So after Jesus' temptation in the desert, we see the beginning of His public ministry. But it is again very different, from what we would expect. We forget the scandal and shock of this truth, but he does not move to Jerusalem. No, he makes his home in Capernum. And in so doing fulfils prophecy, however, this prophecy is interesting. This prophecy does not speak of this land as a wonderful place to bring up children, or one of the most liveable cities in Judea. No this prophecy talks about the darkness, and the shadow of death. Jesus does not begin in the capital, but rather on the margins.
So we have the Messiah, the Christ, the heir to the throne of David beginning His ministry out in the unwanted lands, among the unimportant people. And who does he pick for companions? Bible scholars? Religious leaders? The charismatic opinion makers of His day? No, he finds some fishermen, and their friends. Again, as this coming king, begins to announce His kingdom, he enlists an army of working class people, from working class lands far away from the pomp of the palace, and the glory of the temple. The kingdom is proclaimed out in the dark places, and the king is the friend of the ordinary bloke.
And what does he do? He heals broken, sick and hurting people. He brings hope to the poor, and cares for those that no one else cares for. This new kingdom does not start in the center, but on the edges. And the king at the center of it all, is a compassionate healer, who takes the time for those that others do not take the time for.
And he announces, repent, for the kingdom of heaven is here. Turn away from your own kingdoms, for this kingdom is here now. And this revolution is starting among the normal everyday average people, in the everyday average neighborhoods.
God's kingdom doesn't start in places of power, and prestige, that is the old way. This new kingdom says the first are last, and the last first. This new kingdom starts not among the elite, but among the castaways. This new kingdom is heralded not from the temple, but from the dessert. And is not come by the voices of the priests, but rather a man of dubious lineage with a ragtag bunch of regular folk. Make no mistake though, the kingdom may start in capernum, and the decapolous, it may start in Riverside, and Sunshine and St. Albans. The march may start out in the fringes, in the trailer parks in Detroit, and the orphanages in Cambodia. And the kingdom revolution may start with fisherman, and builders, and street cleaners. But it always winds up confronting the powers that be. It may not start in Melbourne or Canberra, but it will wind up there. It may not start in the white house in Washington DC but it will march upon those steps. It may not start on the hills of Rome, but it will change everything there.
It is time we understand that this revolution starts with people like us, that believe a new way of life. That believe the promises of this world are hollow, untrue and fleeting. It is time we understand that as we walk out the kingdom of God, from our small places, and in our small lives that we will shake the world. Because it is always so, when the kingdom of God comes, eventually all other kingdoms will fall. Remember the gates of hell will not prevail against the church.
It is also time we realize that the only way this ever gets overthrown, is when we sell out the kingdom of God, for the kingdoms of this world, including the kingdom of the church.
I pray that the spirit of revolution will awaken in me, and in you.