Longing for the Kingdom
Today’s reading: Judges 20-21; Luke 11:1-28
25 In those days there was no king in Israel. Everyone did what was right in his own eyes. Judges 21:25
2 And he said to them, “When you pray, say: “Father, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come. Luke 11:2
The theme of the book of Judges is “there was no king in Israel [so] everyone did what was right in his own eyes. Especially the final chapters of the book show selected incidents all illustrating this same theme. People disregarded the law. Their worship of God was corrupted. Their marriages were in disarray. There was sexual immorality reminiscent of Sodom and Gomorrah. It is not hard to see that public opinion in Israel would soon favor installing a king. But will a king in Israel solve the problems that existed under the Judges?
Hold that question for a bit and fast forward to the Gospel of Luke where Jesus’ disciples are impressed by His prayer life. They ask for instruction about prayer. Jesus gives them the prayer we usually call “The Lord’s Prayer” with its assortment of sample petitions. After addressing God as Father and praying that His name be held as holy, the Lord gives them this petition, “Your kingdom come.”
Now, back to the earlier question. The kingdom of Israel would not solve the problems of their society, much less the problems of the world. But Jesus came announcing the arrival, or, at least the beginning of the arrival, of the kingdom of God. He also gave His disciples the assignment of praying for the kingdom to come in its fullness.
We have a responsibility to the secular governments or kingdoms we live in now, but ultimately the only government that will last is the kingdom of God ruled by the Prince of Peace and the King of Kings, the Lord Jesus Christ.
Pray that His kingdom may come soon. Today would be a good day for it, don’t you think?