Big Idea: The Gospel is good news and bad news depending on our response.
Purpose: To respond to the Gospel by recognizing Jesus’ kingship and joining his mission.
Introduction: Have you ever really looked forward to something, only to be really disappointed?
For instance: my birthday last year
This is going to happen on a much more cosmic scale. We’re going to see this in one of the climactic events of Jesus’ life.
Jesus tells a story (11-27) to interpret what happens (28-44). He wants us to understand why the Gospel can be not only everything we hoped for, but why it can also be very bad news as well:
One: The Gospel is about the kingship of Jesus (12)
This story mirrored actual events – Herod in 40 BC and Archelaus in 4 BC went to Rome to receive ruling authority from the emperor. There was a public outcry against Archelaus.
What does the story of an absent king come from? We usually interpret it to refer to the period between Jesus’ resurrection and return. It’s not a parable about his second coming. It’s explaining what Jesus was doing and what it meant in coming to Jerusalem. He was challenging his listeners to see and understand this event as the long awaited return of Israel’s God, the sovereign and rightful king.
Two: The responses to the Kingship are mixed
- outright rebellion; rejection of the kingship
- acceptance of his kingship and mission
- acceptance of his kingship but neglect of his mission
It’s that last one that gets me. Israel was to be a light to the nations, on mission with God to bless the world. They accepted his kingdom, but they didn’t invest their lives in the mission of God.
Three: The return of the King is good news and bad news depending on our response
- acceptance of his kingship and mission (16-19) – Note different results
- acceptance of his kingship but neglect of his mission (20-26)
- outright rebellion (27)
Actual return of the king(42-48)
The real question I want to ask you is: what is your response to the Kingship of Jesus? You can make two mistakes:
One: Rejecting his kingship
Two: Neglecting his mission (missio Dei) – As a church and individually; to live for more than yourself; to be an agent of the kingdom and make it your primary concern
But who can endure the day of his coming? Who can stand when he appears? For he will be like a refiner’s fire or a launderer’s soap. He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver; he will purify the Levites and refine them like gold and silver. Then the Lord will have men who will bring offerings in righteousness, and the offerings of Judah and Jerusalem will be acceptable to the Lord, as in days gone by, as in former years. (Malachi 3:2-4)