CHRISTIANS WHO REIGN--AS KINGS
In a previous note (concerning Revelation 1:5), Jesus appeared as "the prince of the kings of the earth"--KING of kings and LORD of lords.
That note emphasized BIBLE PROPHECY, which showed EARTHLY kings--as COMPARED to the mighty, just and fair KINGSHIP of Jesus. Today, I'll offer a note which again presents the KINGSHIP of Jesus, plus WHAT it means to us as Christians--this flows into a PERSONAL APPLICATION.
Revelation 1:6--"And hath made us KINGS and PRIESTS unto God and His Father; to Him be the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen."
Is it God's will that His people be oppressed, defeated and helpless in the midst of a wicked generation? Are we to live our earthly lives in hopelessness, rolling over to be passive while enemies and events render us null and void? Are we to be weak and ineffective? Are we to whine, cry and lament while evil rears up around us? Are we to grumble "Woe is me...I'm so victimized..."?
God NEVER intended His people to fall in defeat under the onslaught of evil--whether it's invading armies, wicked governments, or ANY OTHER problems or robberies which may rear their ugly heads. Even in the Old Testament, we find God leading and supporting His people through terrible situations. God was THERE for them, and His Spirit ENERGIZED Biblical heroes who LED His people in times of great want, need and warfare.
With the "Kingship" of Jesus, our personal victories are ASSURED--IF we'll lay hold of what He's provided by FAITH in ACTION. Christians are called "to rule and reign" with Christ--like kings.
When we read Revelation 1:6, we might jump to the conclusion that reigning with Jesus as kings is our FUTURE destiny--that this will occur AFTER we arrive in heaven. THIS IDEA IS INCORRECT.
Let my clarify. Yes, we WILL rule and reign with Jesus in heaven, AND with Him from His earthly Throne in the Millennial Kingdom, BUT there's so much more. It's the key to our LIVING LIVES of VICTORY in the HERE AND NOW.
Let's look at Romans 5:17. "For if by ONE man's offense death reigned by one (Adam), MUCH MORE they which RECEIVE abundance of GRACE and the GIFT OF RIGHTEOUSNESS shall REIGN IN LIFE by ONE Christ Jesus."
Christians are given GRACE--God's gift of POWER and STRENGTH through Jesus. Christians have also RECEIVED the gift of RIGHTEOUSNESS through Christ. With these attributes, we are CALLED to REIGN in THIS EARTHLY LIFE by one Christ Jesus! We can draw upon the POWER that Jesus has given us and OVERCOME. No demon, no enemy, no circumstance should cause us to BOW our heads in defeat. We have mighty WEAPONS given to us by Jesus for the PULLING DOWN of strongholds.
There's more scripture which shows our KINGSHIP with Jesus, and which declares that we are a ROYAL priesthood. I'll cite a few. (I'm attempting to be brief in a subject which has PROMPTED whole BOOKS to be written. This is indeed a LARGE SUBJECT--A LIFE OF VICTORY for Christians by FAITH in Jesus--AND by FAITH in ALL the promises of God.)
Ephesians 2:5-7--"Even when we were dead in our sins, (He) has quickened us (brought us to resurrection life) TOGETHER with Christ, and has RAISED US UP together, and has made us to SIT TOGETHER in heavenly places in Christ Jesus."
This passage shows a two-fold meaning: (1.) In our EARTHLY LIFE right NOW, we are LIFTED UP spiritually in Jesus to SIT in heavenly places (the spiritual) realm WITH HIM. To SIT is to have RULERSHIP, and to REIGN as "kings" WITH Jesus. We accomplish this BY THE POWER OF THE HOLY SPIRIT who DWELLS in us RIGHT NOW.
(2.) We'll also SIT with Christ to RULE and REIGN with Him in His earthly Millennial Kingdom--for a thousand years. I can add this--(3.) We'll SIT with Christ to RULE and REIGN with Him forever and ever throughout eternity.
2 Peter 2:9--"But you are a chosen generation, a ROYAL PRIESTHOOD, a holy nation, a peculiar people; that you should show forth the praises of Him Who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light."
The phrase "ROYAL PRIESTHOOD" is another way to say that we are "kings and priests" with Jesus. When we WALK IN OUR CALLING, living and reigning as Jesus says we can, we bring Him praises, glory and honor. It's NOT bringing PRAISES to our VICTORIOUS Lord WHEN we wallow in defeat and depression. He's given us ALL we need to WALK and LIVE in His VICTORY.
Romans 8:17--"And if children (of God), then heirs, heirs of God, and JOINT-HEIRS with Christ..."
