God's Agenda- Part 2
We learned in part one of our previous article that God has an agenda that was designed with all-knowing wisdom, perfect love, and all-powerfulness. It includes the greatest good for the greatest number for the longest period, for the maximum glory of God. His agenda is called, “The Kingdom of God or of Heaven”.
We are not left to personal or public opinions to determine what the first things, the main things, the priorities of life are. King Jesus declares it upfront and most emphatically – KINGDOM FIRST! What is God’s kingdom agenda and how do we conduct all our lives by it?
In part one we saw that the Divine Priority of the Kingdom is Specific in its Mandate. Secondly, we note:
The Divine Pursuit of the Kingdom is Simple in its Method
Anyone who observed the life of Jesus would have to conclude he lived life more effectively and successfully than all others, yet His life was very simple. Why? How? It was effective because it was reduced to two simple pursuits: (1) A kingdom from a place called heaven; (2) A concept He called righteousness.
A. Aligning Ourselves with God’s Priority Ensures that we will Work on the Right Assignment and Walk in the Right Direction.
The greatest failure in life is being successful in the wrong assignment! The greatest frustration is making progress in the wrong direction! The late Peter Lord asked, “What if you spent your whole life making apple pies for God only to discover that God didn’t like apple pies?”
What would you say to a friend whose goal was to get to Miami from Augusta if he called on his cell phone to report that he was barreling down I-95 North, making great time, in great weather, with no traffic problems? If you were from my locale, you would say Miami requires driving I-95 South!
In my opinion, the greatest misplaced priority of American Christians is living with a spirit of ownership instead of Kingdom stewardship and a spirit of unbelief due to worry over what we think we own! Man was created to rule things and not pursue things! But because we pursue things, we miss the main thing – the kingdom of God!
Things that I am anxious about and ambitious for are the things that take priority in my life.
In Matthew 6:25, Jesus said, "Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?” These can be summed up as finances, food, fashions, fitness, and the future – none of which are to be the occasion of worry.
Seeking the Kingdom also means that I seek Christ's rule to be manifest in my life. I seek the Kingdom of God to be revealed in my life as righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit (Rom. 14:17). So, when the world sees righteousness, peace, and joy in my life instead of worry, it knows the Kingdom of God is here, now!
You can say, "I want to be used to extend the kingdom and see people come into it. I want to tell people everywhere about King Jesus." But if your life is marked by obvious materialism, a ruthless ambition to succeed, an almost nervous-breakdown type anxiety over potential loss of your stuff, and religious activity without real ministry purpose, they will not believe you have anything that they don’t have and anything that they want. They are certainly going to question the power of God. The Kingdom of God is manifest in righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit.
B. Righteous Positioning Keeps us in Place to Receive the Rights, Resources and Responsibilities of the Kingdom.
What does it mean to seek His righteousness? To seek God’s righteousness is to value His worth and to desire to live and work in such a way as to honor His Rightness in all areas and in all things.
Righteousness is a description of His character manifest in the way He acts. To seek the righteousness of God is to recognize, love and uphold what is truly valuable, i.e., the worth of God.
Righteousness is also a legal term that means “right positioning so as to be in correct alignment with the ruling standard.”The old English word is “Right-wise” and means that things are what they ought to be.
Righteousness is based on Right Standing with the King – that’s imputed righteousness, and Ready Obedience to Him – this comes from imparted righteousness.
I can never be in right standing with the government of the United States when I reject all its rule and responsibilities and opt for establishing my own. This is called treason!
The theme of a righteous God, a righteous people and righteous living, occupies a massive amount of scripture. (over 500 verses!)
Psa 37:39, “The salvation of the righteous is from the LORD; he is their stronghold in the time of trouble.”
Psa 11:7, “For the LORD is righteous; he loves righteous deeds; the upright shall behold his face.”
Psa 5:12, “For you bless the righteous, O LORD; you cover him with favor as with a shield.”
Isa 32:17, “And the effect of righteousness will be peace, and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust forever.”
Mat 5:6, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.”
Mat 5:10, “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
1Co 1:30, “He is the source of your life in Christ Jesus, whom God made our wisdom and our righteousness and sanctification and redemption.”
2Co 5:21, “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”
May I tell you friends that God wants no part of solving our problems, or padding our pocketbooks, or meeting our needs without a relationship with us, total rulership over us, and kingdom partnership with us!
Unrighteous sinners that we are, yet, only in such a state are we qualified for the gospel message. In the gospel we are told of how a righteous God and a ruined sinner can meet at a blood-stained cross and so encounter the living God that we are supernaturally birthed and transferred into His kingdom. We then become the righteousness of God in Christ and King’s kids indwelt and in-filled with the resurrected life of King Jesus. Entering the reality of the kingdom begins a righteousness pursuing, sin-curse reversing of the fall that brings the joy and power of the world to come into the now and empowers us for living in God’s abundance.
When you seek God’s kingdom as your ultimate passion and priority in life, “he works for you and provides all your needs” The cure for worry is found in these simple words: Keep the Main Thing the Main Thing! First things first. Stop worrying and start seeking. Stop worrying about your little kingdom and start seeking God’s big kingdom first. Nothing about this is passive or indifferent. Be active and be aggressive. Go for God and his kingdom agenda with all you have and watch him take care of everything you need.
More in Pastor Wade's Blog
November 13, 2023Thy Kingdom Come!
October 30, 2023Reflecting on the Five Greatest Truths of the Reformation!
October 23, 2023Rapture Fever Has Exploded- Again!