The Kingdom Is Within & Among You
As Jesus and his disciples made their way into Jerusalem to take part in the Passover celebration before the Lord’s crucifixion, the twelve were overwhelmed by the Jewish temple, the beautiful buildings and structures which adorned the streets of the Great City. When pointing this out to the Lord, He was not very impressed. His reply, “…not one stone will be found on top of another.” He did not put much emphasis on building structures, outward adornments or lavish relics when referring to maintenance of a relationship with God.
In the book of Luke, 17th chapter, the Pharisees came to Jesus to ask Him when the Kingdom of God will arrive. His response was that the Kingdom of God does not come with any outward observation, but that, “the Kingdom of God is within you.” Now there is some debate as to whether Jesus was saying that the Kingdom is “within us” as individuals or “among us” as a group. To me, both are correct; the Kingdom of God is within us and among us. Christ is in our heart and we are able to converse with Him now; we have a comforter, the Spirit of truth with us always (John 14:16-17).
He is also among us as we gather together as believers. Matthew 18:20 tells us that where two or more are gathered in the Lord’s Name, He is there in our very midst. Last Thursday evening as we gathered together for the hoedown, the Lord was there. The Kingdom of God is not in a building, a piece of furniture, a stone relic or a golden altar. As much as I love our chapel, its conduciveness for prayer and its functionality for worship, God does not reside within its walls unless we are there. He entered the room at the arrival of each and every Christian believer gathering in His name. He resides within the heart of each Christian and in the midst of every gathering of His people. The Kingdom of God is within you and among you; aren’t you glad?