An important aspect in building our churches is that we discover the relationship between the local church and the Kingdom of God. Here are some thoughts and principles I have learned through the years in ministry.
The word “kingdom” occurs about 160 times in the New Testament and, in it’s simplest form, it means “real reign or a king’s domain”
In reference to God it refers to the realm of God and the reign of God.
It is God’s will in the Old Testament & in the New Testament to establish His Kingdom on earth.Tweet
Old Testament: God wants the whole earth to be full of His glory.
Isaiah 6:3 is a bible verse that is engraved in my soul:
“And one cried to another and said: “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; The whole earth is full of His glory!”
The glory of God stands for the manifestation and presence of His Kingdom.
If it is the will of God that the whole earth is full of glory, then we never have to doubt whether it is the will of God to establish and manifest His Kingdom in your city.
It is the will of God for your city. It is the devil who is trying to convince you that it is different.
New Testament: God wants His Kingdom to come on earth as it is in Heaven.
Jesus instructed us to pray that His Kingdom come and His will be done.
“Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”Matthew 6:10
This is not something that God does by Himself. We have a part to play in making this a reality.
When we pray this prayer we are asking God to take dominion over us first so that we can extend His dominion over our city.
What is the relationship of the Church and the Kingdom? Are they identical?
The Church and the Kingdom are not identical. You cannot use the word interchangeably. The Church is the instrument of God to extend the Kingdom of God.
What I learned as a pastor
My city is God’s domain. And because I believe that, it influences how I lead the church, what I preach on Sunday morning, and what I teach members about their responsibility in the city. And what role we have as a local church in the city.
Every time I drive or walk through our city I experience that it is the place that God has given us. When I think of that alone, I get excited but also filled with compassion for our city. Because I realise that the Kingdom of God is greater than the number of square metres of our building. And not only that, the influence we have as a church is therefore greater than just the location where our church is located.
The church becomes more important from the moment you realise that your church is God’s instrument for His KingdomTweet
What message of the Kingdom is important for us today?
- Enter the Kingdom yourself through the new birth experience (John 3:3-5).
- Exercise childlike humility before the King of the Kingdom and His Kingdom principles (Matthew 18:3; 19:14).
- Make service to the King of the Kingdom number one in your life (Luke 9:59-62; 14:15-24; Mark 10:17-27).
- The Church is the last instrument of the Kingdom before the King of the Kingdom returns (Matthew 16:18-19; 21:42-44; Ephesians 3:10).
- Structure your life in such a way as to be a kingdom extender. Become a channel that God can use. Take dominion over your corner of the world!
Reasons why it is important to seek the Kingdom of God.
The right priority. Seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be given to you. Making priority to seek His Kingdom first causes God’s providence to be released in my life. (Mt. 6:33)
It keeps me humble because the Kingdom always transcends my own plans and ideas, so that I always realise that in all my decisions and choices I must align what is God’s will because His will is connected to His Kingdom. (Mt. 6:5-15)
It makes life easier for a believer because His Will sets the Kingdom of God free in his life.
It shapes my character. This has to do with the fact that God made man in the image of God and that He wants man to reflect His character. God wants His character and nature to be a present reality and a goal. This has to do with establishing holiness, integrity, excellence, justice, diligence and the fruit of the Spirit in the workplace.
It shapes my relationship. God created man for the purpose of relationship and He wants a personal relationship with all of His creation all of the time. In order to have relationship with God, we must be going in the same direction that He is. We must not allow our relationship to be breached by betraying Him in the world. We must see our mission to see others brought into relationship with Him by our witness to the world.
It makes me reproduce. God wanted man to be fruitful and multiply. This translates into expansion, growth, increase, prosperity, abundance, influence and multiplication. God’s ultimate goal is that the earth be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord as the waters cover the sea. God is the God of more and our lives should be characterised by continued expansion.
It helps me function according to God’s will. God wants us to take our talents, gifts and abilities and begin to do godlike functions. He wants us to partner with Him. He wants us to learn to rule and reign with Him in this life. He wants us to be the head and not
the tail in the affairs of this earth. Reigning with Him now will prepare us for
reigning together with Him in eternity. All legitimate work should be an extension of God’s work.
Misunderstandings that believers may have concerning the kingdom of God.
• Some believers go to work without the idea that they are a representative of God’s Kingdom at work.
• Some believers believe that the principles of the Kingdom of God are not relevant to this modern world or business world.
• Some believers may actually do damage to the cause of Christ and kingdom extension by their attitudes and work performance.
• Some believers see working with the unsaved as a painful necessity rather than privilege.
• Some believers do not see those with whom they work as their personal flock to shepherd or their personal garden to tend and keep.
• Some believers feel that this message only relates to those who have positions of authority in the marketplace.