Summary: The reigning presence of God’s kingdom always brings justice which is not about someone (s) getting what they deserve … it’s about everyone getting what they need.
“WHEN JESUS COMES: JUSTICE”
(Advent 2010, Week #1)
Sermon Objective: The reigning presence of God’s kingdom always brings justice which is not about someone (s) getting what they deserve … it’s about everyone getting what they need.
The word Advent means "coming" or "arrival." The focus of the entire season is the celebration of the birth of Jesus the Christ in his First Advent, and the anticipation of the return of Christ the King in his Second Advent.
Advent is marked by a spirit of expectation, anticipation, preparation, and longing. There is a yearning for deliverance from the evils of the world, first expressed by Israelite slaves in Egypt as they cried out from their bitter oppression. It is the cry of those who have experienced the tyranny of injustice in a world under the curse of sin. It is the hope of deliverance by a God who hears our cries.
It is that hope, however faint at times, in a God, however distant He seems at times, that sustains us. It brings to the world the anticipation of a King who will rule with truth and justice over His people and in His creation.
Part of the expectation also anticipates a judgment on sin and a calling of the world to accountability before God. We long for God to come and set the world right! Yet, as the prophet Amos warned, the expectation of a coming judgment at the "Day of the Lord" may not be the day of light that we might want, because the penetrating light of God’s judgment on sin will shine just as brightly on God’s people.
The exposure of our sin is intended and designed to prepare us to receive God’s pardon, mercy and grace. In turn we are prepared to worship and be in His presence. Advent, you see, brings us full circle.
It is this understanding of Advent that spawned this year’s sermon series, “When Jesus Comes.” As we will see, when Jesus comes (whether it be the first Advent, His coming into the heart of an individual through His Spirit, His visitation to a congregation, or the final consummation of all things in His Second Return) it brings:
• WEEK #1, JUSTICE (REV. 11:15-17)
• WEEK #2, JUDGMENT (REV. 11:18)
• WEEK #3, JUSTIFICATION (REV. 11:19)
• WEEK #4, JUBILATION (REV. 12:1-17)
SERMON TEXT: REV. 11:15-17
15The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said: "The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he will reign for ever and ever." 16And the twenty-four elders, who were seated on their thrones before God, fell on their faces and worshiped God, 17saying: "We give thanks to you, Lord God Almighty, the One who is and who was, because you have taken your great power and have begun to reign.
The Kingdom of God coming to earth has always been the backdrop of the Scriptures and the ultimate objective of salvation (maybe even creation). His reign among men is certainly the climax of redemption. He did not come just to save our souls … it is to commune with us … to live among us. In Mark 1:14-15 (ESV) we read: “Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God, and saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.”
The New testament’s writers wrote of Advent; knowing that the Kingdom had come. This includes John.
The key verse(s) of the book of “The Revelation” is 21:1-4 (emphasis on v. 3).
1Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. 2And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. 4 He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away." (ESV)
Scripture shows us that Advent, God’s coming kingdom, is a premise behind every theme in the Bible; both Old and New Testaments.
• If you talk about redemption … you are talking about God’s coming and realized Kingdom.
• If you talk about evangelism … you are talking about God’s coming and realized Kingdom.