Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Mt 28:18 The Kingdom of God

Christos Pantocrator. God and man.
St. Catherine's Monastery, Sinai, Egypt
Image wikipedia 

With a few examples we have established from the Gospels that when Jesus said "I have been given all authority and heaven and earth" He did not promise end to wars, human suffering from sicknesses or natural disasters. On the contrary, these things continue and become even more intensive as the end of time approaches.

The majestic words are therefore for many unbelievers without any real significance and the authority of Jesus Christ is largely ignored from political calculations, economic decision making, administration of populations even in Christian countries. What worth is there to a man who claims to have all power and yet does not put an end to human suffering. History shows even how in His name bloody atrocities have been performed by His followers against non-Christians and other Christians.

Yet there are many reasons to take the words at the end of the Gospel of Matthew very seriously. Here are some of them

1. The words at the end of Matthew are spoken by a man who was publicly executed at the time of Pontius Pilate and his dead body buried in the city of Jerusalem.

2. Mission impossible that has been accomplished: many nations have been made into disciples of Jesus Christ through the message of joy and salvation proclaimed by His followers.

3. Christ will personally be present with His own people every day and every night. The enormous power behind the majestic words on authority lays in the last words of the Gospel according to Matthew
And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.
Matthew 28:20 NIV

King without a kingdom
In about 30 AD, when Jesus of Nazareth first began to preach to the people in the region around Lake Kinneret and then elsewhere His message is given in Mark 1
Now after John was arrested, Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.”
Mark 1:14-15
The kingdom of God is near, at hand. Therefore do two things, repent and believe the gospel. But He was a lone man speaking, king without a kingdom.

From this on until the end of the time it is the history of the Kingdom of God, Civitate Dei as St. Augustine called it in Latin,

Today, the passport control stations for this Kingdom are still open but the quota of refugees from this world to eternal life is becoming smaller as the chosen are marching in, generation by generation.

Soon the gates of the Kingdom may close as God in His Day finally resolves a number of problems on the earth.

The home of Jesus disciples is not this world but something in the future when the now hidden Kingdom becomes apparent and the glory and majesty of Jesus Christ the King of the Jews will be seen by all - for better or worse..

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