Realizing the presence, promise, and power of the Kingdom of God.

DEEP Studies

Jesus is marching to the cross, and tells His disciples this, but they don’t understand. He continues to teach about the Kingdom of God and people continue to miss the point, or even oppose things.
Jesus is directly asked by a ruler, “What must I do to inherit eternal life?” He knows the ruler’s heart, and knows his claims of goodness are bogus, so He answers with a command He knows the ruler won’t obey. But before this conversation, Jesus teaches some lessons on how to really get saved. You must receive the kingdom as a little child. You must humble yourself. You must pray incessantly. You must be always prepared, for no one knows when the end times will be.
The kingdom of God has arrived and is in the midst of them. The era of the law and the prophets is over. Everyone wants in, but they can’t see it because they’re looking for the wrong thing. Jesus preaches the kingdom, while performing the signs that prove it’s here.
The prodigal son parable gets into some deep concepts. Then Jesus tells the parable of the dishonest manager, who gets praised for his shrewdness. Lastly, Jesus applies this parable by explaining that worldly wealth will go away. The lessons aren’t easy, but they’re as valuable as they are difficult.
Jesus uses parables to teach things his listeners don’t want to hear. Forget the status thing. You must count the cost – even hating your father and mother – for following Him. We don’t celebrate the way we should. Like the prodigal son, we chase the wrong things.
Jesus teaches that the kingdom will grow gradually, like a mustard seed, that few will be saved, that the first will be last, and that he who humbles himself will be exalted.

Jesus says a number of frightening things. There will be division – father against son. To whom much is given, much will be required. You’re just as bad as those who were killed by Pilate (or by a falling tower). This is all quite shocking, but the disciples need this wake-up call.

Jesus’s teaching focuses on what’s important and what’s not. Beware of the dangers the Pharisees represent, especially blasphemy of the Holy Spirit. The end could come at any moment. Are you prepared? What is your treasure? Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Jesus’s warns against complacency and looking for signs. But the Pharisees and lawyers get a stronger heads up. They’re looking for all the wrong things.
Jesus’ teaching now gets complicated. He’s challenging his disciples to understand and follow difficult commands, while still keeping some things secret. Everyone He interacts with gets their mind stretched.
The message of the kingdom of heaven gets more advanced as Jesus challenges His disciples to abandon worldly priorities. Kingdom power advances too when Jesus sends out six dozen followers and gives them more permanent powers than He gave the twelve.
At last, Peter gets it and announces who Jesus is. This is roundly confirmed on the mount of transfiguration. This leads to the next level of revelation – crucifixion. The apostles aren’t going to understand this until after it happens.

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