Some religious leaders asked Jesus when the Kingdom of God would come. Here’s how he replied:
“The Kingdom of God can’t be detected by visible signs. You won’t be able to say, ‘Here it is!’ or ‘It’s over there!’ For the Kingdom of God is already among you.”
Then he said to his disciples, “The time is coming when you will long to see the day when the Son of Man returns, but you won’t see it. People will tell you, ‘Look, there is the Son of Man,’ or ‘Here he is,’ but don’t go out and follow them. For as the lightning flashes and lights up the sky from one end to the other, so it will be on the day when the Son of Man comes. But first the Son of Man must suffer terribly and be rejected by this generation.
“When the Son of Man returns, it will be like it was in Noah’s day. In those days, the people enjoyed banquets and parties and weddings right up to the time Noah entered his boat and the flood came and destroyed them all.
“And the world will be as it was in the days of Lot. People went about their daily business — eating and drinking, buying and selling, farming and building — until the morning Lot left Sodom. Then fire and burning sulfur rained down from heaven and destroyed them all. Yes, it will be ‘business as usual’ right up to the day when the Son of Man is revealed. On that day a person out on the deck of a roof must not go down into the house to pack. A person out in the field must not return home. Remember what happened to Lot’s wife! If you cling to your life, you will lose it, and if you let your life go, you will save it. That night two people will be asleep in one bed; one will be taken, the other left. Two women will be grinding flour together at the mill; one will be taken, the other left.”
“Where will this happen, Lord?” the disciples asked.
Jesus replied, “Just as the gathering of vultures shows there is a carcass nearby, so these signs indicate that the end is near.”
(Luke 17:20-37 NLT)
Let’s look at our 2 BIG Questions:
1. Who exactly is Jesus?
Here he again refers to himself as the “Son of Man” — the long-awaited Savior prophesied hundreds of years earlier (see Daniel 7:13) — who will “suffer terribly” and “be rejected.”
2. What exactly does he want us to do?
Be ready and don’t be deceived.
Jesus gives several important clues about the Kingdom:
- It can’t be “detected by visible signs”
- It’s already “among us” through Jesus’ coming
- It won’t be fully realized until his return
- People will conduct “business as usual” right up to the very end
- His return won’t be secret — it’ll be obvious to all
We should all heed Jesus’ warning: “If you cling to your life, you will lose it, and if you let your life go, you will save it.”
(Image credit: Shutterstock.com / Karen Katrjyran)