There are many thoughts and opinions on the kingdom of God, and most of the time those thoughts and opinions are correct in some way, but sometimes they are unbalanced. I think every concept on the kingdom can be driven into a ditch. I feel confident in that statement because I have done it, I have even done it on this blog. I have taken a thought or kingdom concept that is correct, and surrounded it with supporting information without also including the scriptures that bring balance to the thought. So I thought I might write about some opposing concepts, and some of the ditches that each can fall into.
There are some people who become hyper focused on building, obtaining, and conquering for the kingdom, but they forget that there is a social part of the gospel message, and there really is injustice in the world. On the opposite extreme you have people that say there is no point in building anything, and that the only thing that matters is getting people saved to leave this world because it is already too far gone (I have written more specifically about this in other parts of this series). One side wants to ignore the inconvenient truth of injustice and build, while the other side wants to ignore building and escape the world.
Building without balance can lead to disaster. If you were to do a little research on homelessness on the west coast of America right now you would find that it is growing into a very serious problem. Through the explosion of tech. companies (mostly) the west coast is building itself into having a serious problem on its hands. There are people with good jobs that are homeless because the growth has forced them out of the market. Building without balance can also lead the heart astray. There is a reality that giving handouts can cripple a people group; however, there is also the reality that first world countries sometimes build at the expense of third world countries. When a first world country extracts $20 for every $2 (made up numbers) they give to a third world country the heart has been led astray. In some cases it’s not handouts that are crippling people, it is injustice. Sometimes it’s not the handouts(just to state it plainly for balance, sometimes it is the handouts), it is the theft. Unbalanced capitalism can lead to injustice. When socialism takes from those that do, and gives it to those that don’t, that is injustice. When communism takes everything from the people, and the government decides what you get regardless of your work, that is injustice. The point is that everything has a ditch that we can fall into.
I have written more on the building side this time because as I said before, I have written about the other extreme more previously. On one side we have to look out for ditches like nationalism, triumphalism, and so on. On the other side we have to look out for ditches like defeatism, escapism, and so on.
So there is building, and there is also bringing justice where there is injustice. There is the preaching of the salvation message, and there is the preaching of the kingdom message. Although I would really just say there is preaching the gospel of Jesus as it contains both of those and more.
Both extremes can be said to contain truth, but left unbalanced I think they can both become wrong. When the extremes are put together it brings balance, and I think that balance gets us to a closer truth of kingdom expression.
As I’ve said before, I don’t know if I’m right, But hopefully I have got you thinking, and eager to dig into the word of God for yourself.
God is for you, and I am for you!