A summary and discussion questions are below. His summary texts are:
Jesus began with an announcement: “Repent, because the kingdom of heaven has come near!” (Matt. 4:17).
His teaching was designed to show people how they might enter the Kingdom of God, “For I tell you, unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven” (Matt. 5:20).
His mighty works were intended to prove that the Kingdom of God had come upon them, “If I drive out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come to you.” (Matt. 12:28).
Ladd says that the best definition of “kingdom” is the rank, authority and sovereignty exercised by a king. When the nobleman in Luke 19 went to a far country to “receive a kingdom” it wasn’t to get land or people, it was for authority.
As we pray:
Your kingdom come.
Your will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.
In this prayer, we ask for the extension of God’s authority to be as complete on earth as it already is in heaven. We are asking that the ignorance and resistance to His reign on earth become overwhelmed by the power of the Gospel. As God’s kingdom expands across new people groups, the extension of His reign with be like the growth of a mustard seed or the rising influence of leaven (Matt. 13); it starts small and grows in size and influence.
Questions for Discussion and Reflection:
- Describe what we can observe on earth as God’s kingdom and reign expands.
- How do we practically follow Paul or Philip’s example in these verses, “…And he welcomed all who visited him, proclaiming the kingdom of God and teaching the things concerning the Lord Jesus Christ with full boldness and without hindrance,” (Acts 28:30-31), or “But when they believed Philip, as he preached the good news about the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, both men and women were baptized,” (Acts 8:12)?
- How does Revelation 7:9, “After this I looked, and there was a vast multitude from every nation, tribe, people, and language, which no one could number, standing before the throne and before the Lamb” give us confidence in the unstoppable expansion of the kingdom across cultures?