Christian devotions in the Daily-Message

Christian devotions in the Daily-Message

Not of this world

“Jesus answered, ''My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.''

John 18:36
 

In this world (obviously), but also not from this world (hidden). This concerns the eternal Gospel, especially Jesus Christ, but also the newborn believers. In other words, those who call themselves Christian, are also Christians and also remain so before God. The reason is the gifted (invisible) belief in the Messiah and Saviour – God's Son! This ostensible contradiction, on the one hand to be born with a body of flesh, bones and blood on earth, and on the other hand to have spiritual roots (outside of time) in God's Kingdom – in other words not of this world – is so to say our daily bread and our cross. We have a treasure (our holy faith) in earthen vessels, on this planet (2 Corinthians 4:7). With that we live. Also here, Jesus is our example, because God made Himself visible and vulnerable in this paradox and strange (evil) world, and still overcame and fulfilled everything necessary and good (for us) in faith. Without battle it is not possible, but it must be a battle in faith, which is biblically (and thus spiritually) something good. We read this in 1 Timothy 6:12 “Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.” Jesus explained to Pilate that the battle of His disciples (us included) is not about defending any worldly positions or proclaiming new regencies on earth or establishing Lordship and violently taking possession of territorial regions. None of that was important to Jesus, nor was it His intention. This was obviously the general idea of the monarchy. That which has transpired in this manner, in the entire world, since the first century, with its many wars and conflicts, confirms this one hundred percent.

That Jesus had other intentions for His friends (all genuine Christians), we read in Hebrews 13:14 “For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come.” The real positive side of our prescribed battle is that it has a greater meaning for the coming eternal life in God's Kingdom. Presumably more even than we can imagine. On earth it concerns salvation, service and probation under God's caring supervision and in accordance with His will for us. Our time as Christians on earth is meaningful, targeted, valuable and necessary. The latter, because no believer without salvation (nurturing) will see the LORD (Hebrews 12:12-14). The heavenly rewards judgment (the Throne of Christ) will reveal where we behaved appropriately and where not. Heavenly things are in fact more important than earthly things. To seek, in the first instance, after God's Kingdom is to do battle and work with each other (Matthew 6:33). It will be worth it and we are also not alone (Matthew 18:20). It is in fact even better, because God prepares the way, that we walk, work and battle, before us. In Ephesians 2:10 we read: “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” We are not forced to walk on or ask for these paths, but it would indeed be beneficial in every way. We seek and find God's glory there where the Holy Spirit steers us and mobilizes our hands and feet (Romans 8:14). If we strive for that, it is proof of greater quality, that we are in fact (due to our behavior) unequivocally not part of this world.

Amen

(Translated by Linda Gates)

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