Arrival of the Kingdom

Jesus forced a demon out of a man who could not talk. And after the demon had gone out, the man started speaking, and the crowds were amazed. But some people said, “He forces out demons by the power of Beelzebul, the ruler of the demons!”

Others wanted to put Jesus to the test. So they asked him to show them a sign from God. Jesus knew what they were thinking, and he said:

A kingdom where people fight each other will end up in ruin. And a family that fights will break up. If Satan fights against himself, how can his kingdom last? Yet you say that I force out demons by the power of Beelzebul. If I use his power to force out demons, whose power do your own followers use to force them out? They are the ones who will judge you. But if I use God’s power to force out demons, it proves that God’s kingdom has already come to you. (Luke 11:14–20)

Jesus told those who criticized him that God’s kingdom had already come to them. The proof of the arrival of God’s kingdom was the fact that he was driving out demons. Satan’s authority as ruler of the world was over and God was in charge now. Satan was proven to be a defeated foe, since only God would be capable of getting rid of demons.

The world is still full of trouble and heartache, and we eagerly await the coming of Jesus back to earth again, just as he promised.. But it is also true that even now God is ruling and reigns. Because of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross, he has overcome the evil one. Ever since, God has connected himself permanently and intimately with all those who call on the name of Jesus.

The ambassador of a foreign nation lives in a building called an embassy. And even though the embassy is physically within the borders of another nation, that embassy is the sovereign territory of the ambassador’s nation. No one may enter it without permission of the ambassador. An attack on the embassy would be the same as an attack upon the foreign nation that the embassy represents. The nation represented by the embassy reaches out across the miles and lives fully within the confines of the embassy grounds. Likewise, the future kingdom of God reaches back from the future and lives within each of us. The kingdom of God is here, now, with each one of us.

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About R.P. Nettelhorst

I'm married with three daughters. I live in southern California and I'm a deacon at Quartz Hill Community Church. I spent a couple of summers while I was in college working on a kibbutz in Israel. In 2004, I was a volunteer with the Ansari X-Prize at the winning launches of SpaceShipOne. Member of Society of Biblical Literature, American Academy of Religion, and The Authors Guild
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