…because the kingdom of God is within you. Luke 17:21
What am I doing to advance His Kingdom? Every choice I make to obey God and do His will takes back a square inch of the Kingdom that belongs to Him yet has so grossly been given back to the enemy on account of worldly selfishness.
Are we content to just be a Christian streaker?! Someone who puts on only the comfortable helmet of salvation and avoids putting on any other part of the armor of God; intentionally trying to avoid any kind of battle on this raging battleground we live in?! Before Jesus even began His ministry He was baptized and the Father says in Mark 1:11 “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” Well pleased… yet His ministry had not hardly begun… could it be so pleasing to the Father just to present a heart that is willing to go?!! Willing to fully suit up, willing to do battle in Him to take back a Kingdom that is rightly His in-spite of our insecurities, failures and fears?!
At once the Scripture says in Mark 1:12 after the Father says He is well pleased Jesus is sent into the battle field, the desert with the wild animals and Satan BUT He didn’t go alone, Scripture says that angels attended Him (verse 4). Neither do we go alone (Matthew 28:20) 2 Peter 1:3-4 states, His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires. So we have EVERYTHING we need, He has given us His very great and precious promises so that we can participate in the battle! Jesus was no streaker, He was fully suited up and used that Sword of the Spirit well at every attack of the devil and so should we!
Luke 4:2 says it was at the end of Jesus 40 day fast in the desert that the devil came to him. Isn’t that so typical of the enemy to wait until you are already at the end of your rope to bring his worst! But Jesus says He will be with us until the end of the age so if its the end of our rope but not the end of the age, He’s still there too!!
At the end of the passage on the temptation of Jesus in the desert in Matthew 4:1-11 verse 11 states, Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him. So it seems peace may often come following obedience to His will and way and not before. So when the devil tempts you with the kingdoms of the world like He did Jesus in Luke 4:5 we can do what He did if we are fully suited up and wield the Sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God! 1 John 2:17 states, The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever.
In the end it will be God who handles the results of your battle. God is in charge of opening hearts even John the baptist says in John 1:33 I would not have known him, except that the one who sent me to baptize with water told me. He is the beginning and the end and holds all the in between together so I would do well to concern myself with the mission He has revealed to me and like Andrew who is always seen bringing people to Jesus… his brother Peter and the little boy with five loaves and two fish… Andrew didn’t have all the answers but he knew Who did and he pointed the way to Him! John 1:43 Jesus calls Philip and Philip calls Nathaniel (verse 45) even though Jesus saw Nathaniel before Philip (verse 48) Jesus used Philip to reach him first! God wants to use us; flawed as we are!! Are we willing to be more than a Christian streaker?
If so we need to be ready in season and out. Luke 4:13 states, When the devil had finished all this tempting, he left him until an opportune time. Lets not give him an opportune time and suit up in the FULL armor of God at all times!
Jesus, whether history ever records our names or not let our motivation, our rejoicing be in the fact that you have already won the battle; that we only fight from victory not for it and that our names are already written in the book of life, but only because You were willing to have Yours blotted out through taking our place on the cross. Let Your sacrifice in my place be more than enough motivation to embolden this warrior to suit up fully and fight for every square inch of Your Kingdom, to point to You within me one decision, one choice, one heart at a time, in Your strength and for Your glory.
Independent read: Matthew 24:35, Luke 12:12, Joshua 1:9, John 3:16, Revelation 3:16, Luke 2:10, Isaiah 61:1, Revelation 22:13, Romans 14:11, Romans 8:31, Hebrews 13:5-6, Psalm 27:1