In 1952, 25-year-old Queen Elizabeth entered Westminster Abbey for her coronation. As she stood by King Edward’s Chair, the Archbishop presented her. “God save Queen Elizabeth!” everyone cried out together.
God certainly gave her a long life. She couldn’t have predicted that her reign would last 70 years and span such disturbing and tumultuous years. Yet she served her people and the world with grace and endurance. Her faith in Jesus inspired her. “The teachings of Christ have served as my inner light,” she said recently.
Her 2015 Christmas message came amidst a year of terrorism and migrating refugees. The Chinese communists had made troubling power moves. “It is true that the world has had to confront moments of darkness this year,” she said, “but the gospel of John contains a verse of great hope: ‘The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.’ ” The context is that Jesus is God the Son, the Creator in human flesh who offers the gift of eternal life. “In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men” (John 1:1-5). The Queen was offering the Light that overcomes the darkness of evil.
In 2020, the world was responding to the COVID pandemic. In that year’s Christmas message, the Queen mentioned one of Jesus’ parables. “This wonderful story of kindness is still relevant today. Good Samaritans have emerged across society showing care and respect for all…reminding us that each one of us is special and equal in the eyes of God.” By creating us all in His image, God made the Queen and the pauper of equal and high value. “In the image of God He created him; male and female He created them” (Gen. 1:27). He made you as a unique person so He could love you. When you grasp that God made, values, and loves you, it moves you from selfishness toward loving your neighbor.
The Queen’s 1952 coronation service ended with the singing of the anthem, “God Save the Queen.” By all indications, He did. And now, Elizabeth has departed for the land of the living.