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Passion of the Kingdom
Posted: 12/09/2010 at 8:53am
By Ron McGatlin
The most precious commodity we each have is not our home, money, or business; it is our life. The living reality of our body, soul, and spirit are the most precious possessions we each have to invest. We invest our lives here on earth into what we are most passionate about. When our lives are finished on earth, we will have spent it for what we deemed most precious at the time.
I am concerned that more people than would want to admit it will have to conclude, after boiling it all down to the core, that the most precious thing is for them to pleasure their flesh - to be entertained - to "have fun" - to be in comfort - to be the best or have the best. I do not know what passion delights your soul. However, I do know that for about the first third of my life, fleshly pleasure of getting what I wanted and comfort were number one for me.
For what will we spend or give the remainder of our lives?
What is my obsession? Where do I get my delight in life? What is the real desire of my heart? For what am I willing to give my life? What is my passion?
Again, I cannot say about you, but for me it was changed and forever settled years ago. When God opened the heavens and poured into my spirit and soul the revelation of His kingdom, my heart, spirit, and soul were consumed with passion for the kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven. All of my possessions, relationships, and my entire life as it had been were all traded for the kingdom. It became my number one priority and the passion of my life. Jesus described it this way.
Mat 13:44-46: "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid; and for joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.
Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls, "who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had and bought it.""
The teachings of my religion had taught me that the perfect pearl and the great hidden treasure was Jesus saving me to go to heaven when I died. Religion had also taught me that the kingdom was not for now but after Jesus bodily returned to earth some day. He would then establish His kingdom. Until then we just had to endure and get by in an evil world as sinners saved by grace bound for heaven. We were saved sinners and could not stop sinning in this life and must confess our sins often and receive forgiveness. I was also taught by religion that the powerful spiritual gifts along with apostles and prophets were no longer available because we now have the completed Bible. These and other false concepts are being dissolved by the revelation of the kingdom and replaced with kingdom reality.
A greater work than religion is coming forth today. Most of you reading this are aware that there is a major shift away from religion. The Christian religion since about the third century has been a mixture of truth and traditions of men enhanced by doctrines of demons. In this season on earth, there is a move to return to the same message Jesus and His disciples proclaimed, the kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven - the gospel of the kingdom. This move has to do with a LOVE relationship with God first and then with one another and is not religious doctrines and traditions.
At OpenHeaven.com our passion is to be a part of the worldwide shift into real relationship with God and His people and to proclaim the real kingdom of God from heaven on earth in Christ Jesus by the Holy Spirit. The kingdom of God is not from this fallen world.
There is ongoing tension between religion and the emerging kingdom of God reality. In general, traditionalist and religionist of various persuasions all despise the word of the kingdom and oppose it, sometimes viciously. Often they stone kingdom people with the rocks of their hardened religious convictions.
The tension is not eased a lot by the love and forgiveness that kingdom people feel for their brothers who oppose them. Most of us can easily understand the passion with which people defend their convictions that have been firmly planted in them by the church systems. Many of us have been in the same place. Some reading this are not yet ready to release some of the teachings that have become as rocks of truth in our hearts. It is natural and reasonable to oppose that which does not match up with our previous doctrinal beliefs. Only the Holy Spirit can reveal the word of the kingdom that is so clearly written in the Bible but remains hidden mysteries until God removes the cover, opens our eyes, and reveals the gospel of the kingdom to us.
Consider also the false and immature kingdom people who are secretly seeking to build their own kingdom while also proclaiming the kingdom of God. These also may oppose the humble, pure, holy spiritual kingdom that flows from the mature sons into the world. Opposition will be encountered as we continue to obey God instead of man and preach Christ Jesus and His gospel of the kingdom of God - kingdom of heaven.
The opposition toward the real kingdom of God is increasing in this season because the message of the kingdom that was mostly hidden from view for centuries is now coming forth among a growing remnant of pure-hearted holy believers in whom Christ dwells by the Holy Spirit. In the past, religion mostly fought against religion splitting over doctrinal divisions again and again. Now, much of religion has a common enemy. The revealed kingdom of God that brings forth truth, which can dissolve much of their traditional doctrines, is a serious threat to religious systems.
