“In the time of those kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, nor will it be left to another people. It will crush all those kingdoms and bring them to an end, but it will itself endure forever. 45 This is the meaning of the vision of the rock cut out of a mountain, but not by human hands—a rock that broke the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver and the gold to pieces. Daniel 2:44-45 NIV
At the time of Jesus arrival, the hope for change was as high as it could be for the Jewish people. They had been dominated by the Roman empire and were ready for God to establish a renewed Israel. They were looking for a hero, a savior, a Messiah. Why?
500 years before the birth of Jesus, Daniel interpreted a dream for King Nebuchadnezzar which had its fulfillment in the future. Daniel said that the statue in the dream represented four kingdoms in which the King represented the first. Each Kingdom would fall to the next. At the end of the fourth Kingdom a “Rock” would come and destroy all the other kingdoms. That fifth kingdom would establish itself and then reign forever.
The Jewish people understood the meaning of the dream. They had wisemen who had been counting the seasons. Babylonians fell to the Medes and Persians. The Greeks defeated the Persians which established the 3rd kingdom. The Romans secured the end of the Greeks and established a rule for all of the known world. Now was the time for the 5th kingdom to come.
We Jesus started preaching, listen to his first words…”Repent and believe the good news, the kingdom of God is here.” Jesus ushered in the presence of the kingdom of heaven in which we now live. He spent most of his teaching ministry trying to help people understand the values of God that exists within this new kingdom.
Our good news message is rooted in this revelation of the NOW presence of this kingdom in which Jesus is King. Too many, including Christians, are stuck in the values of an earthly mindset. It is as if, we have hope for something that is still to come, without realizing that the kingdom of God is now among us. I know there is a hope in the return of Christ to be joined with His followers. This is only part of the scope of hope in the life of Jesus.
As you celebrate the birthday of Jesus who later takes away the sins of the world, find hope in the present reality of His Kingdom. You can have peace in the middle of your storm…right now. You can have joy that gives strength in the harshest circumstances. You have access to love that is given even while we are the worst sinners. Hope from Jesus can arise in your heart from the ashes of a marred past.
The Christmas season is far more than a celebration of a baby into our world in which wisemen brought gifts. He is Messiah. He is the Savior – taking away our sins. He is Emmanuel – God with us. Everything in life changed when the presence of Jesus ushered in the kingdom that now reigns forever. May you be rescued from the kingdom of darkness and brought into the kingdom of light. May you experience bringing the kingdom of heaven into the realm of the earth. That is a wonderful Christmas message.
Blessings Love y’all