Concepts of God: God is the king

Concepts of God: God is the king October 22, 2006
Count your blessings

God is The King, Al Malik. He is the King of Kings, the Lord of all Lords, the Master of the Universe. He is the source of all power and dominion, and He gives and takes it away as He pleases:

Say: “O God, Lord of all dominion! You grant dominion unto whom You will and take away dominion from whom You will; and You exalt whom You will and abase whom You will. In Your hand is all good. Verily, You have the power to do anything.” (3:26)

As Jesus taught his disciples to pray: “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:10). There is nothing that transpires about which God has neither the knowledge thereof nor the power to influence. No matter what power human beings may have over one another, it is nothing against the power of God. No matter how much influence one may have over events on the earth, it is no match for the dominion of God.

It should serve as a reminder for those who think they can rule and run the world for their own agenda. Those who think they can start wars of terrible destruction and think they will not be held accountable. Those who think they can shape and mold an unsuspecting and unquestioning public into supporting an agenda that is detrimental and destructive. Those who think that the morality of power is more important than the power of morality.

It should also serve as a reminder for those who commit terrible acts of inhuman violence in the name of the King. They think that they are doing good; nay, they do a terrible evil, and we can see through their guise of piety. They wrap their evil ugliness in the cloaks of the truth of the King’s Word. Yet, their vision will not prevail. Over them watches the King, and He will deal with their evil.

They must always remember that God is the King. His will be done always. Remember the encounter of King Nimrod with our father and master Abraham (peace be upon him). The Lord recounts the discussion:

Are thou not aware of that [king] who argued with Abraham about his Sustainer, [simply] because God had granted him kingship? Lo! Abraham said: “My Sustainer is He who grants life and deals death.” [The king] replied: “I [too] grant life and deal death!” Said Abraham: “Verily, God causes the sun to rise in the east; cause it, then, to rise in the west!” Thereupon he who was bent on denying the truth remained dumbfounded: for God does not guide people who [deliberately] do wrong. (2:258)

The king could not respond to Abraham’s very simple truth about the True King. In fact, using the alternate meaning of kufr in this verse, the last part can also be translated: “Thereupon he who was ungrateful to God remained dumbfounded.” Nimrod was ungrateful to God by thinking himself to be like unto the King: tradition relates that when Abraham said that God gives and takes away life, the King brought two men, killing one and sparing the other. But, he is not like the King. He is not like the King.

Sooner or later, all will understand Who is the real King:

…the Day when they shall come forth [from death], with nothing of themselves hidden from God. With whom will sovereignty rest on that Day? With God, the One who holds absolute sway over all that exists! (40:16)

Yet, on that day, it will be too late. What good is knowing that our Lord is the only King worthy of serving when we meet Him face to face? What good is realizing for the first time that He is the Ultimate Truth on the Last Day? What good is owning up to your heedlessness then? The time is now, here and now, on this earth to make that important realization. We have to understand this now and have that understanding be reflected in our actions.

When we know that He is the King, then how dare we wilfully disobey Him? If we know that He is the King, how can we simply go about with our lives thinking that He does not see? If we know that He is the King, how dare we live in His Kingdom and disobey His law? Part and parcel of our rights as citizens of this blessed country is the pledge to defend and follow the Law of the land. It is not right that we pledge to uphold the law and then betray that pledge. That is the sign of an unfaithful citizen.

Well, we all live in the Kingdom of the Lord God on High. There is not a place in this universe that does not belong to Him. And He is the King of it all. Thus, how could we dare wilfully disobey Him in His Kingdom? What sort of citizen would we be? How could we dare to spread death, destruction, and corruption on this earth? How could we, when He is our King?

Thus, those who think they have the power to do anything they want without any accountability should well remember that over them rules the King. He is watching. His is the ultimate sovereignty. He is possessor of all dominion and power. His will ultimately is done, as He says in the Sacred Scripture: For God always prevails in whatever be His purpose: but most people know it not (12:21).

Most people know it not. Yet, there is an opportunity for us to be among that small minority: to be among those who always keep in mind that God is the King, and let that understanding be reflected in our actions. And when we start to despair over the terrible destruction caused by the godless in this world (even among those who claim to surrender themselves to Him), let us always remember:

Let it not deceive thee that those who are bent on denying the truth (or those who are ungrateful) seem to be able to do as they please on earth: it is [but] a brief enjoyment, with hell thereafter as their goal – and how vile a resting place! (3:196-197)

All praise is due to the King, Lord of all the worlds. Amen.

Hesham A. Hassaballa is a Chicago physician and writer. He is the co-author of “The Beliefnet Guide to Islam,” published by Doubleday in 2006. His blog is at

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