Is God’s Kingdom Already Here? Part 4


kingdom-picture

I end this article series with this thought; the heart of what should be our focus before we even get into the trying to reach out to the lost. Acts 2:42 tells us,

“And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers.” (NKJV)

         What good is going to do to bring people into our local churches if we are not in order? 1) We must be diligent in the study of the apostle’s doctrine. We can’t continue to bring the lost and the young into our theological ignorance and flat-out heresies. We need to study, show ourselves approve and stop embarrassing ourselves with motivational sermons that have nothing to do with God’s Word.[1] Honestly, some preachers desperately need to find a good college or seminary where their little theology can be challenge. 2) We must become a real family through fellowship. How many of our brothers and sisters in the church are a part of our lives? Are we eating in each other’s houses? Are we a part of birthday celebrations, special holidays or family cookouts? Our relationship with one another is not real, but we insist in taking on the world and bringing them into our hypocrisy. 3) We MUST pray! As a mater of fact, this is the key ingredient in our fellowship. We have fun, we play games, we eat, we laugh, but we pray as we gather together around our Heavenly Daddy.

         What else we, as leaders in the church, should be doing? We should be equipping people for the work of the ministry.[2] We can’t continue throwing people out there without training in the name of, the -Holy Ghost will take care of it-. God is a God of order and in His Word there is no contradiction. This idea that we don’t need training, that we don’t need to study and we don’t need to put in effort in anything, is a lie from the pit of hell.

         In conclusion, 1) We focus on God, the study of the apostles doctrine. 2) We love one another in true fellowship. 3) We pray together; many of us talk too much, complaint excessively, but pray too little. 4) We equip the saints to do the work of the ministry; and 5) We go into the world trusting God and, fill with the Holy Ghost… we give them JESUS!

 

 

 

[1] 2 Timothy 2:15

[2] Ephesians 4:12

Is God’s Kingdom Already Here? Part 3


kingdom-picture

I know that my prosperity Gospel brothers and sisters will not agree with this, but these are the days where we will endure suffering. We must prepare God’s people to suffer so that they not lose hope when hard times come. Paul explained this way in 2 Timothy 2:12,

“If we endure,

We shall also reign with Him.

If we deny Him,

He also will deny us.” (NKJV)

         The challenge or, the clear question is, what do we do now? Do we just seat on our butts and wait for the return of the Lord? Surely not, but we need to know how we are suppose to relate and engage the world.

         We can’t ignore the fact that God loves the lost.[1] We can’t ignore the fact that Jesus told us to go and preach the Gospel.[2] So, we know that we are not called to ignore the world; we have a responsibility to preach the gospel to them; that is indeed our main responsibility as it relates to the world. Jesus is passionate about the lost and the hurting. In Matthew 25:35-36 He states,  “for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; 36 I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.” (NKJV)

         Every church MUST actively be involved in these five key ministries: 1) Feed the hungry. 2) A homeless ministry. 3) A clothing ministry. 4) A ministry to the sick; and 5) A prison ministry. We are anointed by God to do these good works.[3] If we do not actively engage on these good works our faith is dead.[4]

         Shall we be fighting to change this world system? Is this world system with any hope? I believe that attempting to change the world is not biblical; I believe this world system will get worst.[5] However, the Bible tells us that God will destroy this system in one hour;[6] it will not take Him long at all. We are not in the business of changing the world; we are in the business of snatching folks out of the world and into the family of God.

 

To be continued…

 

 

 

[1] John 3:16

[2] Mark 16:15

[3] Luke 4:18

[4] James 2:17

[5] 2 Timothy 3:1

[6] Revelation 18:10

Is God’s Kingdom Already Here? Part 2


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Before going any further, let me take something out of the way, right away. If someone feels that the kingdom of God is already here in its full manifestation, I should ask, are you saying that we are in the millennium already? Did the rapture already take place?

         I do not argue that God’s kingdom is already on this earth through us; the kingdom of God is in us already. Nevertheless, I do not see any biblical evidence that His kingdom has been already established on this earth.

         We will undoubtedly rule and reign with Jesus on this dimension of life for one thousand years; but I will strongly and passionately argue, that is a futuristic event. Revelation 20:1-6 gives us a good description of the millennium.

20 Then I saw an angel coming down from heaven, having the key to the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. He laid hold of the dragon, that serpent of old, who is the Devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years; and he cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up, and set a seal on him, so that he should deceive the nations no more till the thousand years were finished. But after these things he must be released for a little while. And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was committed to them. Then I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God, who had not worshiped the beast or his image, and had not received his mark on their foreheads or on their hands. And they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years. But the rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years. (NKJV)

         There is a specific time and place when we will rule and reign with Jesus; this is not it! The millennium has very clear biblical characteristics; just to name a few: 1) During the millennium Satan will be bound. (Revelation 20:2) 2) There will be a worldwide acknowledgment and adoration of God. (Isaiah 2:1-4) 3) There will be peace between man and animals. I always say that I will be able to play with bears during the millennium with no fear. (Isaiah 11:6-9 and Isaiah 66:25) These characteristics are just touching the surface of what the millennium will be all about.

         For a deeper study on the millennium I recommend that you read the following article, “Characteristics of the Millennium, the 1000-Year Reign of Jesus Christ upon Earth” by James T. Bartsch.

To be continued…

 

Is God’s Kingdom Already Here?


kingdom-picture

         The topic of the Kingdom of God was the focus of a great message on my local church by my dear brother and fellow elder, Professor Eric Nichols. His message provoked and challenged me to come home and study further.

         I believe that when you preach or teach a message that provokes you to study, that is a successful sermon or teaching; so I want to first acknowledge and thank God for my brother Eric.

     When speaking about the kingdom, we are faced with having to explain what our relationship with this world is. They have a kingdom, the kingdom of darkness and we, as Christians, are a part of a different kingdom, the kingdom of God.[1]

         Are we already in position to rule and reign over this world? The Bible tells us that we are living in the days of the gentiles. Luke 21:23-24 paints a very painful picture.

“But woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck, in those days! for there shall be great distress in the land, and wrath upon this people. 24 And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.” (KJV)

        The times of the gentiles indicates that these are not favorable times for God’s people; it indicates that this planet is run by the kingdom of darkness, not by the kingdom of God. How else can you explain this bathroom controversy? Do I really have to work hard in trying to convince you that this world is going crazier? Do you not get the sense that the good is being called bad and the bad is being called good?[2]

         We already know who the god of this world system is, Satan.[3] We also know his job description of killing, stealing and destruction.[4] Jesus clearly states that we are not of this world.[5] Paul tells us in Romans 12:2 not to be conform to the pattern of this world. Furthermore, James tells us that if we become friends of the world, we become enemies of God.[6]

        So are we to live our lives as if we are allergic to the world? Are we to totally disconnect from them and never reach out to anybody outside of our family in Christ?

To be continued…

 

 

[1] Colossians 1:13

[2] Isaiah 5:20

[3] 2 Corinthians 4:4

[4] John 10:10

[5] John 17:16

[6] James 4:4