I am poking at the church in the West when I ask that question (the church that I am firmly planted within). Why can the church seem to do very little against the rising tide of moral gobbledygook and murderous insanity? It seems that that mythic box of Pandora has been opened. You know, a gay Muslim murdering 49 homosexuals is a vivid example of hatred and confusion, and the 3,000 babies that were murdered on the same day.
If you want to know if you are part of the problem, answer this question: who is the ruler of this world?
If you answered “the Devil,” then you are part of the problem.
The Bible is clear: The Messiah, the Son of God, Jesus the Christ is the ruler of this world, Matthew 28:18-20. So, why is His church seemingly incapable of doing anything? Here is the answer: the church is impotent because we have a terrible theology of Christ’s rule over heaven and earth. Plain and simple.
The church, by and large, believes that Jesus rules in our head and heart…on Sunday…for an hour. He does not have any authority out there in the world, just in here. Our job, some say, is to go into the world and save souls. Period. True enough, but that is not enough truth. Jesus was incarnate, which means God became man, which means creation is not to be given up and abandoned. The incarnation shows that this mortal flesh is not garbage, it shows that this present creation is on its path to being glorified.
Jesus also rose from the dead and ascended into heaven. Jesus did not overcome “filthy” human flesh, rather He overcame rotten sinful hearts. His resurrection, the glorification of Adamic flesh and that flesh’s ascension to the right hand of the Father is proof that the present creation is not a sinking ship. How could it be? It belongs to Jesus, He made it, He sustains it, and He rules over it. This world is continuous with the reign of Christ; it is not abandoned because of the rule of Christ.
Christ’s authority, the new Adam, is as extensive as the fall of the first Adam’s curse. The purpose of Christ ruling and reigning NOW is to reverse that curse. The most quoted Old Testament passage in the New is Psalm 110 and it says,
“Yahweh says to my Lord:
“Sit at My right hand,
until I make Your enemies Your footstool.”
This is happening now, 1 Corinthians 15:20-26. History is the great story of Jesus Christ overcoming all His enemies and living happily ever after with His bride. History is not a failure. From Adam to the cross, and from the grave to the final coming, Jesus is victorious and each and every enemy that raises its neck against the King will be crushed, Psalm 2. This is not a “Jesus reigns in my heart” theology. Jesus reigns over every rock in every river. He reigns over every sea slug inching its way across the ocean floor. He reigns over every nation and empire and every person within them. He is the King of all kings, not just that He is the highest and most honorable King, but that He is the King that rules over all the kings of earth.
Jesus is the King over Obama, Clinton, and Trump. He is the King over Omar Marteen. They will kneel under His judgment. He is the King over every atom and each quark. They obey His every word. Each aspect of creation belongs to Jesus.
The church is weak because the church fails to allow this truth to become action guiding. Since Jesus is this King, we, as His servants, fail to fulfill our duty. He is the King of every courthouse, and we should fill them with His Law. He is the King of every hospital, and we should fill them with His ethics. He is the King of knowledge and every person everywhere needs to be filled with His truth. He is the King of marriage. He is the King of economics. He is the King of international politics. If you can think of it, He is the King of it, and therefore every aspect of this created world needs to be brought into submission to Jesus Christ.
If the church pursues this in faith, we will certainly suffer and die for the sake of our King, but that is better than dying in the wilderness under the judgment of God.