The younger generation doesn’t understand a number of words and phrases, including “broken record,” “ice box,” “party line,” “ungawa” and “Kemo sabe.” Another phrase is one we don’t hear too much anymore, “Who does she think she is, the queen of Sheba?”
This phrase is used to describe one with an inflated opinion of themselves–someone full of pride. It’s based on a story told twice in the Old Testament about the queen who traveled to see for herself the grandeur of King Solomon’s court. Some believe she came from the modern nation of Yemen. If so, she made an arduous journey of more than 1,000 miles. In other words, she had a serious mission.
The writers tell us that when she saw the magnitude of Solomon’s wealth and heard his wisdom, “there was no more spirit in her.” The Hebrew word, “ruach,” means wind, breath or spirit. In this case, her pride went away like the air in a punctured tire. Or as a friend of mine said, “She went from hero to zero!”
We’re not sure what happened to the queen, but we’re certain when she left Jerusalem her life was never the same.
We don’t hear from the queen again until Jesus described judgment at the end of the ages (Matthew 12).
Imagine the scene. The Lord, the robed Supreme Judge of the universe enters the courtroom, and the assembled crowd rises in respect. The accused sit in the front row. These are unrepentant sinners from all the ages. Michael, Gabriel and the other angels sit in the jury box awaiting the proceedings.
The judge calls the first witness. Jesus said this is the men of Nineveh. They heard the preaching of Jonah, and they repented. Jonah was a reluctant preacher since we gather he really wanted Nineveh destroyed, but ultimately he was faithful to preach the word of the Lord. And everyone from the king to the average citizen, repented before God.
“And there is one before you greater than Jonah,” Jesus said, referring to the importance of his mission and message.
And then the judge calls the second witness, the Queen of Sheba. She, too, humbled herself before Solomon and repented before God.
“And there is one before you greater than Solomon,” Jesus said, referring to the importance of his mission and message.
And rebellious sinners from all the ages have no defense, for the evidence is overpowering.
Scripture says we’ve all fallen short, but we’re invited to turn from rebellion and humble ourselves before God. One day we’ll stand in his heavenly courtroom to give account.
It’s far better to humble ourselves today than wait until then, for humility is the pathway to redemption.
“Reflections” is a weekly faith column written by Michael J. Brooks, pastor of the Siluria Baptist Church in Alabaster, Alabama. The church’s website is www.siluriabaptist.com.