Before Jesus died and rose again, everyone, including Jesus’s disciples, was confused about Jesus’s purpose. Was Jesus on earth to start a military campaign? That would be easier that dying on a cross but not a final solution to the problem of sin. No, the kingdom Jesus talked about is a spiritual kingdom.
Your desire for God’s kingdom is important. “Thy kingdom come; they will be done.”
Jesus first waged war in the spiritual realm. He disarmed sin once and for all. Jesus advanced God’s kingdom and he left us a recipe for how to continue in His absence. Permit me to paraphrase the Lord’s prayer (Matthew 6:9–13):
- Father God is perfect.
- He wants to advance His kingdom on earth.
- He meets all our needs when we can humbly receive them.
- He meets our physical, emotional, and kingdom desires.
To advance God’s kingdom means to expand the reign of God like yeast spreads through dough and causes it to rise (Matthew 13:33, parable explanation). Yeast enters the dough and slowly transforms it. When righteousness, peace, and joy increase, the kingdom of God is advancing (Romans 14:17). The most direct and practical way to advance God’s kingdom is to fulfill the great commission. The great commission is as simple as you knowing God and helping others to know Him, too.
Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.
Just remember: to make a disciple, you first have to be a growing disciple. Being a disciple means you have experience being aware of your needs and receiving from God and others. You accept the help of God’s Holy Spirit who is present in the life of every believer.
And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you.
How potent is your desire to see God’s kingdom come? Are you ready to Play the Long Game to advance God’s kingdom?