For the Glory of God
“Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do. And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began.” (John 17: 1b – 5 NIV)
“My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one—I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.” (John 17: 20 – 23 NIV)
These are excerpts from Jesus’ prayer for his disciples and for believers in the future who would become disciples because of the message spread by Jesus’ current disciples. The bottom line of this article is that I believe in the power of Jesus’ prayer and I believe in the power of our prayers.
We live in the world. By that I mean that there is an actual physical world and we have actual physical bodies living in that physical world. However, although we live in bodies; the bodies are not who we are! We actually are spirits. We have mind, will, and emotions that are our souls. These spirits who have these souls live in the physical bodies.
The kingdom of God is not of this world:
“Pilate then went back inside the palace, summoned Jesus and asked him, `Are you the king of the Jews?’
“`Is that your own idea,’ Jesus asked, `or did others talk to you about me?’
“`Am I a Jew?’ Pilate replied. `Your own people and chief priests handed you over to me. What is it you have done?’
“Jesus said, `My kingdom is not of this world. If it were, my servants would fight to prevent my arrest by the Jewish leaders. But now my kingdom is from another place.’
“`You are a king, then!’ said Pilate.
“Jesus answered, `You say that I am a king. In fact, the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.’
“`What is truth?’ retorted Pilate. (John 18: 33 – 38a NIV)
There are several assertions that have been made in this article either by my writing or by the quotation of scripture. Let’s list these assertions, if we can, and see if there is a logical conclusion:
- Jesus’ prayers are powerful and effective and we can expect to see His prayers answered.
- Jesus prayed that He would be glorified.
- The glory that Jesus was referring to was specifically that He and the Father are one.
- That glory was demonstrated by Jesus completing the work that Father had sent Him to do.
- Jesus prayed that we enter into His glory that He has with the Father by coming into complete unity.
- The kingdom of God demonstrated on earth is not of the world.
- The kingdom of God is from another place.
The conclusions of these assertions are that the kingdom of God is a spiritual reality that is actually on the earth but not visible to the world. The definition of the kingdom of God must be unity of the believers that is a spiritual reality and cannot be a visible reality. The kingdom of God is a spiritual entity that currently exists among us but our attempts to make it a physical entity will always fail because the creation of a physical entity would always be by human effort.
How, then, does the kingdom of God take physical form on the earth? Being human we are living in physical bodies even through our actual existence is spiritual. Therefore, we would like to see a physical demonstration of the kingdom of God.
We have just seen such a physical demonstration of the spiritual reality that is the kingdom of God on earth. Satanic reaction to the kingdom of God is terrorism in many forms. Satan’s constant struggle is to reduce creation to chaos by whatever means he can find. When God had completed creation in the beginning; Satan’s reaction to the declaration: “God saw all that he had made, and it was very good,” (Genesis 1: 31a NIV) was “Did God really say . . .” (Genesis 3: 1b NIV) So we find demonstrated Satan’s constant struggle to destroy what God has created.
The recent terrorist attacks at Charlie Hebdo in Paris, France, was another of Satan’s attempts to destroy what God has created. The reaction to that attack was unity. We find this difficult to take in. The unity was the underlying reality all along. There already existed a vast assumption of unity. This reality of unity was what Satan is attacking. Whether it is in France or Nigeria the attack was against an already existing spiritual reality of unity. In Paris the attack was against freedom of speech and in Nigeria the attack was against the right to live in peace as Boko Haram slaughtered over 2,000 innocent villagers.
My conclusion may be difficult to see because we look with the physical rather than the spiritual eyes. My conclusion is that the kingdom of God does exist in the spiritual realm and can be seen by the spiritual eyes of those who are willing to look. For most of us we only see Satan’s reaction to the spiritual reality and conclude that the world is getting worse. However, when there is an act of Satan violent enough to excite world opinion; there will be demonstration of unity that reveal the existence of the kingdom of God among us.