Pastor Austen Ukachi
OUR KINGDOM MANDATE
The word “kingdom” in Hebrew is mamlekah, which is translated as dominion or sovereign rule. The Greek equivalent is basileia. When God created Adam and Eve, in Genesis 1:26, he commanded them to have dominion over all creation. Dominion here stands for government. By implication, God wanted man to establish the government of heaven over the earth. He wanted Adam and Eve to establish rulership on the earth. This divine plan of God has not changed.
Miles Munroe defines a kingdom as “the government of a king….a kingdom is the sovereign rulership and governing influence of a king over his territory, impacting it with his will, his intent, and his purpose, manifesting a culture and society, reflecting the king’s nature, values, morals. A kingdom is the governing impact of a king’s will over a territory or domain, his influence over a people, and a government led by a king”. We can then understand what Jesus had in mind when he asked us to pray for his kingdom and will to be done on the earth as it is in heaven. It is his desire to see his will, values, and morals to prevail all over the earth as it is in heaven.
THE CONFLICT OF KINGDOMS
Just as God has a kingdom, Satan has his own kingdom. If the kingdom of God has to be established and advanced on the earth then, Satan, the Prince of this world would resist it. There is bound to be a conflict between both kingdoms. Satan sees this earth as his turf and wants to remain in control; he will resist any attempt to displace him.
Daniel’s vision in chapter 2 reveals that there is an ongoing conflict between the kingdoms of the earth. The conflict will continue until Christ returns; until Revelations 11:15 is fulfilled. In this fierce and prolonged conflict there are no spectators; you are either on the side of God or on the side of the devil.
SCRIPTURAL SYMBOLS OF THIS CONFLICT BETWEEN KINGDOMS
The conflict between Moses and Pharaoh and his magicians is symbolic of this conflict between kingdoms. This conflict was a conflict between God and the gods of Egypt (Genesis 3:15; Exodus 7:8-13; 8:16-19; 10:21-28) Again, God’s command to Jeremiah in chapter 1:10,17-19 further highlights the nature of this conflict.
The following New Testament texts are equivalents of this relentless conflict between two kingdoms: Ephesians 6:10-18; Matthew 6:10; Matthew 12:22-29; and Revelations 12:7-13. As in any type of warfare, we need weapons to gain mastery over our opponents. Our weapons of warfare, as clearly stated in 2 Corinthians 10:3-5; Ephesians 6:11-18, are not carnal, but mighty through God to demolishing strongholds.
KINGDOMS IN CONFLICT (2)
In part 1 of our series on Conflict of Kingdoms, we tried to establish the fact that there is a long conflict between the kingdom of God and the kingdom of darkness. One only needs to read 2 Timothy 3:1-4 to realize how intense and multi-dimensional this conflict would assume in this endtime. The praxis of this conflict could be represented this way:
A conflict between light and darkness (Ezekiel 11: 1-13; Ephesians 5:8)
A conflict between good and evil.
A conflict between Christianity and other religions. Recently, there have been barbaric killings of Christians in Kenya, Pakistan, in Bornu and Yobe states in Nigeria, just to mention a few. These are evidences of this conflict.
A conflict between righteousness and wickedness. Philip’s encounter with Simon the sorcerer in Samaria is an example.
A conflict between ethics, morals and immoral values
A conflict between purity and impurity (1 Thessalonians 4:1-4).
A conflict between truth and falsehood (Jude 1:3-4)
A conflict between the Spirit of obedience and the prevalence of lawlessness (2 Thessalonians 2:7; 2 Timothy 3:1-4).
A conflict between the Spirit and the flesh (Galatians 5:17)
A conflict between knowledge and ignorance
A conflict between the word of God and elemental forces (Matthew 13:4-7; 24-31)
A conflict between the philosophy of humanism and the deity of God.
A conflict between environmentalist and creationist
These conflicts exist in every locality and strata of our society; they exist in professional groups, in social, business and political formations and cultural associations. In short, they exist in the Seven Mountains of the society, and that is the real battle ground of the conflict. It is against these forces operating through human agents we are called to establish the kingdom of God. Our calling is to reign in Christ within the spheres of these Seven Mountains and to entrench the influences of God’s kingdom.
KINGDOMS IN CONFLICT (3)
The story between the kingdoms of Saul and David exemplifies this earthly conflict of two kingdoms. God uses the earthly and familiar to teach us lessons on spiritual issues. This time, it is the kingdom of David which God was propping up and the kingdom of Saul which God has rejected.
