Discover Your Spiritual Identity: The Revelation of the Names and Titles God Has Given His People
"Has God not chosen the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He has promised to those who love Him?" (James 2:5b).
The word "kingdom" simply means a king's domain. God's kingdom is that over which He rules. It is permeated with His presence and infused with His attributes: His power, wisdom, love, righteousness, peace and joy (see 1 Cor. 4:20, Mark 12:32-34, Rom. 14:17). Concisely spoken, the kingdom of God is comprised of all that God is and all that God has. Everything and every being in heaven and earth, submitted to His authority, is a part of His wonderful kingdom.
This theme dominated Jesus' ministry:
— After 40 days of fasting, He came out of the wilderness preaching, "Repent! For the kingdom of heaven is at hand" (Matt. 4:17).
— His first recorded sermon began with the statement, "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven" (Matt. 5:3).
— Many of His parables started with the phrase, "The kingdom of heaven is like" (Matt. 13:24).
— His message was called "the word of the kingdom" and the revelation of the New Covenant He introduced is called "the gospel of the kingdom" (Matt. 13:19, 24:14).
— Finally, after He rose from the dead, He lingered in this world for 40 days, teaching His disciples things pertaining to "the kingdom of God" (Acts 1:3).
So, from the beginning to the end of His earthly sojourn, the establishment of this spiritual kingdom was one of Jesus' highest priorities. When His disciples asked how they should pray, the Son of God instructed them to make the request:
"Father ... Your kingdom come; Your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven" (Matt. 6:9b, 10).
Most Israelites thought this prayer would be answered in the manner of former deliverers—that the Messiah would raise up an army, banish the invaders (the Romans) and restore the promised land to its rightful owners—the seed of Abraham. But the strategy had changed—dramatically. The captain of our salvation unveiled His new battleplan with intriguing words:
"The kingdom of God does not come with observation. Nor will they say, 'Here it is!' or 'There it is!' For remember, the kingdom of God is within you" (Luke 17:20b-21).
They didn't get it at first. However, God had predetermined that the progress of the kingdom would not happen visibly by securing one blood-soaked battlefield after another. Instead, it was destined to advance invisibly, from one blood-washed heart to another.
New converts become born-again sons and daughters of the King, translated into His spiritual kingdom, to become citizens of that heavenly sphere forever. All such privileged individuals also become heirs of the kingdom, filled with the divine nature that permeates that supernatural domain—compelling them to declare truth and show love to the world—just like the King did when He walked among us (see John 3:1-5, 17:26).
This has been God's method for nearly two millennia. However, it's about to change again—drastically. On the last day of this age, God's kingdom will take over the world completely in an indescribable burst of power and majesty:
"For as the lightning flashes and lights up the heavens from one side to the other, so will the Son of Man be in His day" (Luke 17:24).
Until that final climax, all true believers are called to change the world by manifesting kingdom-character, kingdom-power and kingdom-influence everywhere we go, every single day. Don't ever underestimate the power and the potential of following the King's directives, even when the task seems small and insignificant. Remember, the kingdom has a very peculiar trait—it often hides itself in mustard-seed smallness, but then, once planted and nurtured, it grows into something so large and full-of-fruit that all who behold it say, "That had to be God."
Mike Shreve has taught on the spiritual identity of believers for over 30 years. This powerful revelation is featured on his weekly podcast on cpnshows.com and a weekly TV program on It's Supernatural Network—both titled Discover Your Spiritual Identity. It is also the theme of his Charisma House book titled WHO AM I? Dynamic Declarations of Who You Are in Christ. A product of the Jesus Movement Era, Mike has traveled evangelistically in the United States and overseas since 1970 with an emphasis on healing and the prophetic.
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