There is a price to pay for the kingdom, Jesus said: the cross. Jesus did not promote ‘cheap ways to salvation’ (Mt 16:24-28).

“The price for the counter-cultural challenge of Jesus is a certain loneliness… his fate clearly showed the price of counter-cultural engagement. Jesus talked about his own mission as a counter-cultural challenge that would bring the sword, not peace (Mt 10:34). Jesus did not hesitate to threaten local cultures by talking condemnation and disaster (Mt 11: 20). Being counter-cultural was part of what the Jesus community was.

“The message of the kingdom of God is the core of Jesus’ message. The kingdom provides us with a vision of a new society, a contrast society. The kingdom of God is not simply an opposition to secular kingdoms… Power in the kingdom, for example, is essentially different; it is not the case that the rich and the poor simply change places (see also, Nolan, JESUS BEFORE CHRISTIANITY).

– Clemens Sedmak, Doing Local Theology