Daily Radio Bible Podcast
THE KINGDOM OF GOD IS RISING UP
Today’s readings are Zechariah 7 – 9 and Luke 13. We are reading from the New Living Translation.
The world is falling down. Those are the headlines. Jesus is going to read the headlines and recount the more recent and tragic events of his day. Jesus says, How about those Galileans that Pilate murdered as they were offering sacrifices in the Temple? – our countrymen murdered in church. Do you think they were the worst sinners around? Is that the way you think this works – that they were murdered because they weren’t good enough? They were pious, heroic, true martyrs for the country, killed by foreign oppressors. But Jesus says, Pious you may be. But unless you repent, you too, will perish. That’s just how broken this world is. Piety will not prevent you from perishing. Then Jesus grabs another headline – How about those 18 that died when that tower of Siloam fell on them ?- a random, tragic accident. Was their tragic death connected to the condition of their soul? Jesus says no. It didn’t happen because they were the worst, or due to the condition of their soul, but because of the condition of the world.
The world is broken. Death comes to the pious and the random bystander, alike. Tragedy comes because the world is falling down. It’s a broken world with broken people. Towers fall on people and people fall in temples, even as they worship. The world is falling down. That’s what the headlines say.
But Jesus isn’t content just to read the headlines of the world’s tragic news. No, he is here to announce the Good News to a falling world. Jesus tells us that the kingdom of God is rising up. It’s like a gardener who waits a long time for that fig tree to bear fruit, but he keeps at it. It’s like a dear woman who has been bent over for 18 years, unable to stand up straight, until God raises her up. It’s like a mustard seed that grows up and becomes the largest of all garden plants, and the birds of the air come and rest in it’s shade. It’s like a little bit of yeast that has worked into the dough, and permeates the whole loaf. The world is falling down but Jesus says, the kingdom of God is rising up. He’s going to bring us the Good News. Because he is going to go down to Jerusalem where he will be raised up on a cross, so that this falling world, with fallen souls, will be raised up and made new. Ours is to trust him, repent, turn to him, and recognize not only the needs of a broken world, but of our own broken souls. We need his Good News and good life to come, and to make us new.
The headlines might say that the world is falling down. But Jesus comes with the Good News that he is raising it up – he’s raising people up to new life. That’s Good News worth listening to, holding on to, and building your life around.
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