Seeking The Kingdom

Day 2 of 7 • This day’s reading

Get Ready to Rumble!

Jesus did not exaggerate when He used the term, “violence” to describe the progress of the Kingdom in this world. The citizens of the Kingdom are engaged in a turf war of cosmic proportions. So if we want to seek the Kingdom, we’d better get ready to rumble.

Jesus said that it is necessary for us to “force” our way into the Kingdom of God (Lk. 16:16). And the reason for this is that resistance to Kingdom progress is so constant and, yes, so violent.

There are at least four reasons why advancing the Kingdom is a struggle. To discover the first, we need only look within ourselves, where the law of sin continues to mess with our minds, corrupt our affections, and confuse our priorities in this world (Rom. 7:21-23). Our “natural” inclination is to avoid discomfort and turmoil.

Second, we are engaged in an aggressive spiritual warfare with spiritual powers of wickedness in high places. The devil and his minions will do anything to distract and dissuade us from taking seriously Christ’s call to seek His Kingdom.

Third, the course of this world runs contrary to the Kingdom agenda of Christ. The believers in Thessalonica were rightly accused of standing against the spirit of their age by insisting that Jesus alone is King and must be followed and obeyed above all earthly protocols and priorities (Acts 17:1-9).

Finally, even in the Church there will be those who will try to temper our zeal, dissuade us from becoming “fanatical” in our walk with the Lord, and assure us that Jesus loves us just as we are.

Jesus said we’ll have to force our way into the Kingdom, to exert a kind of spiritual violence in order to gain that which the Father wants earnestly to give us. If you aren’t ready for a struggle in seeking the Kingdom, then you need to consider whether you are really in the same Kingdom that Jesus described.

Next steps: Try to identify the points in your life where you expect you’ll have to struggle most to make progress in the Kingdom of God. Share these with a Christian friend, and ask him or her to pray for you.