Pilate answered [Jesus], Am I a Jew? your own nation and the chief priests have delivered you unto me: what have you done? Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from here. Pilate therefore said unto him, Are you a king then? Jesus answered, You say that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth hears my voice.
(Joh 18:35-37 KJ2000)
Pilate asked Jesus what He had done to be delivered to be delivered by the Jewish authority for execution. Jesus answered him succinctly, “My kingdom is not of this world.”
If we are of this world (kosmos – world system) we will support the governments of men on one side or the other, putting our hopes in them and not the Prince of Peace. We will stand and fight and the world will love us. Our actions will always lead to murder and war (see James 4:1-6). The “peace movement” of the sixties turned violent very quickly because they were ignorant of this fact. Satan had them in his hand in a heartbeat.
Jesus was killed by the religious and governmental systems of men because he was NOT of this world so were Stephen and the rest of the early church martyrs. It was not until Christianity became a religious system under Emperor Constantine’s control that it became murderous. “God and country” whether it is Allah and country under sheriah law or the American version “Moral Majority” is still the same murderous delusion. When religion gets punitive power it becomes bloody every time, even killing the Christ and His messengers who come to save them from themselves.
Much of Christianity today appeals to the Old Covenant to justify governmental power and even murder. They use it to justify hatred for minorities, homosexuals and other religions of the world, but Jesus brought an end to that covenant and filled up the just requirements of its law as He died on the cross as the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. We are not under that covenant, but rather one that is NEW in every way with Christ, the Prince of Peace, as our only Head. If we had known what this means, “I shall have mercy, not sacrifice,” we would have not condemned the guiltless. Jesus came to tear down the wall of separation between all men, not establish a new one. His mercy triumphs over judgement and HIS kingdom will triumph over the fallen kingdoms of men.
Choices are being made in this hour as to who is our King and in which kingdom we will be found taking our stand. Guns stores are being emptied of weapons and ammunition here in America. There will be another bloody revolution as King Obama or is ilk continues to strip away our civil rights with increasing centralized governmental power. To many Christians in America this is a severe test. May we who belong to Jesus all be found standing with the Prince of Peace in the days ahead no matter the cost.