This passage SHOWS that we Christians, as JOINT-HEIRS with Jesus, receive EVERYTHING from God THAT JESUS RECEIVES! It's so HARD for us TO GRASP "WHO" we are, TO SEE OUR POSITION in Christ, and the MIGHTY CALLING that we have IN HIM.
When Jesus gets DOMINION, we get DOMINION. When Jesus gets AUTHORITY, we get AUTHORITY. When Jesus RULES, we RULE. When Jesus REIGNS in the POWER of a KING, we REIGN in the POWER of "kings" WITH Him. When Jesus gets GLORY, we shine in His GLORY with Him! Because Jesus HAS THE VICTORY RIGHT NOW, we have THE VICTORY RIGHT NOW.
When we WALK as CHILDREN of God, and as KINGS in the REALM OF LIGHT, we exhibit the QUALITIES of God and of Jesus, RIGHT NOW, where we live, in THIS LIFE.
We must understand that ETERNAL LIFE is NOT just a FUTURE THING, but we are IN IT--RIGHT NOW. (Of course, if Jesus tarries, we WILL DIE--but we don't remain captive to death--we'll IMMEDIATELY go into God's presence in heaven. We also know that eternal life STARTED for us as SOON as we accepted Jesus as our Savior and Lord.)
More on KINGSHIP, RULING AND REIGNING:
1 Corinthians 6:2-3--The saints of the Church shall "judge the world," shall even "judge angels."
This focuses upon a time, when WITH Christ, the Church will assist in ruling by judgment. WHEN are angels judged? These are "wicked angels" who will be judged during the "Great Tribulation" (or after the Millennium), when they're cast into hell. How about "judging the world"? The Church, with Christ, during the Millennium, will assist Him in His reign on earth, and we'll help judge (or rule) in Millennial matters. The verse goes on to say that IF we will be judging the "world" and "angels," how MUCH MORE shall we RULE over things that pertain to our lives RIGHT NOW?
2 Corinthians 10:13--God has given us each a MEASURE--by which we can RULE. With this understanding, we are NOT to compare ourselves with others, BUT we should continue faithfully and humbly in the MEASURE of "rule" that the Lord has given each of us, individually. This exhortation is for THE ELIMINATION of boasting or jealousy.
2 Timothy 2:12--Our earthly walk will not always be easy. We meet obstacles, are ridiculed, are enmeshed in difficult circumstances. Our "rulership" with Christ will involve suffering. This scripture assures us that as we suffer with Him, we shall also reign with Him.
Revelation 5:10--"And hath made us unto our God kings and priests: and we SHALL REIGN on the earth." Our reigning starts in our PRESENT life; it extends into the Millennium and forever.
God calls us to rise up in the VICTORY of Jesus and to PULL DOWN ENEMY STRONGHOLDS--in ourselves, in our church fellowships, in our communities and in our world.
We have been given weapons for the pulling down of strongholds. We have the LEADING and the MIGHT of the Holy Spirit. We have the GIFT of FAITH. We have God's GRACE--His GIFT of FORGIVENESS, POWER and STRENGTH. We have the STRENGTH of PRAYER--energized by the Holy Spirit.
There are a variety of prayer TYPES, which we USE in our LIFE of REIGNING with Christ as "kings." I'll list a few (again this is a topic which has inspired BOOKS to be written. I can only offer a brief outline). YOUR HOMEWORK--SEARCH THE BIBLE FOR SCRIPTURES CONCERNING PRAYER, AND ALSO LOOK FOR BOOKS ABOUT VICTORIOUS CHRISTIAN LIVING AND THE LIFE OF PRAYER.
(1.) Prayers of INTERCESSION. A deep type of prayer where we STAND IN THE STEAD for someone else and pray DILIGENTLY. Sometimes, this kind of prayer will lead to WRESTLING in the Spirit, with groans that we may not fully understand. We pray that friends, family and others will accept Jesus as Savior and Lord. We pray for fellow Christians who need a MIGHTY touch from God. We pray about distressing or dangerous situations in the world. We pray for our leaders in government.
