Thy Kingdom Come
In Mathew 6:5-15, the Lord taught us to pray "Our Father who art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come.”
The man who prays, "Thy kingdom come" is one who has set his mind and his affection and his desires on things above. He's not one who has put on a dress of Christianity and holiness. His spirituality is not superficial. It goes right through to the very fiber of his being. He is more interested in laying up treasures in heaven than treasures on this earth.
A Christian's attitude to money is one of the clearest tests of his spiritual level, and of whether he is really longing for the kingdom of God to come or not.
I remember hearing a story of a farmer who told his wife one day, "Our cow has just given birth to two calves, a white one and a brown one. And I thought that when they've grown up, we should give one of them to the Lord." His wife asked him, "Which one are you going to give to the Lord, the brown one or the white one?" He replied, "Well, we can decide that later when they grow up." The calves grew up and they became fatter and fatter. One day the farmer came home with a sad face and told his wife, "I've got sad news for you. The Lord's calf just died." And his wife said, "But how did you know which was going to be the Lord's calf? You hadn't decided on that yet." He said, "Oh well, all along I had it in my mind to give the brown calf to the Lord; and it just died this morning."
It is like that with most Christians. It's always the Lord's calf that dies! They give God what's left over after all their own needs have been met. And because they're not "rich towards God" they remain spiritually poor all their lives (Luke 12:21).
In the Old Testament God had made a law that the Israelites had to give their "choice first fruits" to the Lord (Exodus 23:19). This was the only way they could "honor the Lord" (Proverbs 3:9). It's the same today. We cannot honor the Lord if we don't give Him our best.
What do we find in our life? Is there always some excuse why we cannot give the best to God. Then it shows where our heart really is. Where a man's treasure is, there will his heart be also. But the man who prays, "Thy kingdom come," is a man who has been delivered from the love of money and material things. He lives for God and for eternity now.
The kingdom of God means the government of God, the absolute rulership of God. It means making Jesus Christ absolute Lord over every area of our life. If we want the kingdom of God to come, it must first come in our hearts, in our homes, and in our parishes. In these places we must give no place to Satan or to the flesh. Our longing should be that the kingdom of God should so fill our hearts, our homes and our churches that there will be no room there for anything else.
The Holy Spirit came to bring "the kingdom of God with power" to earth (I Corinthians 4:20). Our parishes should be a demonstration to the world today of what the kingdom of God is like - that which will one day cover the whole earth. Here is where we have failed the Lord.
When Jesus told us to seek God's kingdom first and not to be anxious about earthly things, what He meant was that if we really wanted to be anxious about something, we should be anxious that the kingdom of God should come on earth as it is in heaven (Matthew 6:33). How many of us are burdened with that type of anxiety - for the purity of the church and the coming of God's kingdom? May God find many among us who will seek His kingdom first.