My Kingdom is Not of This World

My Kingdom is Not of This World

John 18:33-36: “So Pilate entered his headquarters again and called Jesus and said to him, ‘Are you the King of the Jews?’ Jesus answered, ‘Do you say this of your own accord, or did others say it to you about me?’ Pilate answered, ‘Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have delivered you over to me. What have you done?’ Jesus answered, ‘My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world.’ Then Pilate said to him, ‘So you are a king?’ Jesus answered, ‘You say that I am a king.’”

There are two realms – the physical realm on earth, which we see by sight, and the spiritual realm in the Kingdom, which we see by faith. These two realms are connected and constantly working together for both good and evil. God sees both realms and, on occasion, lets us see the past, present, and future of both realms through His eyes. This is the point and purpose of prophetic books such as Daniel and Ezekiel in the Old Testament and Revelation in the New – to get God’s perspective.

In the conversation between Pilate and Jesus, it would, at first glance, seem that Pilate works for the bigger Kingdom. Rome was the most powerful empire in the world with the largest military force ruled by King Caesar whom they called Lord. Conversely, Jesus owns no land, holds no office, and commands no army yet His followers persist in calling Him King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

As Jesus confronts the powers of Rome, the two kingdoms and two realms come face to face and head to head. Pilate is most concerned about defending the political clout of king Caesar, but King Jesus has much bigger plans than ruling over the puny Roman Empire. His Kingdom is so big that it does not fit in the realm of this world, and His angelic army is so big that a battle with Rome would have bored them.

The reason Jesus was not seen as a King was because of His humility. He veiled His glory, held back His angelic army, and spent His time serving others rather than being served. Our King came to die that we might live, and rise that we might reign with Him. Our King came to do something far greater and grander than petty politics, He came to unveil a coming Kingdom that will overtake all nations for all generations.

Honestly, do you spend more time and energy fretting about politics or focusing on the Kingdom?

Mark Driscoll
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