Friday, March 6, 2009

Kingdom Now Proclaimed

Matthew 11:11-15 (NIV)
11 I tell you the truth: Among those born of women there has not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist; yet he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.
12 From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven has been forcefully advancing, and forceful men lay hold of it.
13 For all the Prophets and the Law prophesied until John.
14 And if you are willing to accept it, he is the Elijah who was to come.
15 He who has ears, let him hear.

All the Prophets and the Law spoke of the coming One.  John said He is here, but he was slain before Jesus died on the cross for us which ushered in the kingdom of God.  The one washed in the blood of Christ is able to stand boldly before God in Christ.  That is why the least one in the kingdom of heaven is greater than John, for they are born of the Spirit, not just of women. 

No longer is the kingdom prophesied but it is now to be proclaimed.  Still advancing, but in love and based on faith.  

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Son of Man

Matthew 8:18-20 (NIV)
18 When Jesus saw the crowd around him, he gave orders to cross to the other side of the lake.
19 Then a teacher of the law came to him and said, "Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go."
20 Jesus replied, "Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head."

His reply might have been His way of saying that He is not part of this world.  His home is elsewhere, just as ours is.  

This is the first time He referred to Himself as “Son of Man” in the New Testament.  God called Israel His son.  Jesus came through Israel for His Incarnation, God taking on the flesh of man.  He came as a new man, not born in sin, but of the Holy Spirit.  In that sense He was a new generation.  At once, He was the Son of God and the Son of Man, Spirit and flesh together.  

That generation was not complete until He was resurrected in His new body.  So it will be with us, for we are brothers and sisters in Christ and children of God.  His becoming the Son of Man made it possible.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009


Matthew 5:17-18 (NIV)
17 "Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.
18 I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished.

Jesus fulfilled the Law in two ways.  The first is in meeting the Law’s requirement for death for disobedience.  His death took the place of our death. 

 The second is His fulfilling the law in Spirit.  No longer are we to understand God from the external application of the Law, but the Holy Spirit is given that the Law’s intent is realized within each heart.  The purpose of the Law was accomplished when Jesus said “It is finished” on the cross.  That purpose was to allow us to approach God and to realize the vast gulf between us.  His sacrifice allows the Holy Spirit to come and dwell within us.   For those who believe, the gulf is eliminated.  He has drawn near.  Those who believe have the ultimate fulfillment.  That is what He accomplished.