2-Life in the Kingdom of God - Government is God's Idea
1. The need for government and order is inherent in the human spirit. It is a manifestation of the fact that man was created to be a governor or ruler over the other parts of creation. In fact, according to this verse why didn't God allow any productive growth to take place on the earth?
Therefore the first command given to man by God was to establish "government" on earth, which would destroy chaos and maintain order.
Reread Genesis 1:26
2. What is called the "fall of mankind" was like Adam and Eve declaring independence from the government of Heaven. It has resulted in social and spiritual chaos which has also manifested itself in the physical creation.
So good or bad government affects not only the people of the land but the land itself.
The Kingdom of God was to be a unique structure. God was to be THE KING over many kings in a partnership. All of us were meant to be kings (or queens) in partnership with the sovereign King of the universe! Man's rejection of the Heavenly government began a long series of alternative and disappointing man-made governments that have resulted in centuries of problems and abuse.
3. God's first attempt at reinstating the Kingdom of God on earth involved using a small nation of slaves as his prototype. He expressed his desire through Moses.
God's intent for the nation of Israel was to be governed by Heaven from Heaven and thus to become the expression of the Kingdom of God on earth. Israel was to have been a theocracy -- the rule of a gracious and loving King who would protect and provide for them. Israel rejected God's plan substituting a king for THE King. This led to calamitous consequences still rippling along today.
4. Any honest person looking at our planet and the mess we have made of things has to conclude that we need an alternative form of government from what the world is offering. That's why the first official words from Jesus were:
Christ's assessment of man's spiritual and social hunger and poverty of soul can only be satisfied by one thing.
The ideal kingdom is so beautiful that only God could have thought of it. And while some of man's governments are better than others, all are inferior to the Kingdom of God.
5. Governments include the concepts of both power and authority -- in balance. Authority is the key to successful government. If it isn't there you can't govern. Power without legitimate authority is dictatorship and results in abuse, oppression and destruction. Earthly governments derive their authority from the people through a vote or by violence.
In a kingdom, authority is inherent and a product of the right of ownership. God's authority as King is inherent because of who He is and the fact that He created everything. God can therefore give authority to whoever He chooses. Who did He give it to?
I grew up in America learning that democracy was the best form of government. It is the rule of the people, by the people and for the people. It grew out of reaction to other bad forms of government. In fact, America was built on rebellion against the Kingdom of Great Britain. The fear of totalitarianism and dictatorship is the engine that drives the motor of western democracy. America's guiding principles are independence, self-determination and individuality. All three of these principles are contrary to Kingdom of God principles. A further defect in a democracy is the principle of "majority rule". This places morality, values and the standards for law at the mercy of a majority vote --- whether they be right or wrong. And that's what humanism is -- man becoming his own measure for morality. Democracy without God is man's worship and elevation of himself. And therefore the vote of the majority can be the wrong way.
Most western people in their limited understanding of a kingdom see it as a dictatorship in the hands of a family. If this is true then the message of Jesus over 2,000 years ago was that He came to establish a dictatorship with himself as the dictator. For He called Himself a King and He came to bring back to earth a "kingdom"!
John 1:49 / John 18:37
And all this was predicted centuries before it happened!
If God be God, then it behooves us to recognize and study the kingdom that we lost through sin. It is this original kingdom, established by THE KING that we have been searching for all along and don't even know it. The Bible in its story is about a king, a kingdom and a royal family of children. It's about the desire of the king to extend his Heavenly territory to earth through his royal family.