Getting ready for Heaven? No so fast!
If you ask what the most important thing is for a Christian we might respond by saying “getting saved so we can go to Heaven.” Certainly getting saved is highly important. It is the entry point into God’s kingdom. Unfortunately many Christians have misunderstood Jesus and what it means to follow him. Many believers after giving their life to Jesus are simply waiting for Jesus to return. While they wait they might seek to become a better person but their focus is on a future kingdom not a present one. The Sermon on the Mount is Jesus way of saying Heaven is important but it is not the end of the World. In other words God did not save us just too simply wait around. His Kingdom has begun now. Jesus expects us to be about bringing his kingdom here on Earth. It is interesting that when we look at the life of Jesus, he says very little about Heaven. But he says tons about Earth. Even when we read the phrase “Kingdom of Heaven” this does not mean some future event. It is talking about the Kingdom of Heaven here on Earth. It means that Jesus because of his death and Resurrection is now King of the Earth ruling from Heaven. So what does this mean as we read the Sermon on the Mount?
We have been sharing in our Revolution series that the Sermon on the Mount was meant to be a new community here on Earth. It was to be a community that had no allegiance to any worldly communities. Christians have one King and that is Jesus. Since we have one King we know that God wants us to live as Kingdom people not waiting to go to Heaven but seeking to bring Heaven on Earth. Jesus taught his disciples in Matthew 6:10 to pray in this manner. Pray that God’s will be done here on Earth as it is in Heaven. How can we honor God’s request of being Kingdom people now and not just in the future? Jesus gives example after example. Here are just a few.
Continually forgive people hurt you Always seek to be a peacemaker in your family community and the World Fight the urge to be angry and show love Love enemies, this means all kinds Fight for your marriage even if you think it is not worth fighting for Show compassion by serving the “least of these” in society Don’t judge people but love them regardless of who they are Daily hunger for God
All of these instructions are “now things” which Jesus wants his Kingdom people to be living out in the present. Certainly we want to be excited about our future Hope when we have new resurrected bodies but Jesus wants us to get excited about his Kingdom now. The Revolution has begun! Let’s live it NOW