Scripture: Luke 17:20 Once Jesus was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God was coming, and he answered, “The kingdom of God is not coming with things that can be observed; 21 nor will they say, ‘Look, here it is!’ or ‘There it is!’ For, in fact, the kingdom of God is among you.”
Observation: The Pharisees and Jesus had different understandings of the “kingdom of God”. The Pharisees wanted to know when Jewish people would finally be liberated from Roman rule – a literal kingdom as they’d known in the days of King David for example. Jesus was talking about a kingdom in which God the Father would rule all the earth via Jesus the Son. When Jesus says “in fact, the kingdom of God is among you” he may be referring to the fact that he was already present among them, God’s kingdom revealed in flesh and blood. However, the point of much of Jesus’ ministry of signs and wonders was to demonstrate the kingdom of God here and now.
Application: The world is a mess. There is so much suffering, violence, and injustice. It’s obvious that the kingdom of God has not yet been fully realized. That said, if you open your heart, mind, and spirit you can see glimpses of the Kingdom among us.
I was participating in a prayer group recently and, as often happens, we prayed for one another. As we prayed for a particular woman we prayed for the word of God to get released in her. She’s the sort of person who is very deep on the inside but is not much of a talker. Spoken words do not come easily – not her wheelhouse as she perceives it. Yet the Lord has called her to be a prophet, someone to whom God speaks, who then repeats what she’s heard to others for the sake of the entire community. Ironic, isn’t it? That God would choose a generally non-verbal person to speak on his behalf.
This morning I got a message. As she has been in prayer since our meeting, God has been revealing to her the truth of her calling, showing her things in the spirit to share with others. It’s been happening for some time, but there’s now greater clarity on what it means and what to do with it. God’s Kingdom has come in this humble woman, and she will never be the same.
Prayer: Gracious God, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Amen.