“I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy; the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.”
I once heard this statement: “Be Kingdom citizens, not systems citizens.” That person was commenting on the various theological systems that have been developed. While recognizing that there is a place for a certain amount of “system” in theology, this person was expressing the importance of finding one’s identity through citizenship in the Kingdom of God, rather than simply through adhering to a particular system of theology or doctrine. This reminds me of Matthew 6:33, where Jesus commands us to “Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness.”
This blog claims to be devoted to the Kingdom of God. That sounds really great. However, there may be some uncertainty about the nature of this Kingdom. Some clarification may be in order.
C.C. Caragounis wrote the article “Kingdom of God/Kingdom of Heaven” in the Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospels (first edition; p. 417-30). He states that the Kingdom of God/Kingdom of Heaven was the theme of Jesus’ preaching. The Kingdom also signifies God’s sovereign rule.
Caragounis articulates three aspects of the Kingdom of God:
1) The Kingdom denotes God’s eternal rule, rather than focusing on an earthly kingdom.
2) The Kingdom has a universal scope (it is open to all people).
3) The Kingdom was present in Jesus and is not simply a vague future hope.
“If you have not chosen the Kingdom of God first, it will in the end make no difference what you have chosen instead.”
David Bercot, in numerous books and sermons, presents several characteristics that help to define what it means to be a Kingdom Christian. Those characteristics include:
- A Kingdom Christian recognizes that he has entered the Kingdom of God, and as such his priorities should now be focused on eternal things. Entering the Kingdom of God gives a person an eternal focus. He seeks to follow God’s eternal laws, leading an eternal lifestyle with an eternal set of priorities.
- A Kingdom Christian is focused on more than just being saved – his focus is on how he can serve his King. He is committed to living by the teachings of Jesus.
- A Kingdom Christian realizes that he has a new job, which is promoting the Kingdom of God.
“That is the church’s business—to preach the Christ who died upon that Cross to reconcile men to God and to reconcile them to one another. Language divides, nationalism divides, political allegiance divides, trade interests divide—but Jesus Christ unites. In a common love to Him, men learn to love one another.”