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Among and Within

Luke 17:20-21 (ESV)
Being asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, he answered them, The kingdom of God is not coming with signs to be observed, 21 nor will they say, Look, here it is! or There! for behold, the kingdom of God is in the midst of you.

Mark chapter one says that Jesus came "preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, and saying, 'the time is fulfilled and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent and believe in the gospel.'" (v 14-15). The "good news" that Jesus offered was that God's Kingdom was now present. Could have the call to repent ("to turn away from") been an invitation to turn away from thier dependence upon the Law and a new dependance upon the Spirit? How could have they known or understood what Jesus was saying? It was so far beyond thier frame of reference; a radical change of paradigm.

They must have heard Jesus' words about the Kingdom and possibly tried to understand what He was talking about by looking for a point of reference - "Oh, that's what he means by the kingdom." Maybe it's a different way of doing things, or a new set of rules to live by. I would imagine that people were looking intently for the signs of a new regime, even if it wasn't a polictical one. What was completly beyond them is the concept of this Kingdom being inside of them. The power and presence of God indwelling. The King ruling one's heart. God's kingdom is not only "among" you, but to everyone who can let go of thier attempts at self-righteousness, it can be "within" you.

Lord, let your kingdom be present not just around me, or among my life's activities, but let me live with a consciousness of it being resident within me.

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on April 15, 2008 5:28 AM.

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