(2.) Prayers of PULLING DOWN STRONGHOLDS. In these prayers, we act upon Jesus' AUTHORITY to tear down FORTRESSES that the enemy has erected. Strongholds might be personal--habits or activities which do NOT glorify God, which is NOT in the WILL of God for us, which hamper and hinder us. We may have STRONGHOLDS such as--alcoholism, drugs, sexual promiscuity, cursing, gambling, stealing, etc. There may be STRONGHOLDS in our family--anger, rebellion, excessive grief, depression, poverty, etc. There may be STRONGHOLDS in our nation--corruption, lying, cheating, violence, etc. We can RISE up in the AUTHORITY of Jesus, and DEMAND that those STRONGHOLDS come down--and this is our ACT, by FAITH, of RULING and REIGNING with Christ. (We can pray like this because Christ, in His death and resurrection, gained the VICTORY over these things, and IN CHRIST, we PRAY according to that victory, IN HIS POWERFUL NAME--in His STEAD, acting upon the TRUTH that while we are ON THE EARTH, we are CHRIST'S AMBASSADORS.)
(3.) Prayers of BINDING AND LOOSING. This prayer is based upon the words of Jesus, Who said, in Matthew 18:18--"Verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever you shall BIND on earth shall be BOUND in heaven: and whatsoever you shall LOOSE on earth shall be LOOSED in heaven." This prayer is done IN JESUS' AUTHORITY, speaking with boldness to REMOVE a barrier that the devil has erected--like this, "I BIND you, Satan, in the name of Jesus. Remove your POVERTY from our household." The act of LOOSING follows that command. "And I LOOSE the PROVISION of God, Jehovah-Jireh, to fill our household with all that we need." Such a prayer is a POWERFUL ACT OF FAITH. What we BELIEVE and RECEIVE--that's what we'll get.
Prayers of PULLING DOWN STRONGHOLDS, and of BINDING and LOOSING act upon another instruction from Jesus--"For verily, I say unto you, If you have FAITH as a GRAIN OF MUSTARD seed, you shall SAY unto this MOUNTAIN, Remove hence to yonder place; and it SHALL REMOVE, and NOTHING SHALL BE IMPOSSIBLE UNTO YOU."
The DIFFICULT PART in these PRAYERS OF AUTHORITY is believing that WE INDEED have the POWER, FAITH AND AUTHORITY to pray like this. Jesus mentioned FAITH as small as a MUSTARD SEED, and He said it will gain HUGE results! Many of us fail to understand the POWER of CHRIST which dwells inside us by the presence of the Holy Spirit. (BUT if we pray, and then turn around TO WAVER or DOUBT, we'll NOT get a result) These KINDS of PRAYER OF FAITH sometimes require TIME for us to GROW into full assurance of our place IN JESUS. It sometimes takes time for us to rid ourselves of SECOND-GUESSING. However, DOUBT indeed VANISHES in our TOTAL BELIEF--when we KNOW ABSOLUTELY that God WILL DO WHAT HE SAYS HE'LL DO!
(4.) Praying by UTTERANCE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT--based on a GIFT that the Holy Spirit sent to Christians--the ABILITY to pray in UNKNOWN languages as THE SPIRIT gives UTTERANCE. 1 Corinthians 14.
There are times when we don't know HOW to pray as we ought. This is when we YIELD to the Holy Spirit and ALLOW Him to speak through us in tongues that we don't understand. By FAITH, we know He's making INTERCESSIONS that will bring answers and VICTORY.
(A DISCLAIMER--There's a controversy over this subject, just as powerful as the controversy over the Pre-Trib Rapture. I don't include this in my blog to argue--if you have questions, just ask me. I'll give you my testimony. Briefly stated--raised as a Lutheran, I had NO KNOWLEDGE that praying in tongues existed. AS I sought a closer relationship with Jesus, praying earnestly to never fall away from Him EVER, the gift of praying in tongues fell upon me spontaneously. I needed to search the scripture to discover what had happened to me. I also go by the scripture, spoken by Jesus--If an earthly father gives good gifts to his children, so will the Heavenly Father. He will NOT give scorpions or snakes to anyone who asks for the Holy Spirit. Luke 11:11 to 13.)
The topic of REIGNING in THIS LIFE as kings and priests is deep and huge. Many of us may take a FULL LIFETIME to attain the FAITH and the KNOWLEDGE to operate with ALL that Jesus has given for our success. Many times, by our DOUBTS, we make the subject MUCH HARDER than it really is. We NEED to SIMPLY believe--with a trusting, "child-like" faith.
This blog may raise more questions than can be answered at this time. WHAT I WANT YOU TO SEE IS THIS: Jesus has NOT left us POWERLESS.
Revelation 1:6 shows us a way to KNOW victory. "And hath made us KINGS and PRIESTS unto God and His Father; to HIM be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen."
May we have the eyes to see all that Jesus has so freely given us. Let's rise up and obtain the victory which is ours, through Him!
Be abundantly blessed. Jesus is LORD!