The Bible: The Power of Rebirth

The Kingdom of Heaven is likened to Hidden Treasure and the Finest Pearl

Reflection on the Gospel of Wednesday In The Seventeenth Week In Ordinary Time

Matthew 13:44-46

 

The Kingdom of Heaven/Kingdom of God is the main theme of the Gospel of Matthew. What then is this Kingdom? How do we attain it? How do we qualify for it?

What is the Kingdom of God?

  • Genesis mentions
    • Before the Fall, God walked with Man and shared in everything with Man.
    • The World is fashioned as a temple. A temple being a place where God resides.
  • In Exodus we find
    • The First Covenant offered to the Hebrews was that God would resides in each of their Tents
    • And each of them would be a Priest, having a relationship with them.
    • But the Hebrews rejected this offer.
    • So the Covenant established was that God would resides in their midst but is a segregated way
    • not in their midst and
    • the Levites would stand in between God and Man
  • In the Gospels we see
    • Jesus the Word of God
    • Who existed with God, before creation
    • becomes ‘flesh‘ and comes and resides with man.
  • Acts talks of
    • If God became man, it was not to go back
    • But to come and dwell with humanity permanently (N.T. Wright)
    •  So with the Incarnation, Heaven left its place high in the heavens
    • and came down on earth
    • and is in a way, in and around earth
    • but not yet totally assimilated with the human reality.
    • And the way to access God is though getting into a relationship with God
    • Prayer (as seen in Acts) is also a way to access heaven/the reality of heaven here on earth.
  • To conclude
    • The Kingdom of God is where God is
    • It is realised/forms around us as we open our hearts to God
    • For him to come and reside in us
    • walk in partnership with us
    • complementing our every need, action and our life.

How do we attain the Kingdom of God?

  • with opening our hearts to God
  • and  beginning to show interest in him
  • learning about him
  • and getting comfortable to have him in our life
  • because we begin to realise who he is
  • what he does
  • why he does what he does.
  • Only then we go and invest our all in Him
  • This is the meaning of selling everything to acquire the Treasure and Pearl, in this parable.

Do we qualify for the Kingdom of God?

  • In the strictest sense, NO.
  • But then God who is love
  • does not look at our sin to draw us to himself.
  • He desires that even though we may fall regularly
  • he still wants us to still get up,
  • not fall prey to guilt and run away (like Adam)
  • but like Peter, use these fallen moments as anchors that keep you humble, and pride away from you.
  • These mementos are precisely reminders of our unworthiness
  • and God’s graciousness.
  • The key is day in and day out
    • fallen or all good
    • to come before God in all truthfulness
    • and stay with him
    • learn of him
    • and grow into his likeness
    • Just like the Landowner who sows the seed and reaps the harvest,
    • fully not understanding how the small seeds have transformed into the harvest.
    • So too, even as we make every effort to be before God, everyday, his presence transforms us.

If today you hear God calling out to you, or knocking at the door of your heart, do not harden it. Like Samuel say, “Yes Lord, I am here. Help me, teach me, bless me.”

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