For the past few weeks, we have been letting our minds marinade in the sauce of the Lord’s prayer. This week we are looking at . . .
Thy Kingdom Come
In brief, a kingdom is a domain. It is a reign or a rule; a realm over which one has control. As followers after Christ, we constitute that kingdom with Jesus as our King.
We, Jesus’ subjects, are a chosen people, a holy nation, a kingdom of priests.1 As Christ-followers, it is our hearts’ longing that increasing numbers of men and women will be added to the reign of Christ.
We are not looking for people to “go to church.” Going to church is not an end, or even a means to an end. We yearn for men and women to come broken before the healing Lord,2 to come humbly bowed before the one who can lift us up,3 to come in weakness to the one who works through us in the strength of his might,4 to set aside our prideful self-sufficiency, and to submit to Christ’s reign over our lives.5
As Christ-followers, we pray for the reign and rule of the King in our lives and the lives of those we know. We pray for increasing submission to the reign of Christ in our lives in order to be godly fathers and mothers, godly pastors and elders, godly businessmen and women – that the King would rule in all our affairs. We pray for political leaders to become godly leaders under the reign of Christ,6 for university instructors to be godly instructors who glorify the King. We pray for national and international media outlets to be God-fearing and God-honoring expressions of his splendor. We pray for entertainers and sporting icons to bow the knee before the King, and to live lives that express his majesty and glory to all who watch them.
Thy Will be Done
If we pray with sincerity, “Thy kingdom come,” we cannot possibly follow that with anything other than “Thy will be done.” The King is the king, and we are subjects in his kingdom, carrying out his will, rather than pressing for our own will. Prayer is not intended for us to impose our will upon God, or upon any circumstance. It is, rather, a verbalization of our submission to the will of God, whatever that will may be.
“Thy will be done” is the heart of submission saying “Father, align my will with yours.” It is that place wherein we say with the prophet Samuel, “It is the LORD; let Him do what seems good to Him.”7 Jesus modeled this very posture for us in the garden before he was executed. “And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, ‘My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.’”8 Peter echoed this, exhorting us to live not after our own desires and lusts, but rather for the will of God.9
1. 1 Peter 2:9
2. Psalm 34:18
3. James 4:10
4. Ephesians 6:10
5. James 4:7
6. 1 Timothy 2:1-3
7. 1 Samuel 3:18 (NASB)
8. Matthew 26:39, (ESV)
9. 1 Peter 4:2