Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Close to the Kingdom John 18:33-37; Daniel 7:9-10,13-14

God's comes near -- close enough all 5 senses detect His Kingdom coming into our midst.
--see the kingdom's close at hand; and the King is not always seen on some far away throne. We see him often as Pilate did--weak and wrongly presumed defeated. Pilate knew Jesus was not as he appeared. Pilate's wife's ominus dream warned him in Matthew 27:19. As Pilate met face to face with Jesus there was more still for him to see. Jesus was the King of an unseen kingdom. When Pilate asked Are you the King of the Jews John 18:34 Pilate wanted earthly answers. Jesus wouldn't give such a limited answer. “Is that your own idea,” Jesus asked, “or did others talk to you about me?” Pilate found no case against Jesus but he feared the power he could see more than the power he couldnet and he gave in to the demands of those he could see. John 18:33-37.
--feel God's kingdom. Like heat from the fire Daniel prophesied as the Ancient of Days was enthroned in power and glory Daniel 7:9-10. Christians today feel the extending glory of God's Kingdom as they picking up hammers to rebuild homes after floods and hurricanes. Carry a box of food or clothes gathered for neighbors (near and far) and for a moment you can feel the energy and the weight of God's kingdom coming.
--Smell the kingdom of God coming close. There's a hopeful smell right before rain at the end of a dryspell. There's a promising aroma of good meals prepared in churches night after night for hungry folks in cities and town across our nation and around the world. Pilate knew at some level the man with him was a king. There was just something basic and essential about Jesus. He asked directly, You are a king then> And Jesus answered in a way that Pilate never could, You are right in saying I am a king. In fact, for this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me. John 18:36 NIV.

--hear the kingdom. Truth comes when the light of Christ shines into every corner of our being. Pilate's final question for Jesus was, What is truth? John 18:37 In Jesus truth comes into the world. In him sin, death, and the devil meet their end and hope is fed again and again. A generation of kids, who have parents who for the most part don't worship, is coming to our churches on Wednesday Nights after school and Sunday mornings too. Many come for a week of Bible School every summer. Their parent don't draw near to church--but God is calling these kids to come and to hear.
--Taste the kingdom in the bread and wine of communion. There's fellowship in this meal with God and with all the saints who've gone before us as we eat and drink the body and blood of Christ are there. The Son of Man who suffered and today reigns in glory comes for us. The one who rightly reigns in Daniel 7:13-14 is there so close for us to take into our bodies.
The kingdom is very near, Pax, John

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