Pentecost 26, Saturday, Year C

Inspired by Luke 17:20-37

“Once Jesus was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God was coming, and he answered, ‘The kingdom of God is not coming with things that can be observed; nor will they say, “Look, here it is!” or “There it is!”  For, in fact, the kingdom of God is among you.’”  Luke 17:20-21 (NRSV)

There are so many things wrong with this world, it’s tempting to just sit back and wait for God to come along, fix everything, and establish his kingdom on earth.  Meanwhile we do nothing but catalogue the evils systems that exploit the poor and vulnerable and wonder why God lets such things happen.

Why do we let such things happen?  We have been saved from sin and given new lives in Christ.  We have been called to proclaim the good news of the kingdom of God, and that good news is that the kingdom has come near.  Jesus offered relief for physical suffering and dignity and acceptance to those who were rejected by the powerful.  As his followers we are called to do the same to the greatest extent of our abilities.

Jesus looked at the abusive practices of his day and challenged them.  He did not observe them, catalogue them, and wait for his Father to fix them.  He refused to participate in them even when not doing so went against the social norms for his culture.  He was demonstrating what the kingdom of God was like with his words, actions, and choices.

Only God can bring salvation, but we can help demonstrate what the kingdom of God is like, and we can help establish it here on earth now.

Let us pray.  Sovereign God, your kingdom is one of justice, peace, and love.  Help us to demonstrate those attributes, that people may experience the glory of your reign.  Through Christ our Lord, Amen.