In a Changing World
The change in the Soviet Union is just one example of the many political kingdoms that have been dramatically altered in just several years of recent history. A reunified Germany, a fragmented Yugoslavia, and a revolutionized Romania are other examples of hastily reshaped countries.
Each change reinforces one basic fact: no earthly kingdom will last forever.
Though you may not have been involved in the shakeup of the political kingdoms mentioned above, you are involved in some type of kingdom. Everyone is.
Some people are like a king living in a kingdom of one. Jesus described this type of person in the parable of the rich fool in Luke 12:13-20. This man had built up his own little kingdom. He contentedly told himself to take it easy, to "eat, drink, and be merry." But God called him a fool because that very night he died and passed into eternity. He left his fortune behind. His kingdom was gone forever, and he had lost his soul as well.
As in the political changes mentioned above, some people work for a cause based on an earthly ideal. Their motivations range from noble intentions of helping the needy to selfish and depraved desires for power and control. Stalin, Hitler, and Napoleon are only a few of the world leaders who established powerful kingdoms. None of them stands today.
Many people, though not having great political ambitions, seek to build a kingdom in a smaller way. A business or a social cause is often the whole world of those involved. But eventually, as with all earthly things, they too will end.
In fact, all kingdoms, except one, will ultimately be destroyed. That kingdom is the kingdom of God. If you want citizenship in a kingdom that will never fail and will bring satisfaction, wholeness, and fulfillment to all its citizens, read on.
God's Kingdom Is Pure: Jesus said in Matthew 13:41 that "all things that offend, and them which do iniquity" would be taken out of His kingdom.
God's Kingdom Is Entered by Spiritual Birth: Beginning with Adam, all men have sinned. Through sin all of us became citizens of Satan's kingdom. Because the kingdom of God is only for the pure, none of us qualify without a change of heart--a spiritual rebirth.
Jesus said, "Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God" (John 3:3). Just as all of us became citizens of an earthly kingdom through birth, so we must be born into the kingdom of God.
It Is Not Presently Visible to the Human Eye: When some people asked Jesus when the kingdom of God would come, he answered, "The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you" (Luke 17:20, 21). This kingdom has no national boundaries. It is made up of millions of people from every country in the world who have received citizenship through spiritual rebirth.
It Will Be Fully Established When Jesus Returns: "When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory" (Matthew 25:31).
It Will Last Forever: In the revelation given to John, he heard the angel saying, "The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever" (Revelation 11:15).
Are you working for a kingdom that is doomed to destruction? Consider citizenship in the kingdom of God. You will never regret it.
Every citizenship carries with it certain privileges and responsibilities. The same is true of citizenship in the kingdom of God. Are you availing yourself of all the King has for you?
Direct access to the throne room: We are invited in Hebrews 4:16 to "come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." What a privilege! Are you a praying citizen?
Direction through the kingdom manual: The Word of God is a Light, a Guide, and the Bread and Water of life. It is living and active, the Sword of the Spirit that brings sure victory to its user. Are you a Bible-loving and Bible-using citizen?
Ambassador status: We have been instructed to spread this Good News of peace to all the world. Are you a Gospel-proclaiming citizen? (II Corinthians 5:20).
Power through the King's personal companion: "Ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you" (Acts 1:8). "How much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask him?" (Luke 11:13). "Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh" (Galatians 5:16). Are you a Spirit-filled citizen?
What the Bible says about YOU.
"The way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps" (Jeremiah 10:23).
"All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way" (Isaiah 53:6).
"There is none righteous, no, not one. They are all gone out of the way" (Romans 3:10, 12).
What the Bible says about JESUS.
"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life" (John 3:16).
"Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved" (Acts 4:12).
The consequences of your CHOICE.
"And I saw a great white throne . . . . And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works . . . . And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire" (Revelation 20:11-15).
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