world affords. Here is wisdom; this is the royal Law; these are the lively Oracles of God.
Oh, how it seems that time, and our so-called cleverness, have now changed things. We today (and I am greatly generalising here) think that we are now very wise and this book, the Holy Bible, no longer contains words that are alive for us today. We also don’t think that the Holy Bible is the most valuable thing that this world affords. Or do we? And we certainly don’t think that Jesus is alive today, or do we? And do we expect, like what was asked of her Majesty, that our church leaders should also do their utmost to protect the purity of the gospel?
Yes, times seems to have changed. But the message has not. As someone once said to me: It is as simple as this: God loves you. Jesus died for you. What are you doing about it? We know, by her life, what the Queen has done about it. What about us? What about me?