This was not a political kingdom, or an outward, physical kingdom. The Kingdom of God is first and foremost a spiritual Kingdom – and it begins as it is welcomed into the heart (Luke 17:20,21).
Jesus demonstrated the new Kingdom life He was offering. Every miracle He performed, every need He met, every prayer He prayed – each of these showed that the power of God’s rule was now available to mankind. Jesus demonstrated and taught what God is really like, so that we might respond rightly to God and join in His Kingdom purposes.
Jesus demonstrated God’s great mercy, forgiveness and love. But he also confronted the demonic realm with strength and authority. In the final act of His crucifixion and resurrection, Jesus smashed the power of hell (Col 2:15) and offered to us the same ability to strike down through prayer any satanic forces we encounter (Eph 3:10-12; 6:10-18). This spiritual Kingdom also involves spiritual warfare (prayer), to establish God’s righteous order and rule.
ADVANCING GOD’S KINGDOM
We now see what God, through Christ, has made available to mankind: complete forgiveness; restoration of relationship with God; and His Kingdom rule released to us and through us.
When we accept Christ, we become part of God’s Kingdom (John 3:3-5). As Kingdom “ambassadors” (2 Cor 5:20) it is our privilege and duty to also be Kingdom advancers – to share the Gospel of this Kingdom with the world around us (Matt 24:14; Acts 1:8). Jesus tells us that He gives us the keys to the Kingdom (Matt 16:19). Keys allow us both entry and authority. But will we use this responsibility to invite the rule of God into our midst?
The true cause of human misery is that men are living out of divine order. The world is in rebellion against God’s sovereign rule. It is God’s highest desire to see the welcoming of God’s Kingdom rule into every heart, and into the world at large, in order to fulfill His great plan of redemption.
The true answer to every need lifted in prayer is found in God, and His Kingdom life and power being released to us and through us!
Our prayers allow us to partner with God. We wait upon Him, discover His will, and pray according to what He desires to do to advance His Kingdom. The power is God’s – but we are privileged with the responsibility of inviting His Kingdom power and rule into earth’s realm through prayer.
God’s full Kingdom will not be completely realized until Christ’s glorious return (1 Cor. 15:20-28; Rev 11:15). But because of what Christ has already accomplished through His life, death and resurrection, the rule and power of the Kingdom of God has already been released in part wherever it is invited.
How much higher and grander our prayer life can become when our eyes are lifted beyond our own needs and we join with Christ in intercession for others and for His cause. The best eternal fruit will be reaped when we have persisted in prayer: for the progress of God’s Kingdom; for the needs of His Church; for His ministers and servants; to bind and oppose the forces of hell; and for the evangelization of the world!