A way for leaders to help all ages explore the reading.
We live in a world in which powerful people make the decisions, and everybody else has to put up with it. That’s just the way it always has been – the strongest in control, and the only way to change things is to be stronger, to beat them in some way. Do you recognise that description? Does it have to be like that? Is there another way?
What do you think of when you imagine a king? What are kings like – or at least, what were they like in history? How do/did they use their power? Jesus speaks of his kingdom, but says it is ‘not of this world’. What does he mean? Where is his kingdom? If the power of a human king comes from being the strongest, where does Jesus’ power come from?
Sometimes we talk about Jesus’ or God’s kingdom, sometimes about heaven. What do you imagine when you hear the word ‘heaven’? Where is heaven? Jesus taught his disciples to pray, ‘Your (i.e. God’s) kingdom come, on earth as it is in heaven’. What might that suggest about the relationship between earth and heaven? Is heaven ‘another place’ or is it some place close by?
If we acknowledge Jesus as our king, are we already living in God’s kingdom? Elsewhere in the Gospels, Jesus says that the kingdom is among you, and within you – what do you think he meant? What can we do so that we become better citizens of God’s kingdom?
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