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These pages are designed to aid study or investigation for Christian discipleship through individual Bible study, Cell groups, Home groups, or meeting one to one. The questions could be used alone allowing each person to use their own Bible.
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If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. 2 Cor 5:17
Values of kingdom - hallowed
Jesus’ teaching on the the kingdom is scattered throughout the first three gospels. It is not a structured set of teaching but a scattering of profound challenges to the way we see and live life. I have organised them along the structure of the Lord’s prayer which brings together most of the elements.
On this page is a short summary of Jesus teaching for each of the main elements. At that point there is a pointer to a page which will give a more exhaustive view.
Warning to those who have it all
Those who have it all, only have it all for the present. There will come a time of regret, where all is lost.
Luke 6:24-26 "What sorrow awaits you who are rich, for you have your only happiness now. What sorrow awaits you who are fat and prosperous now, for a time of awful hunger awaits you. What sorrow awaits you who laugh now, for your laughing will turn to mourning and sorrow. What sorrow awaits you who are praised by the crowds, for their ancestors also praised false prophets.
The values God blesses
One can see the values that Jesus the King lifts up by the blessings he gives. These blessings are bracketed by the blessing of the Kingdom. This implies that all of the blessings within are expressions of the outer bracketing blessings.
Matthew 5:3-10“God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.
God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted.
God blesses those who are humble, for they will inherit the whole earth.
God blesses those who hunger and thirst for justice, for they will be satisfied.
God blesses those who are merciful, for they will be shown mercy.
God blesses those whose hearts are pure, for they will see God.
God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God.
God blesses those who are persecuted for doing right, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs.
The way a person strives for greatness demonstrates the values they actually live for. In this passage Jesus identifies greatness in the Kingdom.
Matthew 18:1-4 About that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Who is greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven?” 2 Jesus called a little child to him and put the child among them. 3 Then he said, “I tell you the truth, unless you turn from your sins and become like little children, you will never get into the Kingdom of Heaven. 4 So anyone who becomes as humble as this little child is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.
The price of the Kingdom
Jesus gives two angles on the price of the kingdom
Matthew 13: 44 “The Kingdom of Heaven is like a treasure that a man discovered hidden in a field. In his excitement, he hid it again and sold everything he owned to get enough money to buy the field.
45 “Again, the Kingdom of Heaven is like a merchant on the lookout for choice pearls. 46 When he discovered a pearl of great value, he sold everything he owned and bought it!
Your Will be done
Our willingness for the Kingdom is seen not only in the expression of our will, but in our willingness to put those intentions into practice. We see in this text three examples.
Luke 9:57-62 As they were walking along, someone said to Jesus, “I will follow you wherever you go.” 58 But Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens to live in, and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place even to lay his head.”
59 He said to another person, “Come, follow me.” The man agreed, but he said, “Lord, first let me return home and bury my father.” 60 But Jesus told him, “Let the spiritually dead bury their own dead! Your duty is to go and preach about the Kingdom of God.”
61 Another said, “Yes, Lord, I will follow you, but first let me say good-bye to my family.” 62 But Jesus told him, “Anyone who puts a hand to the plow and then looks back is not fit for the Kingdom of God.”
Value seen in what is rewarded
A helpful way to see what is important to Jesus the king is to look at what he will reward and what will be punished at the culmination of all things.
Luke 19: 11-27 The crowd was listening to everything Jesus said. And because he was nearing Jerusalem, he told them a story to correct the impression that the Kingdom of God would begin right away.12 He said, "A nobleman was called away to a distant empire to be crowned king and then return.13 Before he left, he called together ten of his servants and divided among them ten pounds of silver,* saying, 'Invest this for me while I am gone.'14 But his people hated him and sent a delegation after him to say, 'We do not want him to be our king.'
15 "After he was crowned king, he returned and called in the servants to whom he had given the money. He wanted to find out what their profits were.16 The first servant reported, 'Master, I invested your money and made ten times the original amount!'
17 "'Well done!' the king exclaimed. 'You are a good servant. You have been faithful with the little I entrusted to you, so you will be governor of ten cities as your reward.'
18 "The next servant reported, 'Master, I invested your money and made five times the original amount.'
19 "'Well done!' the king said. 'You will be governor over five cities.'
20 "But the third servant brought back only the original amount of money and said, 'Master, I hid your money and kept it safe.21 I was afraid because you are a hard man to deal with, taking what isn't yours and harvesting crops you didn't plant.'
22 "'You wicked servant!' the king roared. 'Your own words condemn you. If you knew that I'm a hard man who takes what isn't mine and harvests crops I didn't plant,23 why didn't you deposit my money in the bank? At least I could have gotten some interest on it.'
24 "Then, turning to the others standing nearby, the king ordered, 'Take the money from this servant, and give it to the one who has ten pounds.'
25 "'But, master,' they said, 'he already has ten pounds!'
26 "'Yes,' the king replied, 'and to those who use well what they are given, even more will be given. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away.27 And as for these enemies of mine who didn't want me to be their king—bring them in and execute them right here in front of me.'"
[Greek 10 Minas, each worth 3 months wages. 10 lb of silver worth ~ $2000, £1500]
Give us this day
We are given here a snap shot into the way Jesus cared about people.
Luke 9:10 When the apostles returned, they told Jesus everything they had done. Then he slipped quietly away with them toward the town of Bethsaida.11 But the crowds found out where he was going, and they followed him. He welcomed them and taught them about the Kingdom of God, and he healed those who were sick.
Jesus’ concern for people was not only seen in ministering to them but also providing opportunities for people to work.
Matthew 20:1-16 “For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire workers for his vineyard. 2 He agreed to pay them a denarius for the day and sent them into his vineyard.
3 “About nine in the morning he went out and saw others standing in the marketplace doing nothing. 4 He told them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.’ 5 So they went.
“He went out again about noon and about three in the afternoon and did the same thing. 6 About five in the afternoon he went out and found still others standing around. He asked them, ‘Why have you been standing here all day long doing nothing?’
7 “‘Because no one has hired us,’ they answered.
“He said to them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard.’
8 “When evening came, the owner of the vineyard said to his foreman, ‘Call the workers and pay them their wages, beginning with the last ones hired and going on to the first.’
9 “The workers who were hired about five in the afternoon came and each received a denarius. 10 So when those came who were hired first, they expected to receive more. But each one of them also received a denarius. 11 When they received it, they began to grumble against the landowner. 12 ‘These who were hired last worked only one hour,’ they said, ‘and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the work and the heat of the day.’
13 “But he answered one of them, ‘I am not being unfair to you, friend. Didn’t you agree to work for a denarius? 14 Take your pay and go. I want to give the one who was hired last the same as I gave you. 15 Don’t I have the right to do what I want with my own money? Or are you envious because I am generous?’
16 “So the last will be first, and the first will be last.”
Hallowed be your name
Jesus uses John the Baptist to illustrate how greatness is seen from the perspective of the Kingdom of heaven.
Matthew 11: 11 "I tell you the truth, of all who have ever lived, none is greater than John the Baptist. Yet even the least person in the Kingdom of Heaven is greater than he is!12 And from the time John the Baptist began preaching until now, the Kingdom of Heaven has been forcefully advancing,* and violent people are attacking it.13 For before John came, all the prophets and the law of Moses looked forward to this present time.14 And if you are willing to accept what I say, he is Elijah, the one the prophets said would come.*15 Anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand!
Luke 7:28 I tell you, of all who have ever lived, none is greater than John. Yet even the least person in the Kingdom of God is greater than he is!"
As we forgive
Lead us not into temptation
Deliver us from evil