Accused of being the very opposite of who He is, Jesus refuted the Pharisees by pointing to the way that spiritual reality exists and works. It does not exist and work as chaos does as seen in our visible realm. But rather, it moves and functions in a strict and regulated order.
In the last series of posts, we mentioned the economy and government of the Kingdom of God. These also exist in the kingdom of darkness as counterfeit versions. Let’s take a look at another story of Jesus to illustrate this:
Luk. 7:1-10 [NIV]
1When Jesus had finished saying all this in the hearing of the people, he entered Capernaum. 2There a centurion’s servant, whom his master valued highly, was sick and about to die. 3The centurion heard of Jesus and sent some elders of the Jews to him, asking him to come and heal his servant. 4When they came to Jesus, they pleaded earnestly with him, “This man deserves to have you do this, 5because he loves our nation and has built our synagogue.” 6So Jesus went with them.
He was not far from the house when the centurion sent friends to say to him: “Lord, don’t trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. 7That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed. 8For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”
9When Jesus heard this, he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd following him, he said, “I tell you, I have not found such great faith even in Israel.” 10Then the men who had been sent returned to the house and found the servant well.
It is amusing to see that even Jesus was surprised by this Gentile’s faith; it is also sad. Obviously, the nature and way of the spiritual Kingdom of God is an unknown territory for the religious Jews of the day. They were supposed to be the ones teaching others the way of God.
But upon a closer examination of the story, we see how Jesus Himself understood and moves in the order of the Kingdom of God, which is constituted in a governmental way with authority and power granted to offices that would function within.
This was the design of God when He created everything, which is ordered and has boundaries. There are heavenly bodies and earthly ones; there are seasons and times, etc. These were created for the revelation of His wisdom, glory and power. And He created Man in His image and likeness and gave Him the position to represent Him to govern everything on His behalf. Tragically, Man forfeited this privilege and Satan usurped his position in the earthly realm as an extension of His rebellion against God. He is called the prince and ruler of this world. His kingdom is a kingdom of lawlessness and pride.
However, Man is not without hope. God sent His Son and released us from this powerless place and restored everything back to us. Jesus came, died and was resurrected to open the way to eternal life and re-instituted a place of authority and power for Man. With this in mind, He discipled the Apostles and empowered them to do the same:
Matt. 28:16-20 [NIV] 16Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
This post is _Part 2_ in the series Spiritual Reality, Order, and Wisdom. To continue with this series, click on Pt 3. To use this as a growth tool to better understand your own calling, you might start by reading the explanation of this series and Pt 1.
Photo credit: Island Girl