Overlooking the Kingdom

January 27, 2020 at 1:44 pm | Posted in Luke | Leave a comment
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And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.

Luke 17:20-21

Jesus answered the Pharisees’ question, but He reserved the details for the Disciples. People were especially expectant for a deliverer around the time of Passover. Moses was the deliverer at the first Passover. John the Baptist showed some promise but he had ultimately not panned out as the deliverer. Jesus seemed like a strong possibility, and He was headed to Jerusalem! The Pharisees had been listening to Jesus for about three years and they wanted to know when the Kingdom of God would appear! How sad that they were so opposed or obtuse concerning Who Jesus was. They were like patrons walking into a serve-yourself buffet restaurant, hungry, but just sitting down and waiting for a waiter to bring food.

And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation:

Luke 17:20 (emphasis added)

The Pharisees’ “observation” amounted to hiding and looking, following secretly, and faithless testing. They acted like James Bond, when any run-of-the-mill investigator could have told them Who Jesus was in the Kingdom of Heaven.

Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.

Luke 17:21

The Kingdom was “within” their midst, but it did not penetrate the hearts of the Pharisees. The Deliverer was not some obscure person hiding in a monastery somewhere. He was the one Who had been healing blind people, raising the dead, curing lepers, saying, “I’m the One.

Christians should study future prophecy, but do not let the study of prophecy overshadow ACTIVITY. Expect the coming of the Lord Jesus not by waiting and watching idly, but by staying busy until He comes back.

Signs of the End Times?

October 16, 2019 at 10:05 am | Posted in Q&A | 3 Comments
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Question: It seems like every year somebody comes up with some sign of the end times, whether it’s lunar or solar eclipses, natural disasters, or some political figure who is secretly supposed to be the Antichrist, and there are all these preachers or internet prophets who have supposedly been given visions that the world will end at a certain time. Isn’t it silly to pay attention to these things?

Answer: Well, I would be cautious about mocking people who are interested in these things. Certainly, there are charlatans and frauds who promote end times prophecies in order to make money or get attention, and the majority of them seem to be severely lacking in sound Biblical support. However, as Christians looking forward to the return of Jesus, I can certainly understand the desire to be aware of how current events might or might not be signaling the approach of the fulfillment of Biblical prophecy (II Peter 3:12-13; II Timothy 4:8; Titus 2:13).

There are two competing ideas at work here. Jesus rebuked the Jewish leaders for their insistence on seeing miraculous or prophetic “signs” that would demonstrate the credibility of Jesus’s ministry. He rightfully rebuked them as being part of a wicked, adulterous, and sign-seeking generation (Matthew 16:1-4; Mark 8:11-12; Luke 11:16-29). However, when His Disciples asked Him about the sign of His coming and the end of the world, He gave them a good bit of information (Matthew 24), without chastising them.

The key for us today is to focus more on getting ready for the return of Christ by living holy lives, and staying busy carrying out His great commission (Matthew 28:19-20), than on idly (or obsessively) speculating on dates or trying to match current events to some of the apocalyptic language in Scripture. However, I would certainly not want to make fun of anyone who is earnestly trying to understand Biblical prophecy, or who is seeking to view current events and even astronomical phenomena through a Biblical worldview.

The Ultimate Confession

July 5, 2016 at 9:58 am | Posted in Matthew | 5 Comments
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Matthew Chapter 24 explains end-times prophecy concerning Israel. It is talking about Christ’s return after the Tribulation – for Israel – not His return for His Church. At the end of Chapter 24, and on into Chapter 25, the Lord’s discourse changes from Israel to the Church.

There will be loss of rewards at the Judgment Seat of Christ. We have a treasure, which is the Gospel, and we should defend it. However, in defending it, we must not fail to put it to use. Our lights must be kept burning, but they must also be used to shine light.

But he that had received one went and digged in the earth, and hid his lord’s money.

Matthew 25:18

We live in the period of time between this verse and the next one.

After a long time the lord of those servants cometh, and reckoneth with them.

Matthew 25:19

The faithful servants entered into joy, and their joy was not retirement. It was more service. The unfaithful servant didn’t know who his lord was.

Then he which had received the one talent came and said, Lord, I knew thee that thou art an hard man, reaping where thou hast not sown, and gathering where thou hast not strawed:

Matthew 25:24

In his mind he made a lord he wanted to follow and be like. The deceitful leaders of the false charismatic prosperity movement are leading those who want to be deceived. They serve their preachers, not the Lord. They want to be like their preachers and not like the Lord.

We don’t use our talents because the talents are worthy. We use them because the Lord is worthy. He is worthy to be served. He will judge the nations – by judging the individuals who make up the nations. He will judge both the saved and the lost – but in different ways. The saved will yield willingly in acknowledgment of His power. The lost will yield unwillingly when their knees are broken by a rod of iron. The cup of wrath will open their mouths and they will confess Him as Lord. The most pagan ungodly devilish unbeliever knows deep down inside that Jesus Christ is the true King, but he is restraining that truth with all his might. The drinking of the cup of wrath will let the truth out. This confession will not be like a bully twisting a kid’s arm on the playground and making him say “uncle.” The victim is not really the bully’s nephew. The ungodly will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord and it will be 100% true.


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