Saturday, September 17, 2011

Not Far from the Kingdom

And the scribe said to him, “Well said, Teacher! You have spoken truthfully, for there is one God, and there is no other but He, and to love Him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love a neighbor as oneself, is more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.”

And when Jesus saw that he had answered with discretion, he said to him, “You are not far from the Kingdom of God.”

Mark 12:34-36

If we ever really grasp the concept that ceremonies and rituals are worthless in God's kingdom in comparison to the quality of our relationships, and that true righteousness is a matter entirely of the heart, we will not be far from the kingdom of God, either! The kingdom of God is not an outward, fleshly thing (Lk. 17:20; Rom. 14:17a), but is simply “righteousness, peace, and joy in the holy ghost” (Rom. 14:17b). And if in these things you walk with God and others, you please God and are pleased with Him. Walking in the Spirit, you need no ceremonies, but more importantly, you have no desire for them.