Summary of the Sermon by Pastor Jeremy Seaward, Victory Family Life Centre, at Bethany International Service, on Sunday, 3 March 2019
The Priorities of the Kingdom of God
“From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” And Jesus, walking by the Sea of Galilee, saw two brothers, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen. Then He said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.” They immediately left their nets and followed Him. Going on from there, He saw two other brothers, James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother, in the boat with Zebedee their father, mending their nets. He called them, and immediately they left the boat and their father, and followed Him.” (Matthew 4:17-22 NKJV)
““Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls, who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had and bought it.” (Matthew 13:45-46 NKJV)
The Kingdom of God is like the parable of the pearl. Like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls, and when he had found one pearl of great price, he went and sold all that he had (Matthew 13:45). This parable illustrates the great value of the Kingdom of Heaven.
Here is the call of the first disciples when Jesus was passing by. The fisherman did something unusual. They left behind their fishing career, without much deliberation, and followed Jesus immediately. They changed their priorities instantly because of Jesus (Matthew 4:17-21).
Our priority sets our directions and we make our decisions based on our priorities. God is our King and Lord of lords; even in an earthly kingdom the king has the authority. The Kingdom of God is the same spiritually; God’s lordship and authority are in force where the citizens are governed by His priorities. Every time GOD wants to extend His authority He uses us to carry out His will.
Following Jesus changes our priority, there is a new priority in our life. God wants us to be part of His Kingdom, be part of where His domain is extended. Is my life an area where God can move? It means letting the Holy Spirit control us, living at His standard for His agendas.
God wants us to be available for His agenda. The Lord Jesus has His Mission to bring people to God. It could be that we are told to pray for a sick person in our office, to touch people around us with His power and love. As we do our part, God will work in the hearts of the people we are praying for.
We need to have a Kingdom mindset. What can we do to be part of His Kingdom?
1. It is not you, it is about me, God. We are dealing with God’s priorities into a new level of serving.
2. It is not some day, it is right now. The Kingdom of God is now. Act now to respond to His promises.
3. It is not about what I can do, but it is about surrendering our lives to our Master. God doesn’t need our intelligence, our ability nor our resources. What He needs is a willing heart and our availability.
The Lord wants us to extend His Kingdom through believers – to emphasize its comparable beauty and immeasurable worth. Surrender to His ways, His will and to His agenda. There’s nothing more important than to put the Kingdom of Heaven as our priority; to receive God’s assignment and to hear His prompting as He speaks to us.
Only when God has His way in our lives that His Kingdom will be established on Earth as it is Heaven. Many things take our priorities away from God but we need to recognize this precious pearl and pursue it. When we set God as the priority of our life, this will help us to set the course of life.