Imagine a society where God’s principles and way of life were lived out. Righteous figures throughout the Bible story as well as Israel’s history give us glimpses of this. But it is much more thoroughly mapped out how a society should work in the New Testament. The New Testament was the time when things were being brought into fullness. The good news of the Kingdom was being preached far and wide. Followers of Christ were initially called followers of “the way”. This was a way of life and a pattern of living that was different from a corrupt and sinful society. It started with personal salvation and then continued in personal learning, sanctification and increasing of the fruits of the Spirit. This results in a new way of life and bearing good fruit for that person. But then in continues and changes the whole way that families function and then it spreads out and changes the whole way a society works and functions, then it changes whole nations. These principles and way of life should permeate every sector of society. This is not about giving people more to do or getting them to go to church. That is small minded. It is changing the way people think and act and function to the point that it changes everything. Imaging families having order and peace. Husbands, wives and children all accepting their created roles and lovingly and humbling walking in them. There is a lot to this, but it brings real peace to homes and families. And this will produce an even better next generation. Imagine honest and just business dealings in all types of business in society. Imaging just laws that are for the real benefit of all. All of the corruption in business and government stems from sin and rejection of God’s laws and principles. This way of life takes away envy, greed, bitterness, theft, pride, self indulgence, etc. But for it to work, it has to be real. One can’t say they follow this way and then continue in all those sins. It won’t change anything. As Jesus repeatedly says, “Stop sinning.” Most pastors today will tell you on a regular basis that you can’t stop sinning. Well, if you don’t stop sinning, nothing in your life or in society will change. So who are you going to listen to?
I recommend that as a victorious and wise people that we banish the ideas of retirement and putting away the old folks. We are building a Kingdom and we are in an epic war and everyone is needed. We need them and they need us. They are a key part of our wisdom, strength and experience. The old grey beards should be our elders and guides and they have a tremendous wealth of knowledge to offer to God’s Kingdom here and now. We should honor them, treat them with proper respect, and uplift and encourage them as God’s word says. The man in this photo is a retired Swiss Army Soldier who has been competing in and winning endurance races for 50 years. We all need this attitude of perseverance and not quitting or taking it easy. As Christians in America, we’ve been getting our butts kicked by the kingdoms of this world for decades. We’ve been severely weakened by TV, movies, video games, anti-family teachings, feminism, communist ideals, false doctrines in churches, indoctrination by people in our nation who are anti-God, teachings for Christians to check-out of public life, fluffy feel good teachings that disarm people. But only because we let it happen. We need to see the reality that we are in a world-wide struggle. We are in a Kingdom that is to be victorious on this planet and we are to be part of it. We have been given victory, but we must fight the battles. Just as God gave the children of Israel victory, but they had to step out and take the fight to the enemy. They were given the promised land into their hands by God, but they still had to take it. That is now us and it is now a spiritual kingdom and is world wide. Everybody Fights! Nobody Quits!
Jesus said in the book of John, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.” This confused those listening to him because they had never been actual, physical slaves. But there are many forms of slavery and bondage. And just as he states that knowing the truth would set people free, the opposite is also true. Lies bring bondage in one form or another. Sin, for example, often comes from believing some type of lie and this belief of something untrue and resulting sin is a type of bondage. You become a slave to that sin. But this can also come from people who are trying to be good being deceived by a false teaching. If God’s people are taught that they have to do something and are made to feel very guilty if they don’t do it, and this thing they are told they must do is not actually what the Bible teaches, then this too is a type of bondage built on a lie. This does happen when people use man’s methods to get something they want from God’s people. For Christians, being acutely aware of both is important to becoming truly free as God intends for you to be. We can’t fall into bondage from sin, but we also can’t fall into bondage from a false teaching. The only way to avoid this is to know God’s word for yourself, to read it, to ponder it, and to ask God regularly to reveal the truth in his word to you. If you are being hit with guilt in order to get you to cooperate with something, and the Bible is being used to justify it, make sure it is not a passage taken out of context just to support what someone wants to do. Unfortunately, this is very common in churches today. Passages are misused to support a sermon or to support a doctrine or action someone wants to take, yet the scripture isn’t even talking about that, or worse, it’s actually saying the opposite. In order to be spiritually free, we must know what God actually says in the bible and know the whole book in question in light of the whole Bible story to know if that is really what it means. If someone in leadership is misusing scripture, it is right for other believers to point this out to them. That is not rebellion, but protecting. This is for the freedom of everyone involved, not just ourselves. We must know the truth and we must understand God’s teachings deeply in order to be set free and in order to remain free. And once we do know God’s teachings and are set free, we should be passionate to set as many other people free as possible.