Jesus saw this coming in the first century and spoke clearly to the disciples warning them of the tension to come. The gospel of the kingdom that Jesus and His disciples preached was then and always will be an offense to religionist. Many Christians are probably still more religious and more affected by doctrines of demons and traditions of men than they realize.
Mat 10:34-42: "Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword. "For I have come to 'set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law'; and 'a man's enemies will be those of his own household.'
"He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. "And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. "He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it.
"He who receives you receives Me, and he who receives Me receives Him who sent Me. "He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet's reward. And he who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man's reward. "And whoever gives one of these little ones only a cup of cold water in the name of a disciple, assuredly, I say to you, he shall by no means lose his reward."
Other scripture makes it clear that Christ Jesus came to bring peace on earth. How do these two concepts fit together? Did He come to bring peace or a sword of strife?
The answer is that the gospel of the kingdom is the avenue of peace on earth. The division and strife takes place as the word of the kingdom invades the religious minds and principalities or strongholds of religious beliefs that for centuries have hidden the truth of the gospel that Jesus preached.
The gospel of the kingdom is not just another religious view as some surmise. It is the higher truth that will bring all truth under its umbrella of Godís love and glory.
Yet, not all can hear the word of the kingdom. They may hear the gospel of salvation or literally the gospel of being born again which is the first and a very essential part of the gospel of the kingdom. However, those who continue to fill their minds with religion and refuse to have their hearts prepared cannot hear the word of the kingdom. Hearts trampled upon and wounded by lifeís experiences may have hardened heart soil that must be broken up and softened to grow the seed of the kingdom. Rocks of hardened religious beliefs must be thrown out or broken up to make room for the seed to grow. Thorn bushes of the cares of this life and the deceitfulness of riches must be pulled up and cast out for the seed of the word of the kingdom to grow to fruition. Brokenness and an empty heart coming into the loving presence of God will have the good heart soil that can hear the word of the kingdom and grow it to fruition.
We at OpenHeaven.com are involved in the transition with people who are at many different places or levels of receiving the gospel of the kingdom. We are genuinely appreciated and loved by many who are receiving the kingdom and despised by some who are unwittingly fighting against the gospel of the kingdom. We are accused of being heretics and teaching false doctrines of dominionism to take over the world by political and even militant force. We are despised and even hated by those who are not yet given an ear to hear the gospel of the kingdom.
We endure those things because there is a growing remnant who are growing in the love and grace of the real gospel of the kingdom. Like those who oppose, we ourselves were once of the same religious mind and were not always tolerant of anyone with a word that threatened our religious traditions. For many it seemed we were losing our lives as we laid down our all including our doctrines and beliefs at the alter of God and waited upon Him to return what He wanted us to have and replace the rest with His reality of love and truth. It was indeed like a death and rebirth into a whole new way of intimate love relationship with Him and no longer about just seeking to know about Him and trying to keep His ways.
Christ Jesus is alive and well in the hearts of His people by the Holy Spirit today. He walks with us, talks with us, and is joy and peace beyond compare. Christ in you is the great mystery of heaven coming to earth to rule and reign in and through the hearts of His people. Humble brokenness is the way to the kingdom of God on earth as it is in heaven. Righteousness becomes a reality as the life-giving Spirit of Christ lives in us and fills our hearts and lives.
Alas, we are not yet all there and are in different places as we come together to share and fellowship with one another seeking to encourage and assist one another to grow into maturity in our walk in the Spirit toward the New Jerusalem - kingdom of God lifestyle.
Thank you to all of you who are working to bring the glorious gospel of the kingdom into the reach of multitudes around the world. Your love and sacrifices are surely pleasing to our Lord.
I believe that all walking in the now kingdom of God would say with me that trading all that was precious to us in our lives for life in the kingdom is the best bargain we ever made. All of the hardships, painful rejections, and wilderness wanderings were used to build more love and humility and are not to be compared with the glory of the kingdom life of righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. (First Posted: 02/14/2008)
Love and Respect,