Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Is That the Kingdom of God?

I was listening to a retired pastor speak about an NGO he started. He began his discussion by asking his audience, "If an alien came to earth and asked you, 'What is the kingdom of God?' what would you say?" I was thinking through my answer when he gave me the "correct" answer. It was a version of an answer that I think many people would have given. He gave us the address of his NGO (non-profit business that serves the needy in third world countries). His organization was what the kingdom of God was all about. As he described what his organization did, I thought it was great. It did a lot of great things. There seemed to be kingdom people working on this project seeking to do good things to serve humanity. But it was not the kingdom of God. As he described the people who worked there, he bragged that there were Methodists, Baptists, Catholics, a Muslim and even a "devout" atheist who worked there. Again, it sounded great. But it wasn't the kingdom.
Here is my point (and it may be controversial with some), unless involves repentance and being born from above (implying allegiance to King Jesus), the organization is not the kingdom of God. By its nature and description, bringing people under the allegiance of King Jesus (which implies transforming communities as precursors of new creation) is the kingdom of God. Not merely doing good works.
(By the way, my writing project on the Kingdom of God is almost edited and proofread. I am looking to sell it to raise money for mission project/sabbatical leave. If you are interested, I'll be posting information on how to buy it soon.)