Right Here, Right Now

HarvestfestGraphics_2

Once, on being asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, Jesus replied, “The coming of the kingdom of God is not something that can be observed, nor will people say, ‘Here it is,’ or ‘There it is,’ because the kingdom of God is in your midst.” Luke 17:20-21

What is the “birthdate” of The United States of America? July 4, 1776, is when the Declaration of Independence was signed, but that was to document the unanimous vote for independence by the Continental Congress that happened two days earlier, on July 2. John Adams considered that to be the birthdate of the new nation. Britain, of course, disputed that a new nation had been formed at all, and if Britain had won the war that followed, there would have been no new nation—only a temporary rebellion.

For a very long time, the reality of a new people, a new kingdom, had gradually been forming in the minds and hearts, the practices and customs, of the inhabitants of the colonies. In some ways no nation can fully be described by maps or declarations or censuses.

This is especially true of the kingdom of God.

One day the Pharisees asked Jesus when the kingdom of God would come. They wanted to know when the anticipated war of independence from Rome would begin so that the Jews could once again have their own nation.

Jesus’ reply would have been hard for them to understand. The kingdom of God cannot be located on a map. It is not in this place or that place. It has no boundaries and cannot be counted by a census. Rather, the kingdom of God is “in your midst.”

Why “in your midst”? Because Jesus was in their midst. In Jesus the new reign of God for humanity had begun. As Jesus forgave people their sins, explained the truth of God, healed diseases, cast out evil spirits, and gave people hope for eternal life, he was establishing something so much more than a nation. He was giving people their lives back. Sin and Satan and death are the opponents, not Rome or an overseas king.

So if you’re waiting for the war against sin, evil, doubt, and fear to begin, it already has. And our best hope of gaining ground is to see Jesus “in our midst” with eyes of faith.

Mel Lawrenz

PONDER: What have you experienced in life that shows that God is in our midst now?

* * *

 

FAMILY TALK

Jesus ushered in the reign of God during his time on Earth. Since Jesus came and lived among us, anyone who puts his or her trust in God experiences his kingdom. Anywhere God is at work in our lives, his kingdom comes into focus.

Read Luke 17:20-21. When Jesus began speaking about the kingdom of God, many people thought it was going to be an earthly kingdom, that the Jews would be free from the domination of the Roman Empire. In these verses, Jesus explains that the kingdom of God is not that kind of kingdom. We experience the kingdom though the love of others, growing in our relationship with God, and when people come to know Jesus. Who in your life has put their trust in Jesus? How do these people help you understand God?

Krista Heinen

3 thoughts on “Right Here, Right Now”

  1. The Kingdom of God is a precious thing. It is wonderful to share it with someone. If God ever has you do this consider yourself truly blessed and privaleged. as I think about things that I do share with others ( money, time, gifts) none come even close to sharing the Gospel with another human being in need!

  2. A picture framed expressing the kingdom of God is a portrait of you and I interacting with a lost and dying world. If I look in the mirror does it reflect Gods kingdom? Can others see it as I engage my circle of influence?
    Well written Mel.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top
Share via
Copy link
Powered by Social Snap