“My Kingdom is not of this world…but now my Kingdom is from another place.” – Jesus (John 18:36)
God’s Kingdom is not a kingdom of property and of location. God’s Kingdom is within those who believe in Jesus. How we live, according to Him, is a reflection of that Kingdom. How we live, according to Him, is how bring His Kingdom into the contexts of our lives.
As Jesus was being questioned by Pilate, during those final hours of His life, Jesus points out a huge contrast between His Kingdom and the one’s we’re used to this side of heaven. His Kingdom isn’t opposed to anything except for sin and Satan. God’s Kingdom is not against people. It’s not against groups. It’s not even against different philosophies. It’s not about taking over other kingdoms and ruling and reigning over people’s lives.
God’s Kingdom, simply put, is only against sin and Satan.
So, when we war against people because of differing world views, then it’s an admission that we don’t quite understand the Kingdom. When we battle over pettiness and, at times, resort to violent words and actions to prove our case, we’re admitting ignorance to the Kingdom that Jesus talks about. God’s Kingdom is about truth. Advancing His Kingdom is about speaking truth and leaving it at that. It’s about pointing people to the truth of Jesus without having to war against others. When Paul testified about the “unknown” God to the argumentatives and philosophers in Athens, he simply told the truth of God in Jesus. He didn’t come with persuasive words. He simply told the truth.
When we simply speak the truth of Jesus in love, we help to advance God’s Kingdom. When we understand that His Kingdom is within us, we’re living with the understanding that our royal inheritance is a spiritual one that transcends monetary values of the earth. We understand that our power is also spiritual, then the rules of engagement by the world’s standards are null and void. And, understanding the Kingdom in us means we understand that glory, too, is reigning within, so that we no longer have to strive to gain acceptance from man.
The Kingdom of God is about peace. It’s about His peace in us and us bringing that peace into our contexts. The Kingdom of God is about love. It’s about His love embracing us and us embracing others with that love in never ending grace and truth. The Kingdom of God is about pointing people to Jesus. It’s about, as Paul did with those in Athens, sharing the story of Jesus with those we find ourselves around.
God’s Kingdom. In us. Through us.
How about you? What is God’s Kingdom?