The Kingdom & Will of God

Home Church Devotional 11/28/2020

These devotionals were written during the 2020 Covid-19 pandemic when area churches were not allowed to meet for fear of spreading the coronavirus. They were used in place of a full sermon as my family and I gathered for worship and communion.

“Pray, then, in this way: ‘Our Father who is in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done, On earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. [For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’]”                                  Matthew 6:9-13 (NASB)

Thus far in our study of The Lord’s Prayer we have learned that Christian prayer is unique and sets the standard for prayer. Christian prayer is genuine, not being filled with empty words and meaningless repetition; we are not heard by the number of words we pray or how often we repeat them. Christian prayer is meaningful as it engages our hearts and minds in what we are saying, we lock ourselves away “in secret” to pray “in secret” to the Father who sees “in secret.” Last week we learned in praying “our Father” that we are acknowledging a relationship that is shared with believers around the world, our brothers and sisters in Christ, in addition, heaven is not the place where God resides but rather it is the power and authority of God; and we looked at the first of three petitions concerning God when we learn as we pray to set apart the name of God in reverence and honor that we might glorify and exalt Him.

That brings us to verse 10 and the final petitions in honoring and exalting God the Father. This week we concern ourselves with God’s kingdom and God’s will. These are the heart of the message Jesus was preaching and teaching for the three years He spent on earth, leading His disciples and teaching them to share and spread this same message, a message that is all but left out of many churches and Christian lives today. To truly honor and exalt God we must share and spread the same message His only Son shared, the message that melted many of our hearts and drew us into fellowship with Him.

In praying “Your kingdom come, Your will be done,” we are praying for the spread of the gospel.

1). When we pray “Your kingdom come,” we are acknowledging God’s rules and God’s reign.

What does it mean to pray, “Your kingdom come?” Are we really ready for God’s kingdom to come? Do we really understand what we are asking for when we pray, “Your kingdom come?” As pleasant as it may seem to just have God come and establish His kingdom, it is far more complex and most likely will upset our apple carts. To pray “Your kingdom come” is to pray for major changes, not only in this world, in the hearts of our friends and family, but also within ourselves. No, this simple pray is far more complex than we can imagine.

To pray for God’s kingdom to come is to pray for the spread of the gospel message through His people – the church. That means putting ourselves on the frontlines of the battle against the darkness of this world. That means we are to be about the business of the Great commission in Matthew 28:18 – 20, sharing our story and how we have been impacted by the message of the gospel. This means getting our hands dirty and opening ourselves to the possibility of being hurt by others who do not know the peace found in Christ Jesus.

To pray for God’s kingdom to come is to align ourselves with the very message that Jesus and His disciples preached, taught and prayed. To pray for God’s kingdom to come is to pray for the very thing God longs for – to reign in the hearts of people everywhere. To pray for God’s kingdom to come is the very substance of the believer’s life – or it should be!! Our focus and attention, all of our energy and effort should be centered on the rule and reign of God on earth.

To pray for God’s kingdom to come is to pray that apathy and selfishness are conquered in our lives, not just the lives of friends and family members. God’s people must be rightly prepared before we can pray for God’s kingdom to come or we can lead others into the kingdom. God’s people are always to lead the way and that includes the difficult process of allowing God to break our stubborn hearts and minds to align them with His message and kingdom principles.

Likewise, the church must be the place where God’s kingdom can be seen at work in the lives of its members. God’s rule and reign should be clearly changing the lives of the church and the members. Selfish motivations for power, recognition and authority are done away with to be replaced with the heart of a servant in all members. The church itself should be a place of peace, where the rule and reign of God is so evident you can almost touch it! There is no dispute about the commands of God or the power of His mercy, grace and love. The church exemplifies all three elements in how the church worships, the way it treats one another as well as outsiders and how it functions in the community that surrounds it.

In praying “Your kingdom come, Your will be done,” we are praying for the spread of the gospel.

2). When we pray “Your will be done,” we agree to God’s control and God’s choices.

What does it mean to pray “Your will be done?” Are we ready to fully accept the will of God? Do we even know the will of God? Once again, as we pray for God’s will to be done, we will be affected, not just those around us. What many fail to realize is that God’s will is going to be done whether we are onboard with it or not, whether we are ready for it does not matter. God’s will is going to be done, so better to be onboard and be ready than have it run us over on the way through!

In praying, “Your will be done,” we are saying we will work to please God in all we do and to see that God’s will is done on earth. This takes our will, our agenda, our self-serving effort out of the matter – we are to serve God to please Him alone and make certain His will is being done – in all we do! Once again, we will be doing the dirty work of ministry with those who are searching for peace amid a world filled with chaos, we open ourselves to hurts we may not see coming.

In praying, “Your will be done,” we are saying God can do what He wants with us, no matter what He has chosen, we put ourselves at His disposal – even at the sacrifice of all we are and all we have. In praying, “Your will be done,” we are saying we will NOT be upset at what God decides to do – we may not understand it, it may cause more questions than answers, but we know God’s will is best! To pray, “Your will be done,” is to pray for our selfish attitudes and self-centered will to be replaced, indeed removed, that God’s will become our will!

Do you know God’s will? If you are praying, “Your will be done,” you must know God’s will for God’s will to be done! The will of God is for all people to be obedient to His law and thus be holy. To pray, “Your will be done,” is to pray for His law, His revealed will, to be obeyed and loved. God’s law is perfectly obeyed in heaven and we pray that the same be true on earth.

Once again, the church is the place where God’s will should be fully in display in each member of the church. If God’s rule and reign are clearly seen than God’s law is being perfectly obeyed within the church. Mercy, grace and love flow in abundance in and through the members and the church itself. Peace is evidenced in each individual life and within the church functions as well. Worship is filled with the glory of God, praise for the Creator flows to the heavenly throne, and all things are done in the name of God to His glory and exhalation!

In praying “Your kingdom come, Your will be done,” we are praying for the spread of the gospel.

Thus far in our study of The Lord’s Prayer we have learned that Christian prayer is unique and sets the standard for prayer. Christian prayer is genuine, not being filled with empty words and meaningless repetition; we are not heard by the number of words we pray or how often we repeat them. Christian prayer is meaningful as it engages our hearts and minds in what we are saying, we lock ourselves away “in secret” to pray “in secret” to the Father who sees “in secret.” Last week we learned in praying “our Father” that we are acknowledging a relationship that is shared with believers around the world, our brothers and sisters in Christ, in addition, heaven is not the place where God resides but rather it is the power and authority of God; and we looked at the first of three petitions concerning God when we learn as we pray to set apart the name of God in reverence and honor that we might glorify and exalt Him.  

That brings us to verse 10 and the final petitions in honoring and exalting God the Father. This week we concern ourselves with God’s kingdom and God’s will. These are the heart of the message Jesus was preaching and teaching for the three years He spent on earth, leading His disciples and teaching them to share and spread this same message, a message that is all but left out of many churches and Christian lives today. To truly honor and exalt God we must share and spread the same message His only Son shared, the message that melted many of our hearts and drew us into fellowship with Him.

You now have a choice to make. You can choose to follow one of four wills: (1) you can choose to follow your own will; (2) you choose to follow the will of others; (3) you can choose to follow Satan’s will; or (4) you can choose to follow God’s will. By praying, “Your kingdom come, Your will be done,” we are acknowledging a kingdom truly exists. If this kingdom exists there must be a king and a government. If there is a king and a government, then YOU are subject to the king and bound by His government, in fact, your own governance comes to an end! Do you call God your King? If so, do you honor Him as King by being obedient to His will?

Amen and Amen.

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