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Kings in the Sight of God: The Good, Bad, and Ugly Leaders

This article first appeared on Team Jesus Magazine here.

The United States has undergone a recent transition of leadership. This historical transition has caused a turbulent wave for Christians. The Body of Christ is currently divided by which “king” is pleasing to God. As a result, the Lord has put it in my heart to write to you.

Different names recognize those who lead countries throughout the world. Some are called presidents, kings, queens, prime ministers, chancellors, sultans, etc. No matter their title, they all reign under the greatest government of all, the Kingdom of Heaven reigned by the King of kings, Jesus. As God, the Father has established Jesus to rule forever (Isaiah 9:7). He has also allowed the earth’s leaders to lead for a time, over a specific people.

Now, I do understand that not all world leaders will be Christians. But, does a failure to accept Christ release people from accountability? Certainly not. Through Christ, God will hold the world accountable for their deeds (Revelation 20:12).

From Judges to Kings: A Little History

As you may know, after Moses, God placed judges over the children of Israel. Seeking to be like other nations, the children of Israel cried out for a king and rejected the last judge, Samuel’s sons. 1 Samuel 8 details this transition from judges to kings. In God’s acquiesce to the request of the people, He selects a king. Thus, we have the first anointing of a king of Israel, Saul (1 Samuel 10:1).

King Saul is a direct result of the people’s prayer, so I like to call him “the people’s choice.” But as the Word of God declares, our ways are not God’s ways (Isaiah 55:8). So the people’s prayer and rejection of Samuel’s sons was received unto God as a rejection of Himself (1 Samuel 8:7).

As we continue through the Word of God, the history of kings is documented. Following Solomon, Israel is divided into a northern and southern kingdom. The north territory retained the name of “Israel,” and the south took “Judah.”

How Are Kings Remembered?

Unfortunately, our current political structure has tainted the view of what it means to be a good leader. Good leaders are usually determined by how well they please the people. In contrast, God expects leaders to please Him. In doing so, they keep His ways and ensure that the nation they govern does the same. If a king did not fulfill this task, they were deemed evil in the sight of God. We have to remember that although God may permit a king to take office, it doesn’t mean He is pleased with the choice. King Saul is an excellent example of this.

The Bible says in 1 Kings 15:26, “…and he [King Nadab of Israel] did evil in the sight of the Lord, and walked in the way of his father, and in his sin wherewith he made Israel sin.” This is a powerful insight into what is defined as an evil king. Not only did this king do evil personally, but he was also responsible for the sins of the nation. This Scripture helps us understand something powerful – that God expects earth’s leaders to uphold His law personally and nationally.

God’s Word is the Standard

Sometimes, believers can stray away from God unknowingly. I have been there. It takes the Word of God to help us find our way. I want so much for you to compare everything to God and His Word. In these last days, we must not look at what is permitted to happen but what God says in His Word. Jesus even told us about it concerning divorce. Matthew 19:8 says, He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning, it was not so.” It was never God’s design for husbands and wives to divorce, but Moses, being persuaded by the people, instituted a law that was not the will of God.

Here is the truth, democracy has never been the way of God. God is God, He establishes His law and gives free will for all to accept or reject. Each choice comes with a consequence—the end.

Allowing the flesh to choose leads to destruction. Since the beginning of time, humans have had the innate predisposition to choose sin. Our carnal mind is at enmity with God (Romans 8:7). Without the help of God, people will choose unrighteousness. It was proven in the garden of Eden and ever since. I know this is a hard saying, but it is the truth.

Seeing that God has permitted me to live in a country that operates under democracy, I, as a person submitted to God, should never cast a vote for a law or person that would increase this nation’s sin.

An Example of a Good King

Josiah is a king of Judah, remembered as good in the sight of God. The Bible says in 2 Kings 23:25, “And like unto him [Josiah] was there no king before him, that turned to the Lord with all his heart, and with all his soul, and with all his might, according to all the law of Moses; neither after him arose there any like him.”

When you read about King Josiah, you will see that he corrected his nation. He removed all idols, temples, and anything contrary to God. Of course, the way King Josiah rid Judah of evil is not the same way a good leader would do it today. The Bible says our warfare weapons are not carnal (2 Corinthians 10:4), so physically destroying idols is not the cleansing I am suggesting. But, there are ways to silence the voice of idols, abominations, and sin without physical contact.


We need leaders who are fighting to please God over people. A nation that corporately practices evil kindles the anger of God. We see this in the days of Noah when the earth was corrupt and filled with violence (Genesis 6) and the nations of Sodom and Gomorrah, who were filled with haughtiness and homosexuality (Genesis 18:20, Ezekiel 16:50).

There is no perfect king but Jesus Christ. Therefore, all leaders will have some type of error. But, choosing the lesser of two evils has Biblical backing, as Jesus told the Pharisees they “omitted the weightier matters of the law” (Matthew 23:23). So yes, every sin is NOT weighted the same. But they have to be weighed according to God and not personal opinion.

The fulfillment of the Scriptures concerning the antichrist is inevitable. So, I am not at all surprised by the way this world is moving. As this nation and the world continue to make provisions for people to sin against God, things won’t get better. As leaders pass laws that liberate sin and silence righteousness, it is evident that we are inching closer to the return of Jesus Christ.

This article is written to bring much thought to the heart of God’s people. I pray that you consider the times we are in and do what the Bible says – watch and pray that you are found worthy to escape what is coming to this world (Luke 21:36).

We cannot get distracted by what is popular or comfortable.

I love you all.

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