The Coming of the Realm of God

“Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.” Mark 1

If Advent is preparation for the celebration of the coming of Jesus, then this must relate to the coming of the “kingdom” of God–or I have seen it translated as “realm”. Over the centuries, the intent has changed a few times from anticipation of the second coming to celebration of the first. In modern times the meaning has become centered as “Jesus’s birthday”, something which it obviously is not, at least not literally, since he was almost certainly not born in December.

Jesus said it was the “good news” (Greek: gospel) that the realm of God is here. Now.

The Mediterranean world at the time was filled with spiritual anticipation. The time was ripe for something to happen.

And Jesus came proclaiming the message that we can now live a different kind of life within the realm of God, with different rules, upending the worldview of the Romans–vestiges of which continue to exist in power politics and rule of violence and power.

But we can choose to live by Jesus’s example and teaching and live a different kind of life.

That is something to celebrate this season as we momentarily dust off old concepts like peace and good will and joy. Maybe we try to keep them alive all year.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: