Scripture: 1Samuel 13:11-14; 1Kings 11:9-13
Now that we are in the season of Advent, we are going to take a break from our sermon series, Church and State. We’ll pick up the second part of the series after Christmas beginning in the New Year. Advent is a time where we anticipate and prepare for the birth of Jesus on Christmas Eve. This preparation is important because it provides us with an opportunity to reflect on why Jesus is important to us as Christians and how Jesus has fundamentally changed our lives.
There are a lot of different tracks you can take when it comes to anticipating Jesus’ presence in the world, but perhaps one of the most important is how Jesus’ birth signaled the beginning of God’s kingdom on earth. What many Christians do not realize is that this idea of God’s kingdom did not start with Jesus. This is an idea that was part of the Jewish religion long before Jesus was born.
Therefore, over the next four weeks of Advent, in anticipation of Jesus’ birth, we are going to talk about where this idea of God’s kingdom came from and why Jesus is the one who finally brought the kingdom of God to fruition in our lives. This sermon series is called, The Kingdom, and each week we will begin by talking about different aspects of history that formed the Jewish understanding of God’s kingdom and then exploring how this history is foundational to our spiritual journey.
This Sunday we begin with the scriptures that launched the whole idea of God’s kingdom—the Kingdom of Israel. We are going to discuss how David, a man after God’s own heart, and his son, Solomon, come to represent the pinnacle of success in God’s kingdom for many of the Jewish people in Jesus’ day. I hear it will be a warm weekend. I hope you can spend some time outside and enjoy what may be the last beautiful weekend before winter! May each of you experience a joyful Advent!