Sermon for Sunday, March 26, 2023

The Kingdom of God: Have you received the Holy Spirt?

Luke 17:20-37

Luke 17:20–37 (NIV): 20 Once, on being asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, Jesus replied, “The coming of the kingdom of God is not something that can be observed, 21 nor will people say, ‘Here it is,’ or ‘There it is,’ because the kingdom of God is in your midst.”

22 Then he said to his disciples, “The time is coming when you will long to see one of the days of the Son of Man, but you will not see it. 23 People will tell you, ‘There he is!’ or ‘Here he is!’ Do not go running off after them. 24 For the Son of Man in his day will be like the lightning, which flashes and lights up the sky from one end to the other. 25 But first he must suffer many things and be rejected by this generation.

26 “Just as it was in the days of Noah, so also will it be in the days of the Son of Man. 27 People were eating, drinking, marrying and being given in marriage up to the day Noah entered the ark. Then the flood came and destroyed them all.

28 “It was the same in the days of Lot. People were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building. 29 But the day Lot left Sodom, fire and sulfur rained down from heaven and destroyed them all.

30 “It will be just like this on the day the Son of Man is revealed. 31 On that day no one who is on the housetop, with possessions inside, should go down to get them. Likewise, no one in the field should go back for anything. 32 Remember Lot’s wife! 33 Whoever tries to keep their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life will preserve it. 34 I tell you, on that night two people will be in one bed; one will be taken and the other left. 35 Two women will be grinding grain together; one will be taken and the other left.” [36]

37 “Where, Lord?” they asked.

He replied, “Where there is a dead body, there the vultures will gather.”

The Gospel of Luke is indeed a fascinating and in-depth look at the life and ministry of Jesus.  While our story from last week has Jesus making his triumphal entry on what would be known as Palm Sunday, Luke has Jesus doing multiple things between his anointing by Mary and his triumphal entry into Jerusalem.  The biggest teaching that is worth investigating is Jesus’ teaching about the kingdom of God.  Amazingly, Jesus was quite direct and plain in his description.

  1. The kingdom is already here (vs 21)
  2. The kingdom is present even when Jesus wouldn’t be around in person (vs 22)
  3. The ushering in of the kingdom is quick and will cover the whole world (vs 24)
  4. They will see it for themselves first-hand (vs 25)
  5. As the flood of Noah destroyed, the kingdom of God will also destroy (sin and death) (vs 26)
  6. Lot saw fire from heaven, so will this generation (the fire of the Holy Spirit) (vs 29-30)
  7. Jesus’ rapture (the hearts that turn to God) (vs 31-36)
  8. Hearts will be drawn to the empty tomb (vs 37)

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