An unshakable kingdom

[Note: I’m on vacation next week so the devotional will go on pause after today and will return on March 20th.]

Certain events and experiences can shake and unsettle us.

A world war can do that. So can events like September 11, 2001. I still remember the day. When terrorists flew planes into the World Trade Centre in New York City it was very upsetting and jarring. Not only was there a massive loss of life, but it was shocking that this attack could happen in the biggest city in America in the most powerful country in the world!

The war in Ukraine can shake and unsettle us. So can the pandemic, the culture wars, the rise of anxiety and despair, and recent “advances” in artificial intelligence.

So there is a stabilizing and comforting dimension to the fact that Jesus’ kingdom of “not of this world” (John 18:36). This kingdom—called the “kingdom of Christ” in Ephesians 5:5—is not darkened, dislodged or defeated by the events and experiences which can otherwise shake and unsettle us.

John Calvin provides this hopeful perspective: “if Christ’s kingdom were earthly, it would be unstable and changeable, since the fashion of this world passeth away. But since it is called heavenly, we are assured if its perpetuity.”*

There are some very positive things in our world. There are even some things that give me great hope. At the same time, there are significant problems and causes for serious concern.

But you need not fear. If you are in Christ, nothing can shake or unsettle God’s kingdom from your soul.

And that is your true home, comfort and calling.

As we are reminded in Hebrews 12:28: “since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe…”


–The Up Devotional is published 5 days a week and returns on March 13, 2023.

–*John Calvin, Calvin’s New Testament Commentaries: The Gospel According to St. John, Part Two 11-21 and The First Epistle of John, trans. T.H.L. Parker (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company), 1959), 166.

–Bible quotes are from the NIV.

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