The younger generation does not understand a number of words and expressions, including “broken record”, “ice box”, “party line”, “ungawa”, and “kemo sabe”.
Another phrase is the one we don’t hear too much anymore, “Who does she think she is, the Queen of Sheba?”
This phrase is used to describe someone who has an inflated opinion of themselves – someone full of pride. It is based on a story told twice in the Old Testament about the queen who traveled to see for herself the greatness of King Solomon’s court. Some believe she comes from the modern nation of Yemen. If so, she’s had an arduous journey of over 1,000 miles. In other words, she had a serious mission.
The writers tell us that when she saw the extent 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, his pride is gone like the air from a flat tire. Or as a friend of mine said, “She went from hero to zero!”
We don’t know what happened to the queen, but we are sure that when she left Jerusalem, her life was never the same.
We hear no more of the queen until Jesus describes the judgment at the end of time (Matthew 12).
Imagine the scene. The Lord, the robed supreme judge of the universe enters the courtroom, and the assembled crowd rises in reverence. The defendants are seated in the front row. They are unrepentant sinners of all ages. Michael, Gabriel and the other angels sit in the jury box awaiting the proceedings.
The judge calls the first witness. Jesus said they are the men of Nineveh. They heard Jonah preach, and they repented. Jonah was a reluctant preacher since we realized he really wanted Nineveh to be destroyed, but ultimately he was faithful in preaching the word of the Lord. And everyone, from the king to the average citizen, repented before God.
“And there is a greater than Jonah before you,” Jesus said, referring to the importance of his mission and his 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 a greater than Solomon before you,” Jesus said, referring to the importance of his mission and his message.
And rebellious sinners of all ages have no defense, for the evidence is overwhelming.
The scriptures say we have all failed, but we are invited to turn from rebellion and humble ourselves before God. One day we will stand in his heavenly audience hall to render account.
It is much better to humble yourself today than to wait until then, because humility is the path to redemption.
“Reflections” is a weekly faith column written by Michael J. Brooks, pastor of Siluria Baptist Church in Alabaster. The church’s website is siluriabaptist.com.