Even in the time of Jesus, his followers had real difficulty in comprehending the Kingdom of God. The Kingdom of God was more than an institution of physical composition. Being asked by the Pharisees when the Kingdom of God was coming, Jesus answered, “The kingdom of God does not come that you can watch closely for it. Nor shall they say, ‘See here!’ or ‘See there!’ for the kingdom of God is within you!” (Luke 17:20-21)
When Jesus uttered the simple request to His Father, “Thy kingdom come,” He was inviting His Father to establish His Kingship in the hearts and lives of men. It conveys the request to have divine sovereignty, God’s government, set up in human life.
When all is said and done, most of us believe we are the king of our own castle. We determine our own destinies; we arrange our own affairs; we govern our own lives.
When I say, “Thy kingdom come,” I am willing to relinquish the rule of my own life, to give up governing my own affairs, to abstain from making my own decisions in order to allow God, by His indwelling Spirit, to decide for me what I shall do.
When that Kingdom comes, when it is established, what are its chief attributes and characteristics? The government of God within my life establishes an inner state in which righteousness, peace, and joy in a spiritual dimension dominate my days.
- Righteousness refers to right living, which embraces attitudes, conduct, and relationships with God, others, and myself.
- Peace is based upon being at peace with God, with others, and with ourselves.
- Joy with the strength of God, no matter how stormy life may be.
“Thy will be done.” God’s will. What is it? The will of God is simply God’s intention. It is what He purposes. It is what He plans and wants to be done. Fortunately for us, the will of God has found expression in both His work and in His words. It has been made clear to us not only in what He has done and still does but also in what He said and still says.
The will of God continues to work for man’s redemption, for his restoration to the family of God, for his rebirth and renewal as children of God. The ongoing of God’s will will result in the millennial kingdom and the creation of a new heaven and a new earth of such a quality that nothing we now know can be compared to it.
The second half of the will of God has found expression in words. Through His written word, we can obtain clear and explicit concepts of what He wants. The Bible gives us clear instructions about everyday matters as what we should eat; how we should think; how we should work; how we should handle our money; how we should treat our wives, husbands, children and parents. Furthermore, it is not enough just to study God’s Word. It is not enough just to know what the will of God is. One then has to comply with it. It is essential to see that our time, our talents, our temperaments, our possessions of all things, and our energy shall be used according to His will and intentions for them.
An excerpt from A Layman Looks at the Lord’s Prayer by W. Phillip Keller