Thursday, November 1, 2007

Signs of the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth

Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every sickness and every disease among the people. (Matthew 9:35)
The ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ was to preach the “gospel of the kingdom,” the good news that he kingdom of heaven was now present on earth. He not only preached this, He also demonstrated it by healing every sickness and disease that was brought before Him. The kingdom of God was breaking into the world, but Jesus greatly desired to accelerate it:
But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd. Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.” (Matthew 9:36-38)
The kingdom of Heaven on Earth is a kingdom of harvest. In the very next verse we see the Lord of the Harvest sending forth His laborers to do exactly what He Himself had been doing:
And when He had called His twelve disciples to Him, He gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease ... These twelve Jesus sent out and commanded them, saying: “Do not go into the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter a city of the Samaritans. But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.” (Matthew 10:1, 5-8)
Just as Jesus went about announcing the kingdom of Heaven on Earth, and displaying the signs of the kingdom, He chose His disciples and sent them out to do the same. He gave them power and authority to expel demonic spirits, heal all kinds of sickness and disease, even to raise the dead. For the kingdom of Heaven on Earth is a kingdom of life and wholeness and freedom. These are the signs that the kingdom of heaven truly is present on earth. They have all been performed many times over in the history of the Church, and are coming forth with even greater frequency today.

The Lord Jesus gives power and authority to the disciples of His kingdom to bring forth the signs of His kingdom and gather in the harvest.



The Kingdom of Heaven on Earth

The Kingdom of Heaven on Earth
Keys to the Kingdom of God
in the Gospel of Matthew

by Jeff Doles

Preview with Amazon’s “Look Inside.”

Available in paperback and Kindle (Amazon), epub (Google and iTunes) and PDF.