Kingdom Come.

light backgroundThere are two passages I read this morning from my Bible reading plan, in which I see a link. The first was Isaiah 60, which is infused with the glory of God, giving a vision of Zion, the New Jerusalem. God is entering the dark place but there is a hope, a promise that everything can and will be changed:

Arise, shine, for your light has come,
and the glory of the Lord rises upon you.
See, darkness covers the earth
and thick darkness is over the peoples,
but the Lord rises upon you
and his glory appears over you. (60:1-2)

God will be at the centre of their new community, casting his light into every dark corner

The sun will no more be your light by day,
nor will the brightness of the moon shine on you,
for the Lord will be your everlasting light,
and your God will be your glory.
Your sun will never set again,
and your moon will wane no more;
the Lord will be your everlasting light,
and your days of sorrow will end. (60:19-20)

This can quite easily be paralleled with Rev 21-22 , the vision of the heavenly city where:

The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp. The nations will walk by its light, and the kings of the earth will bring their splendor into it. (Rev 21:23-24)

This is all hope for the future, for the final kingdom. But the second passage, part of a longer series of encountered in which we’re invited to ask who Jesus really is, brings this into the present. Jesus is beginning a ministry when he is confronted my two men with demon possession (Matt 8 has two men, the parallel passage in Mark 5 has one who identifies himself as Legion). They are the epitome of darkness, living amongst the tombs and staying well clear of the local town. No-one could pass by them because of their violence. The demons correctly identify Jesus as the Son of God, and they beg him not to destroy them. Jesus casts them out of the men and into a herd of pigs, who then charge down the hillside and are drowned in a lake.

If this isn’t an example of what happens when God’s ‘everlasting light’ meets the darkness, I don’t know what is. The kingdom which we’re promised in Isaiah and which we’re given a vision of in Revelation is coming, and the bearer of this Kingdom cannot have been made more clear.

See, darkness covers the earth
and thick darkness is over the peoples,
but the Lord rises upon you
and his glory appears over you. (60:2)

 

 

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