The Necessity of Prayer

To Know That He is God
Be Still and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10).

To Renew Our Strength
They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint” (Isaiah 40:31).

God tells us to pray
WHEN you pray” (Matthew 6:5).
Men ought always to pray and not to faint” (Luke 18:1).

The Kingdom of God is at hand—the battle begins

(1) When one Kingdom enters the boundaries of another it is called an invasion.
(2) The Light of the world has come to do battle with the powers of darkness and to set the captives free.
a. Hebrews 2:14 The Word which was in the beginning with God and was God became flesh “that through death He might destroy him that had the power of death, that is the devil.”
b. 1 John 3:8 “For this purpose the Son of God was manifest, that He might destroy the works of the devil.”
c. Acts 26:18 “He came to open the eyes of mankind and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith.”
d. Colossians 1:13 “He has delivered us from the power of darkness, and has translated us into the Kingdom of His Dear Son.”
(3) The world is the battle field which follows a course under the influence of Satan, hence the character of this worldly system is at odds with the character of the Kingdom of God.
(4) Those who are of the world and follow the character of the world, live under the influence of Satan and are at odds with those who are of the Kingdom of God and follow the character of God’s Kingdom under His influence.
(5) As we enter the Kingdom of God, by being born of the Spirit of God we enter this conflict. It is a battle with the world, the flesh, and the devil.
(6) Our battle is not against flesh and blood but is spiritual in nature therefore we must be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might and be daily clothed in the armor of God.
(7) And we now face conflict within ourselves between the flesh and the Spirit.

The Kingdom of God–God has chosen to rule through mankind

God chose to rule through mankind Genesis 1:26-28And God said, let Us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth. So, God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moves upon the earth.
(1) God created mankind in His own image and likeness. God told them to have ruling authority over all that He created and all was to be under his authority and control. God told them to be fruitful and multiply and replenish the earth.
(2) Sin marred the image and likeness of God in man. Man’s authority and dominion was forfeited by sin and the lower creatures gradually broke loose from their condition of subjection. The ground was cursed because of their sin and began to bring forth thorns and thistles.

God chose to rule through the nation of Israel. Exodus 19:5-6 Now therefore, if you will obey My voice indeed, and keep My covenant, then you shall be a peculiar treasure unto Me above all people: for all the earth is Mine: And you shall be unto Me a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation.”
(1) The requirements to be kings and priests unto God—”Obey My voice and keep My covenant.
(2) You will be a peculiar treasure unto Me and I will exalt you above all people.
(3) Israel failed in obeying His voice and failed to keep His covenant. Therefore, they failed to become a peculiar treasure unto God and they failed to become a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.

Now God chooses to rule through the body of Christ, the Church
Revelation 1:6
Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth, loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and has made us kings and priests unto God and His Father; to Him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.”
Revelation 5:9-10 You are worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for you was slain, and have redeemed us to God by your blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; and have made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.
(1) We shall reign on the earth govern-mentally and religiously.
1 Peter 2:9 You are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people; that you should show forth the praises of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.”

Tomorrow we will look closer at God’s ruling
through the body of Christ, the church.

God has commissioned us as Ambassadors of His Kingdom.

Corinthians 5:18-20 And all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself by Jesus Christ, and has given to us the ministry of reconciliation; to wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto Himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and has committed unto us the word of reconciliation. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be reconciled to God.”

