Sunday Morning Podcast October 13, 2019. Bro. Andy Gallagher.
TEXT: MICAH 5:2 But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting. He came to us to be a ruler.
ISAIAH. 9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. He came as Wonderful, a Counselor, Mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
LUKE 2:14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. He came to bring peace toward all men!
The people were waiting for the wonderful time for the kingdom to come! Expecting to be freed from the governing over them, in literal terms. But Gods’ ways are not our ways! God’s thoughts are higher than our thoughts! God’s desire is to bring a kingdom much better than man’s concepts. He brings the world an access to a much more beautiful kingdom! John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness to “Repent! The kingdom of heaven is at hand!” (Matthew 3:1,2) “…..Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make His paths straight!” Matthew 3:3 John the Baptist was preparing the way of the Messiah! Matthew 4:1-11, This passage is an account of Jesus being tempted in the wilderness after fasting 40 days and nights. While He was in a weakened condition, Satan was allowed to “test” Him. Jesus was true and victorious, so we could be also! In Matthew 10:5-7, Then Jesus instructed the disciples to go to the lost house of Israel, and to also preach “The kingdom of heaven is at hand!” In Matthew 3:2 again, we see that “Repent!” is the first word commanded. In the first two chapters of Genesis, is the record of all the days of the creations. It was the culmination of when God then created man (Adam and Eve) in His image. Adam and Eve had a beautiful relationship with God! They had a most perfect and beautiful home in the garden of Eden, which is typified to be much like we would regard Paradise. But then man fell away from God through sin. God allowed Satan through a serpent to tempt Eve and Adam to take of that which He had forbidden them to. They now could no longer be allowed to live in the paradise garden. God through angels, had them cast them out. Man was now “forever” separated from God, because of sin. Only the later promise of the Savior would offer redemption and a reunification. God had created a beautiful world, with His many awesome creations! But man continued to spiral down further in the depths of sin. In Genesis 6:5 “And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. God had thoughts toward man of long-suffering, until grief of their great sins, caused Him to regret He had ever made mankind. God’s heart had been broken at man’s betrayal !
Where there is sin, there comes also negative emotions of depression, guilt, shame, etc. There then can be no place to live without these “dark places!” But God’s message to all, then, is, “The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand! This kingdom of heaven is real!! This is why Jesus saved us, to give peace on earth. In our earthly hearts and lives! “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6 The kingdom of heaven is at hand! Not everyone will get in. There is a prerequisite for the kingdom of heaven. Repentance! You must repent! Be truly remorseful for your “deeds” …beyond mere words. You must be sorrowful, ask for forgiveness,…..then turn away from sin! When forgiven, we must also have forgiveness for others! When we apply this command, we will begin to think differently. Act differently. Be holy. Imagine, now toward God our thoughts can be love and obedience continually, instead of sinful. You have gone down the road of sin, now you can turn and make good choices, bringing a good life. Good News! Not of earthly choices, but choices to live where your redeemed mind and heart is. Heavenly places! “And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: ” Ephesians 2:6 Many looked for a literal kingdom. But Luke 17:20,21 says, “And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation. Neither shall they say, Lo here! lo there! for behold, the kingdom of God is within you.” God wants us to focus on the kingdom of heaven. Don’t focus on the negative things of the earth. The kingdom of heaven is at hand! We can set our minds on things above. Because we were created to be human, we will have human desires. When we keep our focus above, we won’t return to sin. We will get out of that negativism that will take us spiraling downward. God has help and victory for us!
The Kingdom of Heaven.……