‘In Him is life. And that life is the light of us all.’ We need to examine the possibility that what is marketed as Christianity is not the kingdom Jesus began.
The Kingdom of God is not about morality. Not initially. Although you could be forgiven for thinking it is. Much of what we call Christianity is about morality. But this is because what is observed and held to as a culture is a Christianised version of the knowledge of good and evil. The Kingdom of God is life to the full through Jesus who is all and in all.’
‘For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive’ 1 Cor 15.22 NIV.
‘In Him we live and move and have our being’ Acts 17.28.
‘For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory’ Col 3.3,4. NIV.
The glory of life is ours because Jesus manifests Himself as us! (No we are not deity but we are sons – the expression of the person of the son of God).
The dumbing down of Jesus to a religion will neither change the world or convince the non-believer that God is real.
Christianity is not a religion. It is a person. But not just any person. It’s the person who is life Himself. Jesus did not spruik morality. He came to give life to the full. Here’s the thing. Life will produce good morality but morality cannot produce life. It will produce special pleading and bias of the kind where sexual sin is abhorred while the collective avarice that limits healthcare to the poor is ignored. Here’s the second thing. New life and becoming a new person comes from God and being in God – from being in Christ to be specific. It does not come from embracing morality. Importunely many Christians who know a moral framework do not know God.
We know God through Jesus Christ; by knowing Jesus personally. His gospel is better than most of us know. It’s not that He can be received into our lives. The truth is that we have already been received into His!
New life is more than individual victory over sin. It is participation in the new creation. Again, this new creation is the person of Jesus whose desire is to multiply His resurrected life in you, the church and the world. When Paul talks of ‘Christ your life,’ He is declaring that you and all who follow Him are a kingdom that is being regenerated with Christ’s life.
This should alert us to the fact that His life, His Kingdom encompasses all human activity – not just sex or bank robbery. It covers commerce, economic and politics – the responsibility of the rich to the poor and the quality of leaders we choose for our nation to take the lead in world affairs. Christ’s Kingship will undo and rebuild the world system.
Jesus’ kingdom is about life – the life of the whole world. In Him we speak of new creation life. So, when we are choosing a prime-minister or a president, we need to keep in mind that there are larger issues than sexuality or some stance on Israel. The peace and the well-being of the nation and the world is at issue. So we are called do our best to choose persons of wisdom, competence and humility – persons who live by the truth, are gracious, tell the truth and face the truth rather than being selfishly obsessed with creating an artificial world of lies, half-truths and spin flowing from a selfish mind. So what’s the deal with some Christians – is it choosing wickedness that good may come?
The old testament scripture cited here has double relevance in our day because God’s face has been revealed in Jesus.
‘If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land’ 2 Cor 7.14 NIV.
So what kind of Messiah will be choose. A demagogue or the Christ of God?
A Jesus life and along with literacy in the scriptures infills us with the qualities of His person which are: ‘Wonderful, Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.’ The Son of Man is fully God. He joins us to heaven and places heaven within. It’s not hard. Christ in us is the hope and reality of glory.
So what can we say? What if a rogue leader comes to power, largely with the assistance of the Christian vote? We are compelled to examine the possibility that the version of Christianity that put Him there does not know God. What is the response? Repentance in form of seeking His Face.
‘But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see’ Rev 3.16-18 NIV.