St. Dallas on the Gospel, the Kingdom and Grace

It’s hard not to listen to Dallas Willard. He’s interviewed here by John Ortberg. Both of these guys emphasize the present reality of God’s Kingdom. Great stuff.

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Words for the Week ~ May 21

Psalm 31:1-16Acts 7:55-60I Peter 2:2-10John 14:1-14

This past weekend we examined four passages of Scripture that describe the church. Psalm 23 described the church as the one pursued by the “goodness and mercy” of God. Acts 2 described what the earliest, Jewish Christians did. I Peter 2 told the story of how the church trusted “the one who judges justly” empowering them to endure suffering. Lastly, John 10 describes the church as the sheep who hear the voice of their shepherd. (We are the ones who are to “tune in” to the voice of Jesus, the Shepherd.)

But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 10 Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy. – I Peter 2:9-10

This is another description of the church. It describes, through a metaphor that may be distant from our experience, what he intends for us to be and thus to do. This image has roots in the Exodus:

Now therefore, if you will indeed obey my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be my treasured possession among all peoples, for all the earth is mine; 6and you shall be to me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation. These are the words that you shall speak to the people of Israel.” – Exodus 19:5-6

What does it mean for you to be a Kingdom of Priests? How could understanding yourself as a part of such a kingdom affect your life?