Kingdom of God

Jesus: God’s Gentle Servant

Read: Matthew 12:9-21
Text: Verses 15-21

Notice that our text speaks of salvation in terms of justice. The salvation that Jesus came to bring involves justice. And justice means that our sins cannot just be overlooked and ignored. If anyone’s sin was just overlooked and ignored, there could never be a world of justice and peace and harmony. And what that means is that for Jesus to not break a bruised reed or not quench a smoldering wick, he himself had to absorb the just penalty for sin. For Jesus to be gentle and nurturing to us in our weakness and sinfulness, he had to pay the penalty for our sins. That is the meaning of the cross.
— Rev. Jerry Hamstra

The Fifth Commandment (2) The Nature and Purpose of Authority

Wherever we have authority over others, we are to use that authority in a way that reflects how God uses his authority and that means that it must be a blessing to those who submit to it. God is good. God is love. God punishes the wicked, but his nature is to bless, and his use of his authority reflects that fact. Because of sin, authority sometimes means punishment, but the overall purpose must always be righteousness and goodness and so our use of authority must always be a blessing for those who submit to it. That is rooted in the fact that we are made in the image of God.
— Rev. Jerry Hamstra

Government Corruption and Poverty

Ecclesiastes is saying that it is gain for the land when you have a ruler who is committed to everyone flourishing as much as possible. “But this is gain for a land in every way: a king committed to cultivated fields.” Within the context of Ecclesiastes, corrupt governments are one of the things about life under the sun that is vanity and problematic, while good and just governments are a real gain under the sun. Good governments can be a great means to promote human flourishing.
— Rev. Jerry Hamstra

The Birth of Jesus Foretold

A world in which everything is as it ought to be has been the longing of human beings for almost as long as the world has been around. But there are different visions for that and there are different perspectives on how that might be achieved. The birth of Jesus is at the heart of the biblical vision. And a key part of the biblical vision is that it is the only true vision – that is, the biblical vision is what will actually come into being at the end of the age.
— Rev. Jerry Hamstra