v. 18 “all things are of God.”
He pursued us, chose us, called us, and drew us by His Holy Spirit. He gave us a spiritual birth by His Holy Spirit and put His Holy Spirit within us.
(2) He transforms our mind, bringing us to a state of willingness to self-denying labors, in the purpose of making the Savior known under His direction and control.
(3) He works in us both to will and to do of His good pleasure.
(4) “We are His workmanship.” “He began a good work in us and will continue to perform it until the day of Jesus Christ” (Philippians 1:6).
v. 18 “Who has reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ.”
(1) Ephesians 2:13-16 “In Christ Jesus, we who were far off are made nigh by His blood, for He is our peace and He has reconciled us unto God by the cross.”
v. 18 “and has given to us the ministry of reconciliation.”
(1) Jesus said, “As My Father has sent Me, even so send I you.”
(2) Now God is in us (the Holy Spirit) reconciling the world unto Himself. We are responsible to tell the world of God’s ministry of reconciliation in Christ.
v. 19 “that is that God was in Christ reconciling the world unto Himself”
(1) John 10:30, 17:22 “I and my Father are one”.
(2) Reconcile—to remove that which separates (sin) and to bring into a peaceful and harmonious relationship; having the same feelings, ideas, and interests. God was the offended one and He is the conciliator, winning over by acts of love and friendship.
v. 19 “not imputing their trespasses”
Because, by the death and resurrection of Jesus the penalty of our sins has been paid in full and based on that and our belief in it He offers us forgiveness and release from the penalty of sin.
v. 19 “And has committed unto us the word of reconciliation”
He entrusted us with the message of His plan of reconciliation and with the responsibility of proclaiming it as we go into the world.
v. 20 “Now then we are ambassadors for Christ”
He has sent us into the world as representatives of His Kingdom to spread the good news of God’s reconciling plan and the terms on which God is willing to bring them into a relationship with Him.
(2) Acts 1:8 He has given us power to be witnesses of God’s reconciliation offer to mankind.
v. 20 “as though God did beseech you by us”
Because He has entrusted us with the message and sent us out in His name our message is to be regarded as the message of God and as it is God who speaks. We speak in His name and on His authority and it is God speaking to men through us.
v. 20 “we pray you in Christs stead be reconciled to God”

A Kingdom of Ambassadors

We serve God and others as Ambassadors for Christ.
What is an ambassador? The highest-ranking representative of one country to another. We are Christ’s highest-ranking representatives to this world. We are His official messengers on a special mission with a special word. He has entrusted us with power and authority to carry out our responsibilities.
(2) John 20:21 Jesus said that He has sent us just as the Father sent Him.
(3) Matthew 28:18-20 Go therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holly Spirit: teaching them to do all things that I have commanded you. I am with you always even unto the end of the world and all power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth.”

Tomorrow—God has commissioned us
as Ambassadors of His Kingdom.

What are you seeking?

Are you a servant to sin, and self, or to God and righteousness?
Is your priority to seek the things of this world or to seek the Kingdom of God and His righteousness?

Matthew 6:33 See first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness;
and all these things shall be added unto you.

Citizens of the Kingdom of God 5 of 5

Kingdom Citizens are servants both to God and to others. Yesterday we looked at them being servants to God. Today we will look at them being servants to others
Kingdom Citizens are “servants to others”.
Galatians 5:13-14 “Servants to one another.”
How are we to use our freedom in Christ? We are to use our freedom from sin to “by love serve one another.” How much of the law in fulfilled in one word? All. How is this fulfilled? “You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (loving service to one another).
Matthew 20:26-28 “Jesus taught about our position in the Kingdom of God.”
v. 26 What are the requirements of being great in the Kingdom of God? They must through humility, be a willing servant. It is an act of free will. God will not force us. It is done in love and not out of duty.
v. 27 What is the requirement of being the chief (first, leader) in the kingdom of God? They must through humility be a willing slave. Not just a servant, but a slave.
v. 28 What did Jesus say about Himself? He came not to be served, but to serve and to give His life as a ransom for many.
Who was Jesus a servant to? To the Father and to others.
What does it mean to serve? To do the duties of a position or office. To help or give aid.
“Jesus set the example for us” John 13:4-7
v. 4-5 Jesus was doing the duties of whom? A servant.
v. 7 Jesus said to Peter, “What I’m doing, you don’t understand now, but afterward you will know.”
v. 12 Jesus said to the disciples, “Do you know what I have done for you?”
v. 15 I have given you an example that you also should do just as I have done for you.
v. 16-17 A slave is not greater than his master, and a messenger is not greater than the one who sent him. If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them. We are blessed if what? If we know them and do them. Knowing is not enough, we must be doers.

