By Pastor Daphne Yang
Concerning the Kingdom of God, the prophet Isaiah says “Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end, upon the throne of David and over His Kingdom, to order it and establish it with judgment and justice, from that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.”
Covid or no Covid, God is on His throne and “of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end.” This theme of the kingdom is a very significant one in Scripture and in God’s Kingdom, everything is forever. God’s sovereign hand is in control over all the affairs of this world and His Kingdom cannot be defeated.
The current pandemic has had a huge global impact and new concerns are emerging every now and then; when will it end or will the pandemic end? When Jesus resurrected and ascended to heaven, He was coronated and now reigns over His Kingdom and He taught His disciples to pray like this, “Thy Kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”
Which kingdom we are going to serve will have effect on the choices we make. Are we going to serve the kingdom of this world which is passing or are we going to serve Christ and His Kingdom which will have no end? The role of the church is to make this invisible kingdom visible when we bear witness to the reality of the kingship of Christ in our lives.
Are we going to serve the kingdom of this world which is passing or are we going to serve Christ and His Kingdom which will have no end?
When the Lord completely has His way, when he is running the show, this Kingdom of God will manifest in this world by the way we live – through our families, our jobs and in every sphere of life. We do this because we are citizens of heaven and subjects of the King, and this is how things would be like if Jesus was in charge.
This pandemic has opened for us an amazing multi-faceted way to manifest Christ, from the enormous economic and financial turmoil, the surfacing of societal inequalities to the emotional distress and the need for breakthrough in medical challenges. These have witnessed the sparks of community life throughout the pandemic.
New bonds have been created leading to the possibility of building stronger communities, developing community with neighbours looking after each other, and friends checking in on one another. The main take away is for us to stay tuned into these issues when the pandemic eventually subsides.
If Christians are in these communities and societies – where God is – restoring relationships, assuring love and working towards justice, mercy and peace, we could possibly rebuild a post-Covid world that looks more like the Kingdom of heaven.
God is at work around and within the pandemic and often, God can intentionally allow situations to go from bad to worse, to give them up to the consequences of human sin and foolishness, so to open our eyes to the ignorance, arrogance and presumption that drives societies towards self-destruction.
Whatever that may be happening, remember God is at work within the pandemic and is revealing to us what we must attend to.
There could be existing fractures which were visible to some but will now become more apparent to all. The exposure of failing healthcare systems and other systems in our communities, to reveal cracks and potentially diminishing public services. These global consequences are to complete God’s vision for the Kingdom, keeping our mind and vision on the future.
Proverbs 1:28-31 says, "Then they will call on me, but I will not answer; they will seek me diligently, but they will not find me. Because they hated knowledge and did not choose the fear of the Lord, they would have none of my counsel and despised my every rebuke. Therefore, they shall eat the fruit of their own way, and be filled to the full with their own fancies.”
God’s purpose is not always about judgement and punishment, as some are inclined to conclude, but He desires to complete His Kingdom purpose. Through the Holy Spirit, He works to reveal sin and all its consequences rejecting the injustices, systemic corruption, and idolatries of nations even to uncover and expose.
Let’s stay the course towards the Kingdom, filling the earth towards the renewal of all things. Whatever that may be happening, remember God is at work within the pandemic and is revealing to us what we must attend to. Proverbs 1:33 concludes with this assurance, “But whoever listens to me will dwell safely, and will be secure, without fear of evil."