Summary: Learn what it means to enter the kingdom of God and how you may do it.
Lifestyles of the Kingdom 1: Entering the Kingdom
Matt. 3:1-2; 4:12-17; 10:1-7
Today is the first lesson of a series on “Lifestyles of the Kingdom”
A number of years ago there was a show with Robin Leach called “Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous”
The purpose of the show was to look into the way a rich and famous people lived
Similarly, in this series, we will peer into the lifestyles that make us vital as citizens of the Kingdom of God
When I say lifesyles of the kingdom, I do not mean laws of the kingdom
Laws are underlying principles that govern the actions of individuals and provide tangible, corresponding, and predictable results
In order to understand some of the material we will cover we need to difine what we mean by the kingdom of God or the kingdom of heaven
First of all, let’s look at what the kingdom is not.
It is not limited to a future experience
It is “at hand”
It is not restrained to spiritual activity and existence
God never intended for there to be a barrier between heavenly things and earthly things
God “walked” with Adam in the garden
The only barrier between earthly and heavenly was made by man through sin
The veil of the temple was removed when Jesus died
Sin was permanently removed as a barrier through the sacrifice of Jesus
The kingdom is the infrastructure of all human culture
Let’s consider what an infrasture is or does.
Utilities systems: Provides access to water, electricity, gas, telephone, etc.
When you visit other nations, it is one of the things that you notice that obviously restrains the development of society (thinking in western perspectives)
Freeway and road systems
Provides access to employment opportunities and goods/services
Provides efficient shipping and transportation of raw materials and goods that used to be limited to waterways
When recognized and accessed the kingdom provides the infrastructure to human culture and activity
The spiritual laws of the kingdom allow us access to corresponding blessings
The spiritual gifts of the kingdom allow us insight and understanding that our earthly gifts and talent cannot achieve
Spiritual callings and purposes have a direct impact on whether we are fulfilled in our life
Spiritual laws govern behavior through blessings and curses
Spiritual fruit govern relationships
Spiritual power and authority are the rule of the kingdom
The kingdom of heaven is hear & now
From the scriptures
John the Baptist declared it
Matt 3:2 “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”
Jesus preached it
Matt 4:17 “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”
The apostles preached it
Matt 10:7 “The kingdom of heaven is at hand”
One translation calls it
‘the Reign of Heaven’
The Philips translation says
‘The kingdom of Heaven has arrived!’
Other translators say:
(BBE) ‘kingdom of heaven is near’
(Dby) ‘kingdom of the heavens has drawn nigh’
(3:2) ‘majesty of the heavens’ (4:17) ‘royal dignity of the heavens’ (10:7) kingdom of the heavens
(Wey) ‘the Kingdom of the Heavens is not close at hand’
when the bible was translated into the Aztec language they had no word that would translate the concept of kingdom. The Wycliffe Translator came up with the following to help them understand: The kingdom of God was translated the Loving rule of Father
Kingdom - (932; from 935) Properly, royalty, ie. (abstract) rule or (concrete) realm (lit/fig).
(935; from 939 through the notion of a foundation of power) a sovereign:--king
(939) from word meaning to walk; a pace
So when we talk about the KINGDOM we are talking about a walk.
It is a lifestyle
We do not live and act however we want.
Heaven - (3772 draws from a root word the idea of ‘elevation’) the sky; by extension, heaven (as the abode of God).
What we have so far
The pace/walk (a foundation of power) of heaven (where God lives)
Your walk as a believer is to be empowered by the source of heaven which is God!
At hand/near - (1448; from 1451) to make near, approach
(1451; from a primary verb - to squeeze or throttle) NEAR (lit or fig, of place or time)
NASA - space shuttle: Throttle up!
The walk of the source of heaven is being throttled up!
Ladies and gentlemen: Start your engines!
How do we enter the kingdom (conclusion)
v3 Born again - SEE the kingdom of God
See = know, be aware
v6 Born of water and Spirit - ENTER the kingdom of God
Enter = to enter, arise, come into
Two part word
Primary preposition indicating the point reached or enter of place, time or purpose
Entering the kingdom is a point of purpose
Primary verb to come or to go: -- accompany, appear...