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Christian Living

True Christian living requires us to live according to Kingdom standards which bring Heaven to earth

Living in the Promises of God
Part 4 - Seeking
By: Frank L. Hoffman

Mary and I have been amazed at the number of professing Christians who live in fear and not in the promises of God.  They fear "commies", "pinkos", democrats, liberals, environmentalists, the media, and even their fellow Christians who don't believe in war, capital punishment, or in the killing and eating of animals.  They fight for the cause of pro-life, but only as far as the saving of human unborn babies, and then mostly in the so-called "Christian world".  In their fear and worry (anxiety) they arm themselves and hoard food, and are even prepared to kill anyone who threatens their possessions. 

Such people are following a deceiving voice.

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said (Matthew 6:31-34 NASV):

veggies.jpg (6769 bytes)31.  "Do not be anxious then, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'With what shall we clothe ourselves?'

32.  "For all these things the Gentiles (non-believers) eagerly seek; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.

33.  "But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you.

34.  "Therefore do not be anxious for tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for [or worry about] itself.  Each day has enough trouble of its own.

fruitbowl.jpg (6391 bytes)The key to our understanding of seeking and living in the promises of God is contained in verse 33: "But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you." We are to be seeking BOTH God's kingdom and His righteousness.  If we seek these "first"; if we seek these states of being before anything else, and we believe this promise, then there should be no fear or anxiety.

We should know from Revelation 21:4 that in heaven there will no longer be any tears, or any death, or any mourning, or any crying, or any pain.  Why?   Because such things shall have passed away.  This is not just for some far distant future.  It's for today, too.

bread-rev.jpg (6977 bytes)In our passage from the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus is telling us to seek the kingdom of God in the here and now.  In Matthew 3:2, He tells us, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand."   This means that the kingdom is within our reach.  If we believe, we can and should have kingdom living, now, at least as far as our field of influence extends.   Isn't this also what Jesus taught us to pray for (Matthew 6:10)?

Thy kingdom come.
Thy will be done,
On earth as it is in heaven.

Thus, in this heavenly kingdom, come to earth, and among the true believers, there should no longer be any tears, or death, or mourning, or crying, or pain which is caused by us directly or indirectly because of our indifference.  And remember, that animals also feel pain, and they do suffer and die, and they mourn just as we do.

But what about the other half of our seeking to live in the promises of God - seeking His righteousness?

In Matthew 5:6, Jesus tells us, "Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied."  People become anxious because they aren't satisfied. 

People raise and kill animals because they aren't satisfied with the vegetable food that God created and gave us (Genesis 1:29), and in turn they contribute to the destruction of the kingdom of God here on earth. 

People resort to capital punishment because they don't trust in God's righteousness, but seek their own revenge.  And, wars are fought and crimes are perpetrated because people are not satisfied with what they have.

We do these things because we have forgotten the Beatitude that ties our seeking of God's kingdom and righteousness together (Matthew 5:10): "Blessed are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."

cc-wildgeranium.jpg (5621 bytes)We can and should live in the promises of God. 

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
(Philippians 4:8 - KJV)


 

Photos by Sue Holloway - Creatured Connection, and from our archive
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