God’s purpose for his creation is the same now as it has been from the beginning. It has never changed and God has not lost sight of it. It involved creating something precious, something extremely difficult to make and even difficult to explain. But something so beautiful and glorious that many would give their lives in building it so their children could enjoy the blessings of it. God wanted it for his own Son, and his Son would die to bring it into fullness.
This creation is about a Kingdom, a Kingdom with a king and a people with just laws and a way of life that is good and fruitful. The people in this Kingdom are completely free and they obey the laws of this Kingdom because the laws and the King are good and the people have become wise. God created the world and the the universe and he created mankind, and often we stop there with our understanding. But more importantly, he created a Kingdom. This Kingdom is the object of his work and his love. This Kingdom is described in many ways and types and pictures in the scriptures to deepen our understanding of what it is and what God’s relationship to it is. It is pictured in the Bible as a garden, a bride, a lover, a city, a nation, a people, a body. It’s people are pictured as trees and branches of a vine bearing good fruit, buildings, parts of a body, priests, servants, sheep, friends, a beloved creation. The King is pictured as a king, a bride groom and husband, the head of the body, a high priest, a gardener, a shepard, a father, a counselor, a teacher, a savior, a warrior, a provider.
The Kingdom of God is central to the story of the Bible and yet is almost completely missed or ignored by most Christians and Christian teachers today. Most focus just on individual salvation and a very basic understanding of Christian life. Ask your pastor and some fellow church goers the following questions; What age are we in? are we God’s people? What is the Kingdom of God? Does the Kingdom of God exist on earth today or is it only in heaven? Are we part of that kingdom now? Is Jesus ruling on his throne yet? When we die do we go rest in the earth or go straight to heaven? If the Kingdom of God exists on earth, where is it and what does it look like? Is the world about to end, or does it go on forever? If nothing else, it will be an entertaining exercise that will probably get you thinking. Some will look at you like “what the hell are you talking about?”. Some will be mad that you stumped them. Some will attempt answers based on a vague understanding. A very few will have even a good point of view that they can articulate and converse rationally about. Now if the Kingdom of God is even a central concept in the bible, let alone THE central object, and was a main topic taught on by Jesus and the early disciples, shouldn’t we have a clear understanding of what it is and how it relates to our lives? We can’t find a kingdom if we don’t know what it looks like. We can’t build a kingdom if we don’t know how it functions. We can’t be effective as God’s people if we don’t even know who God’s people really are.
This blog is going to focus on many topics relating to God’s Word and His Kingdom and who we are and what we are suppose to be doing today. It will focus on what this kingdom is suppose to look like and function right here and right now. We will talk about how we are to live as a free people and what true freedom is as well as where we fit into history. It will cover some topics that may strike you as controversial. You will probably not hear much of this in a local church even though it is from the bible and you can read it for yourself. Some of what I say may surprise you or even shock you. It may go against a long held belief. But if you know God and his word and you love him and his creation, then this should be refreshing and encouraging. My goal is to find and spread truth and encourage others to do the same and that this will truly set people free. The goals is truth and all types of freedom based on truth. We will explore a very wide range of topics that relate to current events as well as spiritual concepts and understanding of scripture. So I ask that you read it with an open mind and please search the scriptures thoroughly and ponder these things to see if what is said here is true.