Jesus made a remarkable statement to His disciples: "Your
kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven" (Luke
11:2, NKJV). This was a futuristic prayer for the disciples, but not
for Jesus. And it's not futuristic for us either because it applies
right now. Allow me to explain.
The Pharisees had problems with Jesus since He hadn't
come on the scene the way they expected. When He showed up—a Nazarene,
a carpenter from a poor family, and a friend of prostitutes and mafia
(tax collectors were the mafia of the day)—they didn't buy in to Him as
So they confronted Jesus and He answered: "The kingdom of God does not come with observation...For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you." (Luke 17:20-21, NKJV)
"The kingdom...is within you"? Jesus was speaking of those
who would be born again and filled with His Spirit. He had earlier
promised to those who loved Him, "Do not fear, little flock, for it is
your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom" (Luke 12:32, NKJV).
But when was the kingdom to be given? Jesus' disciples
asked Him this nagging question after He was raised from the dead. Put
yourself in their shoes. It was finally clear: Jesus, alive and well,
was standing before these faithful followers—but where was the kingdom?
They were still confused about this even just before His ascension.
They too were still looking for a physical kingdom to manifest itself.
While looking for this literal throne on earth, they forgot His words:
"The kingdom...is within you." So He corrected their thinking:
"The times and occasions are set by my Father's own
authority, and it is not for you to know when they will be [the
establishment of His physical kingdom upon His return]. But when the
Holy Spirit comes upon you, you will be filled with power [the kingdom
within]." (Acts 1:7-8, TEV)
"Filled with power" from the Holy Spirit to do what? Advance the kingdom! This
was not only for them but also for us. Once the Holy Spirit came to
dwell within humankind, the kingdom and all its power would be within
us! We now possess the power to advance the kingdom in the
hearts and lives of others. And we can now do the works Jesus did in
advancing the kingdom—and even greater works!
Marked by boldness and passion, John Bevere
delivers uncompromising truth through his award-winning curriculum and
best-selling books now available in over sixty languages. His newest
book is Extraordinary: The Life You're Meant to Live. More information is available at www.ExtraordinaryOnline.org.
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