"...Let your Kingdom come, Let your will be down on earth as it is in heaven..." (Matthew 6:10)
Jesus reminds us in Luke 17:21 that the, "Kingdom of God is within us". Those who are born again believers have received the kingdom of God within them when they received Christ and the Holy Spirit. It is through living out the gospel that we bring the kingdom of God upon this earth. We also have a residency with God in the heavenly realms, which is the kingdom where God in Christ Jesus dwells.
The Gospel of the Kingdom is an invitation for man to return to the realm of life God originally intended. But God does not set up a standard of morality and declare that when you have achieved it you can enter the Kingdom. Religion won't do it. There is one requirement for entrance: Repenting from sin which results in spiritual rebirth. Through repenting and accepting Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior you are born into the Kingdom and become a Kingdom resident. Jesus came to restore a right relationship back to God for us.
Residency in the Kingdom of God requires a new lifestyle governed by the laws of the Kingdom. Life in the spiritual Kingdom affects the quality of life in the visible natural world. The lifestyle of the Kingdom of God is opposite of the lifestyle of the kingdoms of the world. It is different in both structure and principles. When you enter the Kingdom of God it is like immigrating to a new country. You must learn a different culture. For in the Kingdom of God there is righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. The Church of Christ is the earthly representation of God's Kingdom on earth. It is commanded to establish kingdom principles through the preaching of the Gospel unto the ends of the earth. Especially in our own community.
Matthew 16:18-19 says' "And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hell will not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven." Since Only God has the power to forgive or to condemn (Judge) when it comes to salvation, what does it mean that God's servants can "bind and loose"?
In the New Testament, the translated English word bind is from the original Greek word "DEO" pronounced day-oh, meaning to tie or be bound. The translated English word loosen is from the Greek word "LYO" pronounced loo-oh, meaning to unloosen or dissolve. The Church has the authority here on earth, through proper interpretation of the Word of God, to evaluate and establish what is lawful or unlawful. This is a great responsibility and we must not take it lightly. Many denominations started because of someone's interpretation of scripture. The "KEY" if you will, is our ability to be faithful and obedient to what Jesus has demonstrated first and foremost. Our judgment of one another is prohibited by Jesus stating, in Luke 6:42 NIV, "How can you say to your brother, 'Brother, let me take the speck out of your eye,' when you yourself fail to see the plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye." We must learn to appreciate God's love, grace and mercy in our own life, for then we can truly extend that same love, grace and mercy to others. For the same measure we judge it will be judged unto us. (Matt.7:2)
In the natural world, "culture" is the behavior patterns which govern life in a society. It separates us by social group. But we must remember that we are a NEW CREATION, the old is gone and the new has come. What unites the body of Christ is not our cultural similarities nor our differences, it is all based on our acceptance of Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior AND our desire to be more like Jesus. Conforming to His image not the image of this world.
• The world says, ‘Hate your enemies.’ The Kingdom says, ‘Love your enemies.’ • The world says, ‘Hit back.’ The Kingdom says, ‘Turn the other cheek and to do good to those who mistreat you.’ • The world says, ‘Hold onto your life at any cost.’ The Kingdom says, ‘Lose your life and you will find it.’ • The world says, ‘Push yourself to the top.’ The Kingdom says, ‘Serve if you want to lead.’ • The world says, ‘You are number one.’ The Kingdom says, ‘Many who are first will be last and the last first.’ • The world says, ‘Acquire gold and silver.’ The Kingdom says, ‘Store up treasure in heaven if you would be rich.’ • The world says, 'There are many paths to God. The Kingdom says, Jesus is the only way, the truth and the life."
Matthew 24:14 says that, ..This gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come." We have a command by Christ to preach His gospel until the end of the world. Being faithful to God also includes the preaching and teaching of His word. The good news of salvation and forgiveness that is found in Christ Jesus.
It is the work of the Holy Spirit to: "Convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment; in regard to sin, because men do not believe in Jesus; in regard to righteousness, because he has gone to the Father, where you can see him no longer; and in regard to judgment, because the prince of this world now stands condemned. Jesus had much more to say to us, more than we can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes into our life, he will guide us into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell us what is yet to come. The Holy Spirit will bring glory to Christ Jesus by taking from what is Christ's and make it known to us." (John 16:8-14) Hallelujah!! When the unadulterated unashamed word of God is preached the Holy Spirit does the rest. Jesus is Glorified, the power of God is magnified and we are edified. To God Be the Glory!!!!
Matthew 11:12 says; "From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven has been forcefully advancing, and forceful men lay hold of it." The kingdom of heaven that was preached by John the Baptist, Jesus, the Disciples and all of us believers is one of God's salvation, grace, righteousness, peace, joy and justice. There are those in this world that want nothing to do with this message. To them it is a violent assault to their flesh. And it is suppose to be. But to those who accept this message it is good news. We desire Christ's love. We are eager for his salvation, to have communion with him. God's love for sinners, his proclamation of peace and pardon of sin, and his declarations, promises and blessings to those who love and obey him produce a zeal to share this message with others. Especially those who have a common concern for family, friends and eternity. For we are not ashamed of the gospel because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes.
Be encouraged! For if we seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, then all these things will be added unto you." (Matthew 6:33) Eternity with God, Forgiveness of Sins, An Abundant Life, A Prosperous Life, Access to the Power that raised Jesus from the grave, Healing, Deliverance, Redemption; God promises to supply ALL of our needs according to His riches and Glory that is found in Christ Jesus.
If you don't know the Lord Jesus as Savior and Lord, in Romans 10:8-10 it says, "The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart," that is, the word of faith we are proclaiming: That if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. As the Scripture says, "Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame." Pray and ask Jesus to come into you heart and life, to forgive you of your sins (which began with Adam & Eve's sin in the garden). He is only a prayer away.
If you are backslidden, you haven't been in fellowship with Jesus for a long time - we beg you in Jesus Name to come back to fellowship. 1 John 1:5-10 says, "This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin. If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives." You have already tasted of the Lord, you know that he is good - Repent, ask the Lord to forgive you. He is faithful. He promises to forgive us. Just ask him. He already knows what we have done, what we haven't done and what we will do. Confession sets our soul free and restores for us a right relationship with God.
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