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Topic: Kingdom of God

The Spirit, the Kingdom and Politics

Following a recent article in the New York Times, Scott revisited some of the questions raised by Greg in his sermon series, “The Cross and the Sword.” As a new pastor at Woodland Hills, he told about how he first learned of the sermon series and the responses people had to it. Discussing the differences between the kingdom of this world and the Kingdom of God, Scott pointed out that as Christians, we are to belong first and foremost to God’s Kingdom, while still being engaged with what is happening in the world, but laying aside political differences when it comes to the body of Christ. Read More 


Bear Hug from a Manger

In an age when rulers were given titles like “savior” and “lord”, the true Savior of the world was born. The birth of Christ brought about a Kingdom that looks very different from the way the kingdoms of this world operate. In a lowly manger, God declared that his Kingdom was not of this world and that his love and salvation would embrace all of human kind. Read More 


Making His-Story

Zachariah’s Song alludes to over 35 different Old Testament scriptures. With the use of phrases like “God of Israel,” “to his people,” “from our enemies,” “his servant David,” and “our father Abraham” the reader of this song should recognize how Zachariah is looking back. But he is not just looking back. He is looking back to look forward. He is using the actions of God recorded in the Old Testament as a backdrop for the even greater things God will do through Jesus Christ. With these allusions we can see how God makes His-Story, how the story of God’s dealings with Israel becomes the story of God redeeming the entire world. Read More 


The Great Reversal

In Mary’s song, she proclaims that God has touched the poor but has rejected the rich. That he has chosen to humble people of power while lifting up the humble. In other words, those who look like they deserve the blessings of God miss out on them. The Kingdom of God is one that is upside down. It is the great reversal that does not make sense to our power-hungry and money-crazed world. God’s view of success evaluates life much differently. The world sees money and power as the sign of success. In the Kingdom, success is defined by what you do with them. Read More 


Already, But Not Yet

“He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever. His kingdom will never end” (Luke 1:32-33). Such were the words of Gabriel to Mary regarding the coming of Jesus. These were words promising that Jesus would be the Messiah, the one who would reign over the earth, bringing peace and victory.So what does it mean for Jesus to reign today or “for everything to placed under his feet” as Paul writes in Eph 1:22? Where is the victory? Read More 


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Just a Nobody from Nowhereville

God sends the angel Gabriel to Mary to tell her that the Lord has shown favor on her. She would conceive Jesus who would be the heir to David and his reign would have no end! Greg spent significant time emphasizing that the way God works is not how we might expect. The fact that God overlooks all of the “usual suspects” when it comes to starting a revolution, and chooses a young peasant girl as the entry point for the King, this demonstrates the character of the Kingdom. It is often just the opposite of what we might expect. Read More 


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Preparing a Highway for the Lord

John the Baptist’s role was to prepare the way for Jesus. The Church has a role that is similar to John’s: just as he prepared the way for Christ 2000 years ago, we too are to prepare the world for the second coming. We are to live today as though Jesus were coming back at any time. We don’t live the way the world lives. We are a part of a revolution. We invest in the Kingdom. We revolt against the status quo. We work to bring about the Kingdom on Earth as it is in heaven. And as we do this, we hasten the Lord’s return. Read More 


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Lessons from the Womb

Greg started out by reading through Luke 1:13-17; Luke 1:42,44; and John 18:36. Luke’s gospel starts with the birth of a revolutionary movement—the beginning of the Kingdom of God. It’s like a mustard seed that though small at first will prove victorious in the end. We, as Christians are to be known by how different we are from the world. That is, how truly we love one another and the world. Read More 


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Living in the Big Story

In this sermon, Greg reinforces the message of the Kingdom of God by helping us see our lives not only in relationship to ourselves and those closest to us, but also in the “big picture” of what God is doing in the world. The Kingdom of God is like a mustard seed that is growing within the world to transform it. It is not only how it impacts our personal lives that matters, but also how our personal lives participate in the larger Kingdom efforts that God is calling us to. Read More 


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A Little Yeast

Everything in our lives is connected in some way to every other thing in our lives. We must be aware of this if we are truly to root out sin and manifest the Kingdom of God. The biblical image is that of yeast leavening a whole lump of dough, which is used both positively (Mat. 13:33) and negatively (2 Cor. 5:16). Sin—including festering anger, unforgiveness, resentment—works like yeast to penetrate deep into the lives of those affected; likewise, the Kingdom of God works like yeast transforming the whole for good as well. Therefore, we cannot really compartmentalize our lives. And as we begin to cooperate with the yeast of the Kingdom of God in our lives, we quickly find the world resisting us. Read More 


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