7 July 2016
Jesus puts a tremendous offer out there! “The Kingdom of heaven is at hand,” he says: The sick will be cured; the dead will be raised; lepers will be cleansed; and demons will be driven out. That’s a pretty good deal. Who could possibly reject it? I mean, who would say: “No, but thanks; I’d rather not have the Kingdom of heaven.”
Well, Jesus knew that somebody would. A lot of people in our world today reject the gospel and all that the Kingdom has to offer. But why would they do that? My guess is that there are a lot of different reasons why.
From the Prophet Hosea we’re reminded that sometimes—oftentimes, God works in little, everyday ways; like a parent who does all the little things that come with raising a child. But does that child (even a grown child) recognize all those little things? No, not always. Maybe people reject the gospel because they expect the Kingdom to be perpetually flashy and vibrant—something you can’t miss. In reality, though, the Kingdom is often in those little moments of mercy and kindness which are all too easily overlooked.
Maybe some other people reject the Kingdom because the Church herself sometimes fails to be an ambassador of that Kingdom. As hard as it is to admit, sometimes the people of God can be hypocritical—clergy and laity alike. And who would want to be part of the Kingdom of God if hypocrisy is part of it?
And I suspect some people in the world reject the Kingdom and all it stands for because . . . well, maybe they just don’t want it. I’m sure we all know people who’re simply content to be grumpy, or angry, or upset. They don’t want the Kingdom; they don’t want to be at peace.
Jesus puts a tremendous offer out there . . . the Kingdom of heaven: where there is genuine love, healing, the chasing away of demons, and new life in abundance. It’s an offer that’s too good to pass up. The Kingdom of heaven is at hand! But it’s up to each of us to either accept it, or reject it. But who would reject it? Who would reject it?