Slideshow image
This post is available as a blog post or as a podcast. You can choose which format you prefer to receive it in!
If you subscribe to the podcast through Google podcasts, it should show up in your feed so you won't need to go find it. Our social media sites will link to our podcast page, which also offers a PDF of the text.
Click here if you would prefer to listen to the podcast audio of this message!

“Lord, teach us to pray.” That was the request of Jesus that led to what we have come to call The Lord’s Prayer. While it was taught by Jesus, there’s no indication it was his prayer. It was the prayer he taught his followers to pray. And today we’re continuing to work through that prayer by considering the second sentence within it. It picks up on what we talked about last week and deals with a huge theme within Jesus’ teaching. That’s what we'll be talking about today - Your Kingdom Come.

As we are doing each week, I invite you to begin by reading a contemporary translation of The Lord’s Prayer. Listen closely and think deeply about what we are praying together.

Our Father who is in heaven, uphold the holiness of your name.
10 Bring in your kingdom so that your will is done on earth as it’s done in heaven.
11 Give us the bread we need for today.
12 Forgive us for the ways we have wronged you, just as we also forgive those who have wronged us.
13 And don’t lead us into temptation, but rescue us from the evil one.

Let us consider that first sentence:
"Bring in your kingdom so that your will is done on earth as it’s done in heaven."

As we discussed last week, heaven is primarily the place where God dwells. And because God dwells there, it is also the place where God’s will is done. It is God’s kingdom.

Here Jesus teaches his followers to pray, “Bring in your kingdom…” This is a request of God to bring the realities of heaven to earth. There are two things I’d like to highlight as we think about this short petition. First, it is God’s kingdom. It isn’t the church’s kingdom or the kingdom of a certain political perspective. It is God’s kingdom - a kingdom that the hymn writer describes as a kingdom of love and light. It is not a matter of having Christians in charge or the church holding sway in public debate. It is about the way of Jesus - who, in his life, announced the arrival of the kingdom - being lived out here on earth just as it is in heaven.

And a second thing I’d like to highlight here is that it is a petition for God to bring his kingdom reality to bear on earth. This isn’t something we can force into our world. It is something for us to receive and to join in living out.

A couple of weeks ago, I noted that in the Old Testament, the Hebrew people were never told by God that they were to violently conquer Canaan. God told them he would give it to them. It seems, though, that the only way they could perceive receiving it is through victorious military aggression. God seemingly tried to turn Joshua away from that, both by declaring through his representative that he wasn’t on the side of either military and by giving initial direction to march around and blow trumpets rather than to use any military strategy. Only when Israel made it clear that military conquest was all they could conceive of did God assist their military - while giving clear instructions that led them to fight and even conquer in a very different manner than the world around them.

When Jesus shows up on the scene, however, he made it very clear that military conquest was not on the divine agenda. That was not how God’s kingdom would come to bear on earth. Instead, Jesus described the kingdom as a small seed that grew into a huge tree and as yeast that permeates the entire loaf. It isn’t forced. It is organic. It develops and impacts all that is around it. How sad it is that many today seem to think that God’s kingdom looks more like a conquering army than the way of Jesus who healed his attacker while telling his defender to put away his sword.

The final thing I’d like to note today is that while we pray, “Bring in your kingdom so that your will is done on earth as it’s done in heaven,” we are acknowledging that heaven is not just something “out there” that we’re waiting for in the future. Certainly, there is hope beyond this life and all the beauty and struggles within it. But our expectation in this world is not that we would just hold on tight until we can get out of it and get to heaven. Our expectation is that God’s kingdom, announced and initiated by Jesus, is coming in the here and now. We are to be the community by which the kingdom of God is brought into being in this life and in this world. We pray, “Bring in your kingdom so that your will is done on earth as it’s done in heaven.” And we live in such a way that we partner with God in seeing this become our reality.


  • In just a couple of weeks we will enjoy our annual meeting. We’ll gather on Sunday, March 5 at 3:30 pm. At that meeting we will officially receive our financial statements from 2022. We’ll approve our budget for 2023 and affirm people for specific roles at the church. Our Annual Meeting booklet with the full agenda and reports will be posted on the event page on our website as soon as that document is available. And bring some food to share for our potluck supper after the meeting is over!
  • Block off the evenings of July 10-13 in your calendar for this summer’s Inspire Maker Space Camp! In the coming weeks, watch for more information about this summer program. We’ll be revisiting the Inspire theme that was so amazing last year so we’ll need lots of help. We’ll need group leaders, station leaders, tech people, registration people, and people praying for the week. Watch for more information about Inspire!
  • Finally, we continue to need some adult tech people, some greeters, and some backup help for our coffee ministry. Please consider helping in one of these areas.

As we close today, I invite you to pray the traditional version of The Lord’s Prayer.

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done;
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass
against us.
And lead us not into temptation;
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
the power and the glory,
for ever and ever.

Leave a comment

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We reserve the right to remove any comments deemed inappropriate.