We are currently in the month of Elul on the Hebrew Calendar. My favorite thing about this month is that it is known as the month the king is in the field. In the Bible, the king would leave his palace during the month of Elul and set up camp in the field and everyone was welcome to approach him.
Most of the year the king lived in a palace protected by guards and iron gates. To have an audience with the king, you had to be summoned. Should you approach without being summoned, you would die (Esther 4:11)… unless he extended the golden scepter to you and spared your life. After the summons, there was palace protocol to learn before you could approach a king. You had to dress correctly, speak correctly, and have proper mannerisms, your presentation had to be flawless. Once you got to the capital, you were ushered to the palace through the many intimidating gates, corridors and antechambers that lead to the throne room. Even the Queen of Sheba passed out when she came before King Solomon!
BUT….once a year in the month of Elul, the king would come into the field.
He would leave his palace and go out among his people. He would set up his royal tent in the field near a town and all who wanted to see him were welcome.
The announcement was made, The King is In the Field.
They were all welcome to come just as they were… no dress code, no protocol, no intimidation. The king receives them all with a smiling face and a radiant countenance, desiring to hear their concerns. The peasant behind his plow has access to the king in a manner unavailable to the highest ranking minister in the royal court when the king is in the palace.
Let’s look at a couple of Biblical examples of kings in the field. 2 Chronicles 19 is about king Jehoshaphat going into the field. Verse 4 says “So Jehoshaphat lived in Jerusalem and went out again among the people from Beersheba to the hill country of Ephraim and brought them back to the LORD, the God of their fathers.” The king went into the field to turn the people’s hearts back to the Lord — restoration. When he went out among the people he saw things God didn’t like…. injustice, bribery, and oppression. So, he established judges to end oppression and bring justice. — God wants his people to experience His character. He wants to manifest His Justice, His righteousness and His love — this wasn’t being seen among the people.
Another king who went out into the field is Melchizadek in Genesis 14. Melchizadek gave Abram bread and wine and blessed him saying: “Blessed is Abram by God and Blessed is God who delivered your enemies into your hand.” When Abram was weary from battle, king Melchizadek came into the field to strengthen and refresh him. He blessed Abram.
Of course, the greatest King who left His throne to come into the field was Jesus. He lived in our field in a tent of mortal flesh. He was God made accessible, smiling and radiant. He came to manifest God’s goodness, love and righteousness… to heal and deliver ALL. He came to draw us into a relationship with the Father. That’s what it looks like when the king is in the field.
He is the King of kings. Revelation 1:6 says He made us kings and priests. We are in the field. What should that look like? We should be walking among the people, receiving them with a smiling face, listening to their concerns and like Jehoshopat reconciling them back to God by manifesting His righteousness and love towards them…..
So we are Christ’s ambassadors, God making His appeal as it were through us. We [as Christ’s personal representatives] beg you for His sake to lay hold of the divine favor [now offered you] and be reconciled to God. ~ 2 Cor 5:20
Like Melchizadek, strengthening and refreshing them…letting them know they have been blessed by God. Offering them the bread and the wine… offering them Jesus and what He did for them through the Cross.
And like our King Jesus showing forth the nature of our Father… His goodness, love, righteousness. His ability to heal and deliver ALL. Drawing them into a relationship with a Good Daddy. Not just in the month of Elul but all the time.