6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
7 Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.
Isaiah 9:6-7 (King James Version)
As we await the coming of God’s Christ, we turn to current events. We see empire in its ugly form: America and North Korea flexing their muscles with China in the middle; Russia in Syria; Israel-stoked by Trump’s recognizing Jerusalem as her capital-and her apartheid in the West Bank; America’s other wars in Afghanistan and Africa…and God knows how many more “empire” incidents happening as we speak.
It’s not just geopolitical empires, it can also be religious “empires”. We see the Religious Right (oxymoron) attempting to ride roughshod over the American way of life for the last 30-40 years; trying to tear down the wall separating Church and State. We see cats like ISIS and Boko Haram using violence to push their radical form of Islam. We have Zionists pushing Palestinians out of their homes to expand Israeli policies. Not exactly the King/Queendom of Heaven.
We also have economic empires. Here in the US, we have corporate greed influencing a president who thinks he can run the US like a corporation. We have the Koch Brothers slinging their money around here in America. We have a cadre of banks that wrecked peoples’ dreams of home ownership and/or going to college.
And in the above scenarios, we have the innocent who suffer. Refugees displaced from their homes. People who lose faith in religion. People who lose money/home/dreams. It’s never the perpetrators who suffer. In fact, the perpetrators get a hall pass from any retribution.
However, Advent cuts through all the empire-crap. In tonight’s Scripture, God-through the prophet Isaiah-assures a future where a ruler from God will establish a Kingdom. This was written during Israel’s “dark age” in the 8th-7th Century BCE when Assyria invaded Israel. Many associate this prophecy with the First Coming of Jesus. However, I’m taking the liberty that the Coming Christ will bring forth the Kingdom/Queendom of God for the here and now. If you look at the titles given to this ruler, Jesus will fulfill them all whilst here on Earth. Plus, I dare to say that Jesus’s Kingdom is a spiritual one instead of a political one (ref. John 18:36). He will deliver us from the “dark age” of empire in our 21st Century. You see, it’s going to take spiritual power, not political or economic power, to take down empire.
In fact, I daresay even further that we are that Kingdom: you and I in the Boardinghouse of Faith. We’re the subjects of this Queendom that God will establish through Her coming Christ. We’re to usher in the Christ to liberate humanity from the curse of empire-whatever empire it is. Plus we have our Divine Ruler in the Christ to be our example. And while human empires come and go, God’s Realm will have no end.
God will bring an end to empire. It may not look like it if you look at current events, however we’re assured that the King/Queendom of God will take over through the coming Christ (and us). And that Queen/Kingdom will have no end.
We await the Coming Christ and the Realm he brings.
The end of empire? Yes, it will happen. On that day we will be free.
(Image: “Over Flag” by Me. Taken November 10, 2017).