2 Samuel 3:1 says there was a long war between the house of Saul and the house of David; and the attrition on Saul’s kingdom was gradual. On the other hand, David kingdom was built up gradually. Day by day volunteers enlisted into his army to help him until they became a formidable army (1 Chronicles 12:22). In a similar way the kingdom of God is built up through a gradually process. Since the coming of Christ on earth the kingdom is being built.
1 Chronicle 12: 22,23 reads: “For at that time, day by day there came to David to help him, until it was a great host, like the host of God. And these are the number of bands that were ready armed to the war, and came to David to Hebron, to turn the kingdom of Saul to him, according to the word of the LORD.”
There are 4 points to note in 1 Chronicles 12:22-23.
- The volunteers were equipped for war. Who equipped them and how? God equips his army for battle (Ephesians 6:10-18; 2 Corinthians 10:3-5).
- The volunteers came voluntarily. They identified with David in his trials. We enlist into God’s army voluntarily and pledge our loyalty to Christ.
- The volunteers had a singular purpose which was, “to turn over the kingdom of Saul to David,” that was their determination and goal. What is our goal in the kingdom of God?
- The volunteers cause was long predicted, “according to the word of God“. Which word? God had declared that the kingdom would be turned over to David, the progenitor of our Lord Jesus Christ. (See 1 Samuel 16:1-4; Psalms 89:19-23). We are called to bring to fulfilment what has been ordained and decreed against Satan (Psalms 110:1-2; Matthew 6:13)
According to Hebrews 12:28, we belong to an unshakeable kingdom. Our goal is to pray for the establishment of the emerging kingdom.
KINGDOMS IN CONFLICT (4)
THE MIND AS A BATTLE GROUND
There is a saying that, “where the mind goes, the man goes.” Whatever dominates the mind of man dominates the man. The writer of Proverbs in chapter 23:7 puts it this way, “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he…” That is to say, man is a product of his thoughts and mind. We obey our mind.
The mind of man is a battleground in the ongoing conflict between two kingdoms; the kingdom of light and the kingdom of darkness or the power of good versus evil. The battle of the mind started at Eden, where Satan tried to control the minds of Adam and Eve. Whoever controls the mind of man controls the man. Satan assaulted Eve’s mind and succeeded in gaining an entrance into her mind. Once Eve’s mind was overwhelmed by Satan’s lies she was subdued to believe the devil and to disobey God. That the mind is a battleground is obvious from what happened at the Garden of Eden between Eve and the serpent.
The following points should be noted in this conflict:
First, what is the mind of man? It is from the Greek word “nous”. The mind is the faculty of thinking, knowing, the seat of understanding, the seat of moral reflection. It also represents the new nature of man.
Secondly, what does the bible say about the mind as a battle ground. We can read Galatians 5:17 and 1 Peter 2:11 to find out. Satan is constantly assaulting our minds with ungodly images, feelings, pictures, thoughts and ideas.(e.g. thoughts of suicide, pornography, destruction, stealing, killing) This is why Proverbs admonishes us to guard or keep our hearts from it proceeds the issues of life. The Good News Translation of Proverbs 4:23 reads, “Be careful how you thinks; your life is shaped by your thoughts.” (Also Luke 21:25,26,34-36.)
Thirdly, the bible in Romans 8:5-8, defines two kinds of minds: the sin dominated mind and the Spirit dominated mind. These are in conflict with each other.
In Galatians 5:16,25; Romans 8:11 and Romans 7:25, we discover the secret to victory in the conflict of the mind. It is only by submitting to Christ and living a life of the Spirit that we can have total victory over the conflicts of the mind.
Note that in the warfare defined in 2 Corinthians 10:3-5, the strongholds exist in the human mind. We are asked to pull down these strongholds and everything that exalts itself against the knowledge of Christ. Just as the Scriptures says a lot about this conflict that rages in the mind of man, so does it say a lot about how to gain victory.
HOW DO YOU WIN IN THE BATTLE OF THE MIND?
- Meditating on the word of God, (Psalms 1:5-6; 119:97; Joshua. 1:8; Proverbs 4:20-22). Psalms 1:1-3; 19:14; 63)
- Meditation takes place in the heart, and eventually should lead to appropriate confession.
- We need to pray constantly
- Praise and Worship should be our life style if we want to be in control of our mind.
- Submit your mind entirely to the Spirit and you will be at peace with God (Galatians 5:16,25; Romans 8:11; Isaiah 26:3; Psalms 125:1).
- Resist the devil, and he will flee (Romans 6:12-14).