And the Government Shall Be Upon His Shoulder

Dec 14, 2020

Electoral College delegations from the various states meet today to cast their votes for president of the United States. Those totals will be read in a Joint Session of Congress on January 6, 2021, bringing to an end (perhaps!) the disputed 2020 presidential election.

Whatever happens, I have good news! It comes from one of the most well-known passages in the Old Testament — one quoted often at this time of year:

For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given;
and the government shall be upon his shoulder,
and his name shall be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of his government and of peace
there will be no end,
on the throne of David and over his kingdom,
to establish it and to uphold it
with justice and with righteousness
from this time forth and forevermore.
The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this.
– Isaiah 9:6-7 ESV

Earthly leaders and governments come and go (Isaiah 6:1). Even nations come and go (Isaiah 60:12). But there is a King whose reign will last, a King who will ever rule in justice and righteousness!

It is this King who we serve even now, and for whose return we wait with confident anticipation. We serve him here as stewards, recognizing that everything we have belongs to him (1 Chronicles 29:14, 1 Corinthians 4:7).

So no matter what happens in the temporal realm, let’s keep our eyes fixed on the everlasting King. And let us follow the example of the wise men: "They fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts..." (Matthew 2:11 ESV).

Written by

Joseph Slife

Joseph Slife

Joseph Slife has been a news writer for the Associated Press, a college instructor, and a radio host. He and his wife Joye have three grown sons.