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Take Hold of the Kingdom of Heaven

It's interesting to compare and contrast God's calendar and that of our culture. This particular biblical month, the 9th, is dynamically different. Far from any Xmas Rush or the sleep in heavenly sleep motif, the time stamped scriptures are awash in face-offs between light and dark.

Highlighted passages in Ezra, Jeremiah, Haggai, Zechariah, and John's gospel clash people, issues and situations. Not surprising then, that the 9th tribe (Benjamin) embodies the conflict and embraces the collision.

It starts at birth with opposing declarations: Son of sorrow or son of strength? The contrast reoccurs in the prophesies: Ravenous wolf or restful protector?

Both, it would seem, apply: Sorrow and strength; Fierce warrior and protective father. Passionate and powerful, cunning and contrary, the notables of Benjamin typify someone you want either very close at hand or as far away as possible.

So what? Why would God highlight these things now? Two questions: How do you process sorrow? How do you move in strength?

Worldly sorrow turns us within and away from God - self-pity is the path. Godly sorrow turns us upward and into God - emptied hands are the way.

And different kinds of strength flow from those sources.

Worldly strength will often arise out of unhealed sorrow driving a fierce determination to never, ever feel that way again. Godly strength arises from the deep waters of His presence in those sorrowful times and the desire to then honor Him who caredT for an honored you.

Critical text for this month is one of Jesus' teaching on the Kingdom of Heaven - that it is violent and the violent take it by force. The Ben's tribe certainly comes to mind. How are we to align in time with this? What are those things that we need take by force?

Remember that the sword of the Spirit is the 'utterance' of God: To deploy it is to declare in agreement what He has said and set in your mouth. What are you to declare this month? Take hold the Kingdom of Heaven and be 'violent' about it.

Stephen For the full teaching, click here.

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