What Jesus Did! 'Not an Earthly Kingdom' — John 18:33-36

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

[After the Jewish leaders indicated to Pilate that they wanted Jesus executed,] Pilate went back into his headquarters and called for Jesus to be brought to him. "Are you the king of the Jews?" he asked him.

Jesus replied, "Is this your own question, or did others tell you about me?"

"Am I a Jew?" Pilate retorted. "Your own people and their leading priests brought you to me for trial. Why? What have you done?"

Jesus answered, "My Kingdom is not an earthly kingdom. If it were, my followers would fight to keep me from being handed over to the Jewish leaders. But my Kingdom is not of this world."

— John 18:33-36 NLT

Key Thought

The crux of a major issue for people accepting Jesus is found in his statement: "My Kingdom is not an earthly kingdom." Jesus lived by a sense of heavenly timing. Jesus lived to honor his Father in heaven by fulfilling his Father's will and doing his Father's work. He taught values that were upside down to the way the world worked. Why? Because his Kingdom is a heavenly Kingdom. Because his goal was and is to bring heaven's glory to life in earthly people. Jesus was no threat to Pilate, the Emperor, or Herod because he had no desire for their palaces or places; he wanted their hearts to be changed and their lives to reflect the heart of heaven. Jesus is not a threat to you either. He wants your heart — not so that he can conquer you, but so that he can glorify you and make you ready for a home with him. Is Jesus your King? Is Jesus' Kingdom your passion?

Today's Prayer

Holy and loving God, my Abba Father, thank you for blessing me with citizenship in your Kingdom. Reign over my heart and use me for your glory, for "Yours is the Kingdom and the power and the glory forever!" In Jesus' name. Amen.

The quotation in the prayer is from Matthew 6:13 NKJV, part of the Lord's Prayer.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Philippians 3:20-21
  • Hebrews 12:18-29
  • Matthew 6:7-13 NKJV


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Illustration of John 18:33-36 NLT — "My Kingdom is not an earthly kingdom. If it were, my followers would fight to keep me from being handed over to the Jewish leaders. But my Kingdom is not of this world."

About This Devotional

What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware and is available in book form.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.