Summary: To live our lives within the context of the eternal purposes of God and understand that we are called to be Kingdom Builders.
Kingdom Minded People
Talk about being …
Kingdom minded and
having a Kingdom heart, for the
purpose of building God’s Kingdom.
Cyrus was a mighty king- conquered Babylon.
Jews- carried into captivity under Nebuchadnezzar.
God calls Cyrus by name 150 years before he lives.
Isa 44:28 "It is I who says of Cyrus, ’He is My shepherd! And he will perform all My desire.’
And he declares of Jerusalem, ’ She will be built,’ And of the temple, ’ Your foundation will be laid.’" NASU
God calls Cyrus into a position of power/influence to bring about His purposes for the Jewish people.
God was able to stir the heart of a mighty king who did not know Him or His ways.
If He can stir the heart of a mighty king, he can stir my heart/my spouse/my children/heart of a church.
As He is sovereign over kings/kingdoms, He is sovereign over the every day affairs of our lives.
He stirs the heart of Cyrus to build a house for the God of Israel in Jerusalem.
Jews prayed over/held onto these promises for them.
God does not just do things because we ask Him.
Our prayers open the way for Him to do what He wants to do for His purposes in our lives.
We must bring our heart/mind/prayers into alignment w/His plans for our lives.
Often we pray selfish prayers to satisfy our desires.
Prayer should be a vehicle, not to get our desires, but to find the heart of God to align ourselves with it.
Ja 4:3 You ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures. NASU
Our prayers may not be bad, but do they align themselves with God’ heart for our lives?
As we align our prayers w/His will, He answers them.
14 This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.
15 And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests which we have asked from Him. NASU
Back to Ezra …
God has called Cyrus to be a part of building His Kingdom, as He has called each one us to be a part
The generation carried away to Babylon had died …
Sons/daughters knew Babylon as home.
May have been established- homes, businesses.
The journey would be difficult/dangerous.
Jerusalem- in ruins, what would await them?
Heb 11:8 By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed by going out to a place which he was to receive for an inheritance; and he went out, not knowing where he was going. NASU
God stirred the hearts of the Jews- a few responded.
Only a few- rise above the earthly/embrace the eternal
Perhaps everyone not called to return, but everyone was called to be a part of building God’s Kingdom.
Those who did not return donated generously to the work to rebuild the temple of God.
Lets switch gears to the NT era, the era we live in.
He is calling us to be Kingdom minded people.
Jesus has much to say about building God’s Kingdom.
Mtt 4:23 Jesus was going throughout all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every kind of disease and every kind of sickness among the people. NASU
Jesus- taught disciples to pray about God’s Kingdom.
Mtt 6:10 ’Your kingdom come. Your will be done, On earth as it is in heaven. NASU
Jesus talked to them about Kingdom priorities …
Mtt 6:25, 33
25 " For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? NASU
33 "But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. NASU
Jesus warned them to live by Kingdom principles.
Mtt 7:21 "Not everyone who says to Me, ’Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. NASU
Jesus instructs- disciples how to minister Kingdom-
7 "And as you go, preach, saying, ’ The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’
8 "Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, cast out demons. Freely you received, freely give. NASU
God is calling each of us to be Kingdom builders.
He calling us to participate in Kingdom work.
For many, like the Jews who returned to Jerusalem, that will be helping by working in some ministry.