“And he sent them out to preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.” (Luke 9:2, NIV84)
They were on their way. The disciples, that is. They were off to preach the very message that John the Baptist and Jesus started their ministry with: “The kingdom of God is at hand!” God’s kingdom had touched our planet with the most amazing work of redemption. Jesus came to tell us, and show us, that this world and its suffering are not all there is. Now His disciples were going out preaching to the community that Jesus was the promised Messiah and that He was the source of hope, forgiveness, and healing for our bodies and souls.
More than 2,000 years later the message is the same. It gives me chills to think that we share in the same powerful message. The message of the kingdom of God hasn’t grown old or outdated. It hasn’t lost its power. It still has the ability to save, redeem, heal and provide hope and peace to the one who hears and accepts it.
So what keeps this from happening? I believe the No. 1 temptation of Satan in the lives of 21st-century Christians is distractions. There are so many voices speaking to our ears that it is tough to discipline ourselves to hear the right voices. We need to be discerning enough to distinguish between the voices of the kingdom of God and the voices of the kingdom of this world.
May we clearly set our minds on what is above (the kingdom of God).