Here is the basic outline of the verbal for this week:
This is the last week in our iTeach series. We’ve looked at a number of parables. My prayer is that you have found this a powerful and profitable series, hearing the messages and stories that Jesus himself shared.
I want to read from the parables, and see if you can identify the common thread:
“You have been permitted to understand the secrets of the Kingdom of God. But I am using these stories to conceal everything about it from outsiders, so that the scriptures might be fulfilled.” Luke 8:10a
“What a privilege it would be to have a share in the Kingdom of God!” Jesus replied with this illustration: “A man prepared a great feast and sent out many invitations.” Luke 14:15-16
“The Kingdom of Heaven can be illustrated by the story of a king who prepared a great feast for his son.” Matthew 22:2
“The Kingdom of Heaven can be illustrated by the story of ten bridesmaids who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom.” Matthew 25:1
“Again, the Kingdom of Heaven can be illustrated by the story of a man going on a trip.” Matthew 25:14
The common theme, in these, and in many of Jesus’ parables, is the Kingdom of God, the Kingdom of Heaven. The danger as we hear this phrase, is that we will think of it as something for the future, something far off. But Jesus used the Kingdom of God to describe what he was inaugurating in the here and now. The Kingdom is already here in this time in between, between his sacrifice and his return.
The Kingdom was what moved Jesus. It is thread that runs through his teaching. He is the King of this new Kingdom, made up of those who have heard and responded to his message. It is a Kingdom of transformed hearts, alert and ready, faithful and responsive. It is the hope for the world, and it lives within us, today.
So as we focus on this last parable of the series, be asking yourself. What is God saying about this time in between, this moment I am in right now? How has he led us to this moment? And how will we respond?