Many years ago, Ellen and I watched a TV documentary on the lost city of Atlantis. Explorers have been searching for this city for centuries. Apparently, it sank somewhere in the Atlantic after being overcome by waves and massive flooding. Was it real? Did it really exist? No one knows. But that doesn’t stop people from looking for it.
In Jesus’ day, the Israelites were looking for the kingdom of God. In their minds, it was a physical, tangible kingdom that promised freedom from Rome. After hundreds of years being ruled by foreign powers, the people waited for a Messiah who would conquer their enemies, set up a new kingdom based in Jerusalem, and restore Israel to her former glory. But they missed it. Why? Because the kingdom of God is an invisible kingdom – at least to the naked eye.
Today, a largely secular society doesn’t look for the kingdom of God per se. But it does look for something to hope and believe in. Modern culture still looks for some means of salvation. Yet the modern world is still missing it because people are looking for something that isn’t there. They want something physical; something tangible. What we need – God’s kingdom – is already among us. But it’s invisible to the naked eye. It is only seen and experienced by faith.