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April 28, 2010

What is the Kingdom of God?

   If you've read my blog for any length of time, I often refer you to my friend Matt and have even re-posted many things he has written.  His new idea as of last week was to start a series called Pint and a Pipe Thursdays where he will post a question and you write a response and submit it on his site using a cool thing called a linky tool.  It's a pretty sweet idea (and I might be a little jealous that I didn't come up with something like it). I missed posting last week and keep whining about my time, but this doesn't need to be some grand theological dissertation.  So, I will post on the first topic and hopefully keep up!  You should definitely check it out and join in the discussion.


   As soon as you say the Kingdom of God, my first thought goes to the new testament passages about the kingdom of God being at hand.  Growing up, the focus was always on how we will experience the kingdom when we die.  It was always something to look forward to, and our entire outreach focus was on helping people make the choice to follow Jesus so they could also experience it...someday.  But what does it mean that the kingdom is already at hand, or the kingdom is near? 

   The past seven years or so have really challenged my view of the Kingdom of God.  The fact is that although man is fallen and creation is not as God originally intended, we are still living in the Kingdom.  Our role as Christians is to bring Christ to that fallen world.  We are fortunate that we have been chosen to be a part of the restoration of that kingdom to what it was meant to be.  I love how Rob Bell states it when he says there are burning bushes on our left and our right and we pass right by them.  We miss opportunities to be a part of the kingdom because we are so focused on our own agenda. 

   The idea of being a part of the Kingdom of God is not something we have to wait for as we sit idly by.  We can jump in and help restore the Kingdom by being Jesus to the people around us who are hurting.  We can show grace, offer forgiveness and live our life to the fullness that God intended a part of the Kingdom here and now...not just someday.


shellycoulter said...

Great thoughts. I enjoyed them even though I am not currently smoking or drinking! :)