Sometimes we just do not know what we should pray to the Father about. “We know not what we should pray for as we ought,” but the Spirit is there to help us (Rom 8: 26). And He helps us to know through the ideas presented in the “Lord’s Prayer.” Christ’s example prayer presents the thoughts of the Almighty Father. We are to understand its precepts and communicate with God accordingly. We are not to use the “Lord’s Prayer” as an exercise in rote regurgitation–no matter how sincerely it is repeated.
“Thy kingdom come” is the next precept Christ is teaching us from His example prayer. What is the Father’s kingdom? Is it just when we on a personal level are “born again”? Is that the extent of the Father’s governance in the earth? Personal salvation is wonderful and is truly the seed beginning of His kingdom in this earth. But that seed grows.
In fact, “the kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed…which indeed is the least of all seeds, but when it is grown, it is the greatest among herbs, and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and lodge in the branches thereof” (Matt 13: 31-32).
The parables reveal the secrets and mysteries of the Father’s kingdom (Matt 13: 11). And the big secret revealed in the mustard seed parable is that the Father’s kingdom grows into a gigantic spiritual and political entity that is so powerful that the other nations (birds of the air) seek shelter in its branches.
This is the same government originating from heaven that Daniel saw in the interpretation of Nebuchadnezzar’s dream. The king had a terrifying dream that showed the fall of all the satanic governments of the world, caused by the coming and full fruition of God’s government, the kingdom of heaven. Daniel told him that “there is a God in heaven that reveals secrets and makes known…what shall be in the latter days” (Dan 2: 28).
The latter days. That’s our time. The world Gentile empires are coming down, brought about by the coming of “the kingdom of heaven” to this earth. We know the dream with the great image of gold, silver, brass, and iron, signifying the four world empires in history. And there came the stone kingdom from heaven that smashed into the feet of the image, and it came crashing down. “And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever” (Dan 2: 44). The Father’s kingdom is not just an invisible feel-good-in-the-Spirit kingdom, but it is literal and political, as well as spiritual. It is a government ruled by a benevolent Monarch. It is coming to earth in the latter days–in our time.
So, “thy kingdom come.” The Father in Christ is coming back to this earth to govern, insuring peace throughout the far flung corners of the globe for a thousand years. And He “shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.” This is the good news. This government, this kingdom brought here by our Father through His Son–this true gospel is the good news of our Father’s government literally coming to fill the whole earth with His righteous ways.
Christ in this section of the “Lord’s Prayer” teaches us the importance of the Father’s kingdom. A kingdom is a literal form of government headed by a monarch. He is the King. Thy kingdom come…in earth as it is in heaven. His kingdom already rules in heaven; shortly it will rule completely on earth.
This is the good news proclaimed in the four gospels in the so-called “New Testament” of the Bible. Many scriptures back this up. “Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, and saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel” (Mark 1:14-15). Believe what gospel? The “gospel of the kingdom of God.” He is saying, God’s government is here. Because it is at hand, you need to repent from your old selfish life, and believe this good news of God ruling on earth.
“And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come” (Matt. 24:14). It is this gospel, this true gospel of the kingdom of God that must be proclaimed throughout the whole world before the end of the age will come. The gospel preached by the vast majority of pastors is “another gospel” about Christ. It is a shallow shadow of the good news. It focuses on “getting saved” and does not mention a peep about the grandeur of His world wide rule. Salvation is precious, but it is just the first step. It is the germination of that mustard seed, but there is so much more after that.
Thy kingdom come. We, then, should pray with this glorious vision that Christ has, when He taught His disciples to pray. His kingdom is a vision of an earth free from corruption and cruelty–free from addiction and selfishness–free from hunger and desperation–free from greedy leaders who cast the poor in chains of lies and deceit–free from husbands and wives betraying those who love them the most–free from broken-hearted children thrown out like trash by selfish parents–free from the evil that pillages every soul on earth–
This is the gospel of the Kingdom of God. This is the good news that will fill the earth when Christ comes back and sits down on the throne of our invisible Father. And His sons and daughters will sit alongside Him in His kingdom right here on earth. And He will dispatch us His princes and princesses out into the ravished earth to rebuild and restore what the evil ones wasted.
“Thy kingdom come” evokes much about the glorious vision God has for His earth. We need to pray toward this end. He told us to not ask for things for ourselves, but rather, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you.” Kenneth Wayne Hancock