How Does God’s Kingdom Come?

2021-01-10 – Year B – Epiphany 1 – The Rev. Canon Christopher M. Klukas
Isaiah 42:1-9; Psalm 89:20-29; Mark 1:7-11

  • Riot at the Capitol Building.

The Anointing of David

  • Psalm 89:20
    • “…the anointing symbolized equipment for service, and is associated with the outpouring of the Spirit of God”
  • Bethlehem was a “small and unimportant village.” The main reasons why we recognize it are as the hometown of King David and as the birthplace of Jesus.
  • The anointing of David as King was a quiet, family affair that went unnnoticed for a very long time, but it was the beginning of the reign of the greatest king of Israel.
  • This anointing was in response to the wickedness of the reigning king, Saul.
  • David was likely 10-15 yrs old when anointed, but he didn’t formally take the throne until he was 30 (2 Samuel 5:4). That means he waited for 15-20 years!
    • He could have killed Saul before this, but he did not (1 Samuel 24:10).
  • Change to the kingdom came through the people of God seeking the Lord. Not from the seat of power or military might.
  • Psalm 146:3-4 – “Put not your trust in princes…”
    • When you trust in any person to be your salvation (spouse, pastor, gov’t official, etc.) they will always disappoint you. That is a weight no human can bear.
    • David was a good king, maybe the best, but he was also an adulteror and a murderer.

The Baptism of Jesus

  • Baptism was a symbol of repentance, but Jesus had nothing to repent from. Sinless.
    • One reason for this Baptism was for Jesus to identify with sinful humanity so he could redeem sinful humanity.
  • Jesus’ Baptism was also an anointing, not with oil, which symbolized “the outpouring of the Spirit of God,” but with the Holy Spirit himself – Mark 1:10.
    • Acts 10:37-38
    • The words “Messiah” and “Christ” mean “annointed one.”
    • Jesus had been appointed for this role long before, but now God the Father publicly commissions him to begin his ministry.
    • Isaiah 42:1-4
  • Jesus is a Son of David
    • Jesus’ Baptism takes place in the wilderness, far from the seat of power.
    • When Jesus does officially enter Jerusalem, he does so riding a colt (Mark 11:7-10)
    • When he comes face to face with Pilate, and Pilate asks him about the charge of being a rebel king, Jesus responds saying “My Kingdom is not of this world…” (John 18:36)

Building the Kingdom

  • Where is the Kingdom of God?
    • The Kingdom of God is not a place, it is not the same thing as any of the nations of the world, it is not even precisely the same as the Church. The Kingdom of God is wherever Jesus reigns as King, chiefly in the hearts of believers.
    • 181. How does God’s kingdom come? God’s kingdom is announced to the people of Israel, arrives in Jesus Christ, and advances through the Church’s mission. It will appear in its fullness once Christ returns in glory.
      • Christendom and evangelism by military force.
    • 182. How do you live in God’s kingdom? As a citizen of God’s kingdom, I am called to live in obedience to God’s Word and will, in loving witness and service to others, and in joyful hope of Christ’s return.
      • In a post-Christendom world we are to do what we should have been doing all along, focus on bearing the light of Christ.
  • Be a light
    • Isaiah 49:6 “I will make you as a light for the nations, that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.” Seasonal greeting during Epiphany.
    • John Stonestreet “I think that the most important work that we have right now…is to thicken our Christian institutions. The most important work we can do is to prepare good citizens to govern themselves so we don’t need big government. I think, also, that what we really need to consider as well is the revolutionary ways the church has influenced society in almost all the ways we would have never thought.”
  • Be careful about what you say and how you say it.
    • Bp. Neil Lebhar – “While I certainly expect that you will have vigorous conversations with friends and family, I ask that you not throw political grenades or jibes publicly and on the Internet…“Aim for restoration, comfort one another, agree with one another, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.” (2 Corinthians 13:11, ESV) We may certainly all speak against the chaos of the moment, but we must do so from a place of humility, not self-righteousness. And we must remember that those who disagree with us are made in the image of God, and should be treated accordingly.”
  • Pray.

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