What Is "The Kingdom of God"?
“…and he sent them out to proclaim the Kingdom of God…” - Luke 9:2a
Have you ever been tasked with a job… but not given the adequate tools of instruction to get it done?
That might sound like a trick question, because right now, we may all be feeling that! From medical professionals to educators, small business owners to clergy, we’re basically all being called to forge our way through, while we’re in the dark about how to proceed faithfully and effectively.
But beyond our current pandemic, that question relates to our mission as followers of Jesus.
You see, one of the first jobs that Jesus gave his disciples was sending them out to “proclaim the Kingdom of God” (Luke 9:2a). He gave them some pretty concrete instructions about what to take with them, what not to take, what to do if they were well received and what to do if they were not. But in both Luke and Matthew’s telling (chapter 10), neither time does Jesus explain what the Kingdom was. That was because it was Jesus primary message. Over and over, it was on Jesus’ lips. The Kingdom, the kingdom, the kingdom! The Kingdom of Heaven. The Kingdom of God. He proclaimed it to be near, he proclaimed it’s power, he compared it in parables and he preached it in synagogues.
Jesus’ disciples heard, over and over, about the Kingdom. It can only be that they came to understand what the Kingdom was and what Jesus meant by it. Imperfectly, to be sure, but enough that when Jesus sent them out, he didn’t further explain their primary message. He said, “proclaim the Kingdom of God.”
Today in North America, we’re a quarter century removed from having a king and two millennia removed from Jesus’ proclamation of the kingdom. It appears nearly 120 times in the gospels alone, almost always on the lips of Jesus. That’s more times than Jesus mentioned gospel or good news. It’s more times than he mentions sex, money, hell or even pray!
I think it’s vitally important that we hear Jesus’ message of the kingdom and come to understand what he was saying, so that we can fulfill the call we’ve been given, which is to proclaim the kingdom!
This Fall, on Sunday morning, through midweek letters and online videos plus multiple Small Group options, we’re going to dig deep into the Kingdom that Jesus’ proclaimed so we can do just that!
I invite you to join us for what I believe will be an exciting, challenging and empowering journey into the heart of Jesus’ message!
Welcoming people to Grow in Jesus,