Citizens of the Kingdom 4 of 5

Kingdom Citizens are servants both to God and to others. Today we will look at them being servants to God and tomorrow we will look at them being servants to others.
Kingdom Citizens are “servants to God”.
Romans 6:16-22
They were once the servants of sin yielding their body to uncleanness and lived in disobedience to the word of God. Ephesians 2:2-3 They followed the course of this world under the influence of Satan, the spirit that now works in the children of disobedience. They lived in the lusts of the flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by their nature headed for destruction. Having repented and turned from the former way of living they have turned to God and now live in accordance to His will as revealed by His word and His Holy Spirit unto holiness.
v. 17 What is to be characteristic of the Christian?
(1) They yield a cheerful and hearty obedience to God’s word that has been taught to them. Yield is an act of the will that is then followed up by the action of the body. You are driving down the road and come to a yield sign. You first the decision you will to obey or to disobey. Then your body acts in accordance with your will.
(2) They are to carry out the will of God as revealed to them by the word of God and by the Holy Spirit. This obedience comes from the heart in love and not in duty. “If you love Me you will keep My commandments” (John 14:15, 21).
v. 18 What are we to be servants to?
Having repented and turned from the former way of living they have turned to God and now live in accordance to His will as revealed by His word and His Holy Spirit unto holiness.
v. 22 Being made free from sin what have we become?
(1) They have been set free from sin and now are free to be servants to God.
(2) What does our service to God produce? Fruit unto holiness, whereby the Father is glorified (John 15:8), and which is the evidence of their having received eternal life in Christ Jesus, which will be fully experienced when they get to heaven.

Citizens of the Kingdom of God 3 of 5

Kingdom Citizens live in relationship God
John 17:3 Having a new, spiritual, and eternal life, citizens of the Kingdom of God are to live in relationship with God in such a way that we know Him and not just know about Him. This relationship is a oneness of life. To really know Him we must spend time with Him. How well do you know Him? When we really know someone, we can recognize their voice even when we can’t see them. Do you know God well enough to recognize His voice? Jesus said, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” Are you living close enough to Him that you can hear His voice?
John 15:4-5 We are to abide in Him and Him, in us. We are to be properly connected spiritually with Him in a oneness, that we receive of the essence of His life. In this spiritual Kingdom and spiritual relationship, we are to be spiritually productive citizens as we are yielded to Him and His life flows through us.
1 John 4:16 “God is love; and he that dwells in love dwells in God, and God in him.” 1 John 2:5 “Whosoever keeps His word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in Him.” 1 Corinthians 8:3 “If any man love God, the same is known of Him.”

Kingdom Citizens live in relationship with each other
Matthew 6:9; Romans 8:15-16 “Our Father.” We live in relationship with God and with all the other citizens of the Kingdom of God. “The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God” (Romans 8:15-16).
1 John 4:12 “If we love one another, God dwells in us, and His love is perfected in us.”

Two primary commandments rule over these two relationships
Matthew 22:37-40 The first and greatest commandment: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.” The second commandment: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
(1) On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets. All the New Testament hangs on these two commandments as well.
(2) The New Testament tells us how to keep these two commandments and thus love God and our neighbor.
(3) What is the key word in both commandments? Love

Citizens of the Kingdom of God 2 of 5

The characteristics of the Kingdom are the same as the characteristics of God and Kingdom citizens are to take on the same characteristics.
The Kingdom of God is Spiritual in Nature
Luke 17:20-21 “The Kingdom of God does not come with observation: for the Kingdom of God is within you.” It is like the wind: you can’t see it, but you can see the effects of it. It manifests its power in varying degrees and produces varying results.
Being a citizen of the spiritual Kingdom of God, how are we to conduct our lives?
We are to be filled with the Spirit and we are to live our lives under the influence of the Spirit. We are to let Him lead us.
(2) The Kingdom of God is within us therefore, we are to look inward and to the Spirit, not outward, for direction in our lives.
(3) Colossians 3:1-2 We are to seek those things which are above and to set our affections on things above, not on things of the earth.
(4) Mathew 6:33 Seeking the kingdom of God and His righteousness first is to be our priority. Then all things needful will be added unto us.
Being a citizen of the Kingdom of God, what is our relationship to the world to be?
John 18:36-37 Jesus said, My Kingdom is not of this world therefore, we are not to love the world neither the things that are in the world. We are not of this world for He has chosen us out of the world.
Colossians 3:1-2 We are to be focused on the things of God and not on the things of the earth.
1 Corinthians 4:20 “The Kingdom of God is not in word, but in power.” We are to be citizens in power and not in word only.