"Your kingdom come." Matthew 6:10a
Even though God is patient and long-suffering with the people of this world, not wanting any to perish but all to come to repentance and faith in Jesus Christ (2 Pet. 3:9), He already rules over all things and the day is coming when every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father (Eph. 1:19-23; Phil. 2:10-11). And so, we might wonder, why does Jesus direct us to pray to the Father: "Your kingdom come"?
Jesus here directs us to pray that His kingdom of mercy and grace would come to each of us and to people all over the world. Messiah Jesus was lifted up on the cross and crucified to pay the full penalty for our sins against God the Father -- He died for the sins of the whole world and rose again from the dead on the third day. But, in spite of that fact, we would go on our merry way in ignorance of the import and meaning of what took place on that Roman cross outside of Jerusalem.
Of ourselves, we cannot enter God's kingdom or be a part of it. As Jesus says, we must be born again of water and the Spirit (John 3:3ff.). And so Jesus directs His followers to pray for God's kingdom to come -- for God the Holy Spirit to graciously regenerate us through water and the Word and keep us trusting in Jesus and His shed blood for forgiveness and life everlasting. In this way, with childlike faith in Jesus and His atoning sacrifice, we are God's children and a part of His eternal kingdom. The Bible tells us: "For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ" (Gal. 3:26,27).
Not only do we pray that God's gracious kingdom would come to us, but that it would come to others also. We pray that people, both near and far, would hear the good news of salvation through faith in God's Son and that they would turn from their sinful and rebellious ways and trust in Jesus and His shed blood for forgiveness and life.
Jesus Himself was moved with compassion on the multitudes of people around Him because they were weary and scattered abroad as sheep without a shepherd. He tells us: "The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest" (Matt. 9:37-38).
Finally, we are directed to pray for Jesus' coming and the establishment of God's everlasting kingdom.
As the Scriptures teach us, "For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself" (Phil. 3:20-21).
We look forward to the day of Jesus' return in hope and longing for the blessings of His eternal kingdom (cf. Rom. 8:22-23), and so we pray: "Even so, come, Lord Jesus!" (Rev. 22:20).
Dear Father in heaven, graciously grant that Your kingdom would come to us -- that we might have a place in Your kingdom through faith in the Son, Jesus Christ, and His sacrifice upon the cross for our sins. Grant that others too, both near and far, may learn of Your mercy and forgiveness in Christ Jesus and trust in Him. And, dear Father, as You have promised, come and reign over us forever through Your only-begotten Son and our Savior, Jesus Christ. In His name, we pray. Amen.
[Devotion by Randy Moll. Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.]
Religion on 05/20/2020
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