It’s common to hear people say and sing that, “Jesus died to save me from my sins”. In this view sin leads to eternal death in hell, and so salvation means being rescued from this punishment and given a place in heaven – or God’s Kingdom – after death.
While there is definitely some truth in this view, it is a limited understanding of Jesus’ mission. It is also not the way that Jesus defined his own ministry. When Jesus spoke of God’s Rule – and when he used Isaiah’s prophecy to describe his ministry – Jesus was referring to something that happens in this life, this side of the grave. He was speaking about a new way of being in the world that helps to bring justice, peace, grace, and love to others.
But Jesus did not fulfill this ministry alone. He called disciples to follow him and work with him. Today, we are Jesus’ disciples called to participate in this liberating work. This means that everything we think, say and do can be a contribution to the Kingdom. It means that the values of God’s Reign should be the focal point of our lives influencing how we treat others, how we use our resources, and how we work, play and rest.
The call of Jesus is to become participants in God’s work of liberating the universe. This means that we need to be captured by a vision of God’s Rule, and of what the world would be like if God’s Rule was fully manifested in it. Today, allow the practice of praise to renew your vision of God’s Reign and to allow this vision to penetrate the deepest part of you.
For your Reign of peace, love, justice and grace, O God, I praise you.