Is Christ really King of the earth – right now?

Jesus talked of “My kingdom” in John 18:36, to a man who understood perfectly what he meant too. That man was Pontius Pilate, who knew all about kingdoms all right, because he represented Rome, the greatest kingdom on earth.

Pilate’s reply to Jesus wasn’t surprising, therefore: “You are a king, then?” verse 37. It may have been said sarcastically, but the point was being established that, yes, Jesus was a king. And Jesus answered Pilate’s question in no uncertain terms too: “You are right in saying I am a king, In fact, for this reason I was born, and for this I came into the world.” Jesus doesn’t back down one bit. He’s saying to the power of Rome, “I’m a king too.” It’s a face-off between the greatest pagan power and the kingdom of God, and Jesus knows he wins, because in a few days time his claim of “I am a king” will be verified by his resurrection from the dead.

So, when did Jesus’ kingdom actually begin? Ephesians 1:20-21 – it began “when God raised Jesus from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the PRESENT AGE but also in the one to come.” So Christ has been king over everything and everybody ever since his resurrection, including our “present age” RIGHT NOW.

But if Christ really is King of the earth right now, why is the earth such a mess still? Shouldn’t he be knocking heads together and putting an end to violence, poverty, disease and all the other problems we’ve got in this present age? But that’s not how his kingdom began, or how it’s being established. It began when Christ “humbled himself and became obedient to death – even death on a cross,” and then God “exalted him to the highest place,” Philippians 2:8-9. Jesus’ kingdom began with, and is being built on, suffering and death, not power and violence like pagan kingdoms.

And that legacy continues through his church, 2 Corinthians 4:11 – “For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body.” It’s through our suffering now that Jesus’ kingdom is being built and established, as we now take the troubles of the world to heart, just as he did.

But “if indeed we share in his sufferings,” Romans 8:17, it’s “in order that we may also share in his glory.” That’s the ultimate proof that Christ is king of the earth, when those who built his kingdom HIS way are exalted with him.

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