#DailyDevotion Are You Taking Rest In The Shade Of The Kingdom?
Mark 4:30 And he said, “With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable shall we use for it? 31 It is like a grain of mustard seed, which, when sown on the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth, 32 yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes larger than all the garden plants and puts out large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.”
The Lord demonstrated in history the meaning of this parable. The first time was when he formed the Israelite nation from one man, Abraham to make him a great nation. A tiny seed, planted in the garden of Canaan and it became a great garden plant. One man, then other, then a third, then twelve and over the course of time in Egypt probably something close to three million men, women and children left there to be settled in Canaan, with those of the nations who also trusted in the Lord.
Now Jesus is the mustard seed for he is the kingdom of God. He is planted also in the garden of Canaan literally on Good Friday. As he sprouts, his kingdom grows with the women, the disciples, five hundred witness, three thousand followers, then five thousand followers, the Roman empire in general and so on into the world today the kingdom of God has grown.
It is as the cedar tree from Ezekiel chapter seventeen which starts as a sprig but grows large enough to give shade to every type of bird under the sun. So too, the kingdom of God, has grown to give its shade to people of every language, tribe, people and nation.
And the Lord calls all of us like birds to take our shade under its branches and make our nests in its shade. We are invited to partake of the Lord’s Sabbath, his eternal Sabbath. It matters not our past, our sins and iniquities, what we have done and not done, who we are, what nation or race, what religion or spirituality you had before, Jesus invites you to join him in his kingdom, to rest in his Sabbath.
To rest in his Sabbath and be part of his kingdom is to trust he has won this kingdom for you. Jesus has earned this kingdom by his works and most especially by his innocent suffering, death and resurrection. We rest from our works when we trust in his works, in his victory over sin, death and the devil. Jesus has overcome them all and is growing his kingdom by this word being planted in the garden of our hearts. This kingdom of his started with the planting of one itty bitty seed outside the gates of Jerusalem, namely Jesus of Nazareth.
Heavenly Father, continue to grow the kingdom of your Son Jesus Christ the spreading of the good news of his victory by his innocent suffering, death and resurrection and grant us faith in this victory of his that we may always be part of this kingdom and take our rest in the shade of his kingdom. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.