The Kingdom of God
The Kingdom of God
I intended to talk about the sovereignty of God in this blog. As I thought about it I decided that we needed to talk about the kingdom of God.
Matthew 6:10 “Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” In this passage Jesus is providing His disciples a model prayer. Matthew 26:39 ……“My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.” While praying in Gethsemane our Lord and Savior made this statement “not as I will, but as you will.” The idea of the “Kingdom of God” comes out particularly in the teaching of Jesus and is one of His central themes. Jesus used this term in a wide variety of contexts, so that its essential meaning needs careful definition. It means the sovereignty of God, the situation in which God is in control, His rule or reign. Now, while in one sense God is always in control, it is also a fact that man rejects His sovereignty and rebels. The “coming of the kingdom” therefore denotes the practical implementation of God’s rule in human affairs, and it was His coming of the kingdom which Jesus announced as He began his ministry – Mark 1:15. Other sayings reinforce the message that His coming already brought into operation the rule of God – Matthew 12:28; Luke 17:20ff. Jesus could speak of people “entering” or “receiving” the kingdom – Mark 10:15; 23-25; Luke 12:31; 16:16, and assured His disciples that “Yours is the Kingdom of God” – Luke 6:20; Matthew 5:3, 10.
Jesus provides some insight into the sovereignty of God in the Luke 17:21 where he stated “the Kingdom is within you”.
Does God rule your life – is God’s sovereign in your life?
The Greek word that is translated “kingdom” here is used in the sense of realm or domain. The dominant sense is “sovereignty” or “kingly rule”. The sovereignty of God is absolute, but not recognized by sinful man, who thus merits destruction. The “gospel of the Kingdom of God” means that men are given an opportunity to receive the kingdom by repentance and faith – Mark 1:15. This is achieved through Christ the Messiah-King, to whom every knee must bow, whether in willing loyalty or under judgment – Romans 14: 10-11; Philippians 2:9-11; Isaiah 45:22.
Abundant though this revealed knowledge of God is, yet in the divine name there is a clear element of secrecy. The statement “I am who I am” in itself expresses no more than that God knows His own nature: it is a formula of the sovereignty of God in the revelation of Himself. If anything is to be told, He must tell it; He will tell only what He pleases. – Genesis 32:29; Judges 13:17.
I want to close with this story about a tightrope walker.
A huge crowd was watching the famous tightrope walker, Blondin, cross Niagara Falls one day in 1860. He crossed it numerous times—a 1,000-foot trip 160 feet above the raging waters. He not only walked across it; he also pushed a wheelbarrow across it. One little boy just stared in amazement. So after completing a crossing the fellow looked at that little boy and he said, “Do you believe I could take a person across in the wheelbarrow without falling?” “Yes, sir. I really do.” The fellow says, “Well then, get in, son.”
If the young man did indeed ride a cross in the wheelbarrow he would have expressed both faith and trust in this action. I do not know that he actually rode across in the wheelbarrow but this does make an excellent point in our relationship to God. We have faith in God but many times in our life we do not demonstrate trust.
I would like to leave you with this thought.
Which is more important trust or obedience?