Kingdom Principle: Kingdom Come – means, there is more to come…
Each year my kids enjoy making a list of things they want for Christmas gifts. The creation of this list forces them to think carefully about what they want. As they make this list they also must think about the likelihood of what they might get, based on those who are receiving the list. (They can ask for an iphone– but no one who gets their list is going to buy it for them….) The key to a good list, is reaching as far as possible, without going so far as to get nothing on your list.
So now it’s time to make your list of what you want this Christmas, what will be on the list? Write out those top 5 right…. For whom were you making your list? Did you pass over making a list at all because you have no one to give it too? Maybe you ought to try making our a list for the King of Kings. How would this change your list from the first round? Advent is the season that proceeds Christmas, while chronologically it leads us to the 24th of December, it is purposed for us to learn how to make better lists for the King, not for us to better celebrate the arrival, rather it is all about the coming…
If the question is changed– stating that Jesus will return in 48 hours, what are the top 5 desires of your heart? In this our trials and troubles of this world seem to be removed, and our concern for other’s salvation is increased. This is what the Psalm is all about. What does it look like for us to live in this way every day?
In Advent we prepare for the coming of Jesus to the world (again) – we can look back at the celebration of the birth of Christ – our King – coming to Bethlehem. But we also must look forward to the second coming of Jesus to the world – bringing the final establishment of His Kingdom Come. The Kingdom of God is both here and now, and the Kingdom of God is very much still yet to come.
When the King returns to fully establish His Kingdom on this earth – all things will be restored in a way that cannot and will not happen prior to the advent of Jesus to the earth for the final time. With this advent there will be deliverance for God’s people, and at the same time there will be a judgment for those who are not known by Him. Are you ready for the advent of the King? For those who quickly respond yes – their eyes are fixed on their deliverance and removal of their suffering. For those who answer no – what are you lacking or waiting for?
Paul’s says – You don’t lack anything when you know the grace of Jesus Christ! You may lack nothing, but do you have what you have? What you have is: the love & forgiveness of God, the grace & truth of Jesus, & the gifts and power of the Spirit. Awareness of this is to be what keeps you awake at night, not for your own benefit but for the impact that it can and does have on the lives of those around you. Now, it is time to make a list and check it twice. The list that needs to be made, prior to the final Advent of the King, the list is of names whom are not blameless and pure (forgiven & free).
This is a great promise and hope for those who are attentive and waiting for the coming King. Yet, tied to this coming is the weeping for those who do not heed the warnings of the prophets and the signs of the times that point to the destruction of the earth. Mark 13 gave such a warning by Jesus for the Destruction of the Temple – which would happen 40 years after the resurrection of Jesus (one generation). There is much we do not know about the second coming, and the Bible seems very clear that no one will know the time or the hour of the final advent of the King. What we do know is that the King is not unaware of His people and as His people we are not to be unaware of the King. What we also know is that there is more to come… For this reason Jesus taught us to pray… “Your Kingdom Come, Your Will be done…” (Matt 6:9-13)
Make a list of three people whom you “fear” have not accepted the Grace of Jesus Christ. Now we must eagerly wait for Jesus to be revealed to them. (This is not passive hopefulness; this is on our toes anticipation.) For these people in this season; pray for their hearts to be opened, and for you to seek out opportunities to share life with them, being alert and aware of how your mission will be a testimony to them. Let us not give up on this list, not let us give up asking the King for his mercy over their lives.
Finally, remember the prophets have spoken, and the people have ignored the message, and the cycle continues…. You may be the prophet God is calling to share hope with your neighbor, co-worker or family member this season. The prophets were not simply visionaries who knew the future, rather they were vessels who God filled in the present. What is God filling you with this season? Peace, Joy, Love? What would it look like for you to be a prophet to the people on your list? This Advent season begins by remembering the prophets and sharing in their message of proclaiming the Kingdom Come.