What is the kingdom of God?
This is an enormously heavy concept to look into and ponder on a theological level. For the sake of brevity and without beating around the bush, let’s keep it simple by looking at one aspect of St Luke’s perspective on the kingdom. In Luke 10:9, when commissioning the apostles with the work of evangelizing the world and giving them directives on how to go about it more specifically, Jesus tells them: “heal the sick who are there and tell them the Kingdom of God is near you.”
In more or less the same vein, Matthew 15:32 states“Jesus called his disciples to him and said, I have compassion for the crowd, because they have been with me now for three days and have nothing to eat; and I do not want to send them away hungry, for they might faint on the way.” The compassion of Jesus is beautifully simplistic and touching; it illustrates the fundamental truth that Jesus is perfectly mindful of our physical, emotional and spiritual needs. He is the healer and shepherd of our mind, body and spirit and wants us healthy on all fronts.
Matthew 19 goes as far as to say that selflessness and caring for the well being of others is primary and fundamental with respect to becoming a disciple of Christ: “if you wish to be perfect, go, sell your possessions, and give the money to the poor and you will have treasure in heaven; then come follow me.”
He sets the tone for the Gospel of Luke and powerfully announces his mission statement in 4: 18-19: Jesus says he is anointed by God-called to bring the good news to the disenfranchised especially: the poor, sick, imprisoned and oppressed; good news that likewise correlates with their restitution and healing. The kingdom of God is God’s grace and mercy in action in the here and now working to heal the broken inside and out; looking to fill us with the hope of redemption and his peace that comes from his care and boundless clemency.
When we prayerfully seek and live for the kingdom of God and his righteousness we honor God’s creation-ourselves-humanity by honoring, nurturing and preserving our “temples of the Holy Spirit”-our mind, bodies and souls; we conscientiously and piously tend to our needs on every level as we are declared sacred according to scripture: 1 Corinthians 6: 19-20:
“Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God? You are not your own; you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.”
Jesus therefore, calls for a kingdom mindset; using the truth of the gospel and its promises of care, healing and restitution, thus God’s peace as a frame of reference, a guide: A paradigm for wellness on the highest level; a fullness of faith that protects and fosters humanity holistically.
A kingdom mindset is a whistle blower that is not built for and driven by a spirit of accusation and condemnation.
Indeed, the holy spirit is calling you out; not to make an example out of you in the name of fairness, morality and justice because of a personal inequity; but from the wellspring of compassion and unconditional love Jesus desires wonder and awe in regards to how we view, deal with and treat ourselves. To be more blunt; God’s asking you to remove all the crap from your life; to take the garbage out to the curb for decomposition to do its work.
Sacred things are protected and worshiped; revered, esteemed and cherished; they are holy, symbols of grace reflecting the magnificence of God’s benevolence and providence. By any chance, have you ever seen yourself this way; have you ever acknowledged the biblical truth in Genesis 1:27 that “God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him.”
Let me put it another way; its not that God is in your DNA, we are in God’s DNA because he is primary in the most biblical sense, he is God the father almighty, creator of heaven and earth, “the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end”(Revelation 22:13); eternity courses through our blood, flesh and bone, holiness is the core and bedrock of humanity.
Taking care of ourselves is fundamental maintenance; an all encompassing maid service tending to the needs of all that constitutes us.
We are not meant and built for perdition but redemption and glory: It’s our divine responsibility to hold ourselves accountable for good “housing keeping” in, out, top, bottom-all in all-through and through.
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