God’s kingdom or man’s world?

I have come home at last! This is my real country! I belong here. This is the land I have been looking for all my life, though I never knew it till now.[1]

Where do you live?

We all have two worlds to choose from. There’s sinful earth—which isn’t just damaged, it’s ruined, irreparable and condemned. And there’s God’s kingdom—immeasurable, eternal, overflowing with love and wonder.

Should be an easy choice. But it’s not, because we’re trained and conditioned to gaze around rather than up. And gazing around, we see shiny things and sparkly things, along with rich, warm things, useful things and enviable things. So we spend our lives reaching for them, earning them, gathering them and packing them around us like birds building nests. Each nest becomes a world, our world, which we view as a very important world but, from a distance, is just another nest, another tiny kingdom.

Kingdoms throughout the Old Testament were often little more than sovereign towns—unlike like Britain, the world’s largest empire with its dominions, colonies, protectorates, mandates and other territories, all ruled by a single king or queen. By 1913, George V ruled more than 400 million people, and Great Britain would soon cover nearly a quarter of the earth.

Canaan,[2] on the other hand, overflowed with kings. Joshua conquered thirty-one Canaanite kings.[3] Adonibezek conquered seventy.[4]

Most people remain content and protective of their little kingdoms, unwilling to take off their crowns and walk out their little gates through the breathtaking gates into God’s Kingdom.

The twelve gates are twelve pearls—each gate made of one pearl. And the street of the city was pure gold, clear as crystal.[5]

They refuse to surrender their independence to become totally dependent on the God who created them, who loves them inconceivably and is eager to share everything in his unimaginable Kingdom with them forever.

Which are you? Have you chosen man’s world or God’s Kingdom? I’m talking about relationship, not religion.

“Knowing the correct password—saying ‘Master, Master,’ for instance—isn’t going to get you anywhere with me. What is required is serious obedience—doing what my Father wills. I can see it now—at the Final Judgment thousands strutting up to me and saying, ‘Master, we preached the Message, we bashed the demons, our God-sponsored projects had everyone talking.’ And do you know what I am going to say? ‘You missed the boat. All you did was use me to make yourselves important. You don’t impress me one bit. You’re out of here.’[6]

Few of those who fill churches today are Christ-followers. That’s nothing new. It’s been exactly like that for centuries. And it’s not important.

All that is important is, are you?


Feature Image: King George V.

[1] Lewis, C.S., The Last Battle, Book 7 in The Chronicles of Narnia, Collier Books, 1956, p. 171.

[2] Located in the Levant region of present-day Lebanon, Syria, Jordan and Israel.

[3] Joshua 12:9,24.

[4] Judges 1:7.

[5] Revelation 21:21, TPT.

[6] Matthew 7:21-23, MSG.