Series: Kingdom of God; Sonship
Sun am 30 September 2012 – Kobus Swart
Heb. 12:1-29; Ex. 19:18-24; Rev. 21:7; Rev. 1:1 & 12-13 (Moffats); Mark 1:15; Luke 17:20-21
(Matt. 13:19a); (Matt. 5:9); John 18:36; Rom. 14:17
It is no longer a secret – things are shaking in all levels of society worldwide. Even in the Church of God things are shaking. This should not surprise us any longer. The writer of Hebrews reminds us that we “…have not come to a mountain that can be touched and to a blazing fire, and to darkness and gloom and whirlwind, and to the blast of a trumpet and the sound of words which sound was such that those who heard begged that no further word be spoken to them. For they could not bear the command, ‘if even a beast touches the mountain, it will be stoned.’ And so terrible was the sight, that Moses said, ‘I am full of fear and trembling’” (Heb. 12:18-21) Of course this was referring to when the Law was given (Exodus 19:18-24).
Where we are now is different. Look at the contrast between Sinai and Zion. [Mount Zion usually represents the church of the overcomer. The promises in the book of Revelation are written to those who overcome (Rev. 21:7).] But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to myriads of angels, to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood, which speaks better than the blood of Abel (vs. 22-24). Here’s the contrast – we are not at Sinai. We have come to Mount Zion; that is where the Church is now. God is looking for the unshakable kingdom!
See to it that you do not refuse Him who is speaking. While many are looking for signs in nature or manifestations on this planet and beyond, they miss hearing the VOICE of God. “His voice that time shook the earth to its foundations; this time–he’s told us this quite plainly–he’ll also rock the heavens: One last shaking, from top to bottom, stem to stern. The phrase ‘one last shaking’ means a thorough housecleaning, getting rid of all the historical and religious junk so that the unshakable essentials stand clear and uncluttered. Do you see what we’ve got? An unshakable kingdom! …” (Heb 12:26-28 Msg)
John heard a voice, and he turned to see the voice because he was interested in the source. What did he see? In the middle of the 7 lampstands (representing the churches) One who resembled a human being …and he goes on to describe the Son of God, falling before Him like a dead man! (Rev. 1:12-17). This is a picture of the corporate Son (the Son in the sons) whose voice was like the sound of many waters! His voice this time will shake the earth and the heavens!
Jesus, in His resurrection body, for forty days had one message on His heart – the kingdom of God. And this kingdom came in and with Jesus (Mark 1:15). Repentance (change the way you think) was and is the key to seeing and receiving the kingdom. The Pharisees came to Jesus and asked when the kingdom of God would come and Jesus answered that it would not come with signs to be observed, but that the kingdom of God is within you (Luke 17:20-21). We received a kingdom that will not be shaken.
How will that happen? Jesus is our example. Consider Him who, for the joy that set before Him, endured the cross, despising the shame. Now God is dealing with us as sons! How many of you are going through tough times and wonder where God is? Let us not forget the exhortation which is addressed to us as sons, “My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, Nor faint when you are reproved by Him; For those whom the Lord loves He disciplines, And He scourges every son whom He receives.” It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons (Heb. 12:5-8).
God deals with us as with sons. All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness (Heb. 12:9-11). The kingdom of God is righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit (Rom. 14:17). These sons of the kingdom (Cf Matt 13:38) will become the leavening influence in society, and we can only do that when we manifest righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. Blessed are the peacemakers because they will be called sons of God (Matt. 5:9). You do not see the leaven when it is worked into a piece of dough, but you see the impact/effect. The kingdom of God is like leaven (Matt 13:33).
See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many be defiled. If there is unforgiveness in your heart, you are inclined to defile others. Forgive, release! If you don’t, it will fester and become bitterness and you will be hurt by it. That there be no immoral or godless person like Esau, who sold his own birthright for a single meal. That is shortsighted; young people sometimes “sell” their inheritance for a single night of pleasure. For you know that even afterwards, when he desired to inherit the blessing, he was rejected, for he found no place for repentance, though he sought for it with tears. True repentance has very little to do with tears of self pity. Yes, brokenness should be a part of our spirit (Is 66:2), but Esau cried a lot and still he was rejected because he failed to repent.
The shakings are on but Father does not want to demolish what is truly His; in fact, He wants to establish us as sons of the kingdom. Let the chastening and scourging of God take their course, don’t resist it. The kingdoms of this world will become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ as the sons of the kingdom influence all these kingdoms ie. education, music, creativity, politics, commerce, law etc.
God is bringing the standard of heaven and measures what we have done on earth to see if it measures up. He evaluates/weighs what we build. Judgment has indeed begun in the house of God.
Upgrade, renew, refresh – repent! We serve a God who is a consuming fire.