Hebrews 12:18-29 18 You have not come to something* that can be touched, a blazing fire, and darkness, and gloom, and a tempest, 19 and the sound of a trumpet, and a voice whose words made the hearers beg that not another word be spoken to them. 20 (For they could not endure the order that was given, ‘If even an animal touches the mountain, it shall be stoned to death.’ 21 Indeed, so terrifying was the sight that Moses said, ‘I tremble with fear.’) 22 But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to innumerable angels in festal gathering, 23 and to the assembly* of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God the judge of all, and to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, 24 and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.
25 See that you do not refuse the one who is speaking; for if they did not escape when they refused the one who warned them on earth, how much less will we escape if we reject the one who warns from heaven! 26 At that time his voice shook the earth; but now he has promised, ‘Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heaven.’ 27 This phrase ‘Yet once more’ indicates the removal of what is shaken—that is, created things—so that what cannot be shaken may remain. 28 Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us give thanks, by which we offer to God an acceptable worship with reverence and awe; 29 for indeed our God is a consuming fire. (NRSV)
We come into a new Kingdom, one that cannot be touched, heard, or seen. A Kingdom built on our own blood, tears, and spirit. A Kingdom that cannot be shaken by fears, hate, jealously, ego, and greed, it replaces the old kingdom that failed to grow us in God’s presence and love. I, we, must not reject or fear to enter the New. God consumes the old in the cleansing fire of love and releases me, us all, to walk, no run, from the old and into the new. To freely become the being the Divine Spirit wants me, all of us, to be.
Where is this kingdom you ask? If I can’t touch it or see it how do I know it exists, how do I know I’ve arrived? The new Kingdom is not a place of buildings and nation states. No; this new Kingdom is a way of living, visible only through my, our, actions in the world, our prayers, and our relationship with God. It is a Kingdom of the heart, spirit and soul, held together by love, justice, compassion, mercy, peace and walking humbly with the Divine.
No one is forced to enter and all are welcome in this new Kingdom. People enter one by one, in their own time, and in their own chosen way. No one is forced to stay; all may leave and return whenever they choose. I have been in the Kingdom many times; I have also left it many times. Today I choose to enter and as I look back I see . . . You.
Ruth Jewell ©August 20, 2013