Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would’ve been fighting that I might not be delivered over to the Jews, but my kingdom is not from the world.”
– John 18:36
There’s a lot we could discuss here as Jesus is facing Pilate and about to head to the cross, and this interaction with him, even what he says later, he says, “For this purpose, I was born, and for this purpose, I’ve come into the world to bear witness to the truth, and everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice.”
John 18:36 Teaches Us We Are Not to Live for This World
Oh, there’s so much we could talk about there, but the reason why I want us to pray specifically according to John 18:36 is because of the simple reminder it gives you and me today that we’re not living for kingdoms in this world.
We’re not living for countries in this world. We’re living for a kingdom that’s not from the world and a country that is to come, and that changes the way we live in whatever country we are in, and it changes the purpose for which we live here.
Our eyes are fixed on another kingdom, a kingdom to come. This is how Jesus taught us to pray. Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come. This is what we’re wanting. That’s the first thing we pray. After the hollowing of God’s name in all the earth for His kingdom to come, and it’s why we pray and most every one of these podcast episodes for unreached people groups in the world because of Jesus’ words in Matthew 24 about his kingdom, how the gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.
We want to see his kingdom come, which means we want to see people from every nation and tribe, and tongue bowing down to Jesus as king and experiencing the love and beauty, and glory of Jesus as king. This is what we live for, not anything else in this world. We live for a kingdom that’s not of this world for a kingdom that’s to come, and it changes the way we live and love.
John 18:36 Reminds Us the Greatest Good We Can Bring to This World Is the Gospel
That’s why Jesus says, “If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would’ve been fighting that I might not be delivered over to the Jews.” But that’s not what we’re living for. No, we love God with all our heart, our king, with all our soul, mind, and strength, and we love others as ourselves. One lays down their lives and loves the church as we prayed according to John 17, and for the lost also as we prayed according to John 17, that the world might know who Jesus is.
We live with love for our neighbors as ourselves. And we love them, lay down our lives for their good. We lay down our lives for the spread of the gospel to all the nations of the world. May his kingdom might come. So God, transform the way we live today around anticipation and longing for the coming of your kingdom. We pray today, our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name because your name to be glorified in us today. Because your name should be glorified in the world today among the nations. May your kingdom come, your will be done in our lives as it is in heaven. God help us to live according to the principles of your kingdom, and submission to you as our king today.
May it be clear that we’re not living for this world today. We’re living for another world in the Hebrews 11 kind of way. Our eyes are fixed on another kingdom, on aanother country. Help us to hold loosely to the things of this world and to hold tightly to you as our king. And God, we pray that you would use our lives. Especially today with all the opportunities we have to proclaim the gospel, help us to fully steward those opportunities.
Praying for the Pashi People
God among the Pashi people, this small minority people group in East Asia, that’s unreached by the gospel. We pray today that the gospel of the kingdom would spread to the Pashi people. That they would come to know you as king. God, we pray this for every people group in the world. And helps us to live for this. Help us to live for the gospel of the kingdom. And Help us to spread it to all the nations of the earth. Help us live for a kingdom not of this world, in all we do: work, school, homes, communities, and cities, today. In Jesus’ name, we pray according to his words in John 18:36. Amen.