Proverbs 29:18 (KJV) “Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.”
I truly desire to please God! My “Vision” is to be more like Jesus. The success of my “Vision” depends on two areas – My Priorities & Focus – and these must be developed!
Developing Biblical priorities and perspectives requires…
It is possible to acknowledge and believe in God and yet not live in a manner that expresses total dependence upon Him. To please Him, we must depend upon Him consistently, and unashamedly!
Matthew 6:33 (KJV) “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you” (Emphasis Added).
To “seek ye first the kingdom of God” means to always put God first in every desire, direction, and duty. It means to make every decision based upon what you believe would benefit the Kingdom of God regardless of whether it will benefit yourself or not.
Oftentimes, God will place two or more seeming opportunities before us. This is a trial to search our hearts to reveal what we place as a priority in our life. Do we seek to benefit ourselves, or do we seek to benefit the Kingdom? You see, “seeking the kingdom of God,” without adding the second part, “and his righteousness,” will lend itself to depending upon our own understanding and benefit in making decisions.
“Seeking…his righteousness” means pursuing God’s character – desiring to be just like Him.
God gave us a promise of such…
1 Peter 1:15-16 (KJV) “But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy” (Emphasis Added).
Researching the most authoritative Greek and Hebrew dictionaries and Bible Commentaries reveals that “Be ye holy; for I am holy” is best translated, “Ye shall be holy” as a future imperative. Consider what God declared through Moses…
Exodus 19:5-6 (KJV) “Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine: And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel” (Emphasis Added).
Most of us do not understand the “Kingdom” concept. We Americans place a high premium upon being independent. We claim to be masters of our own fate and applaud our independence from a tyrannical King of England! We prize our right to make our own choices and loyalties.
Then, we have an encounter with Jesus Christ of Nazareth! This encounter reveals there is a Kingdom that the Man, Christ Jesus came to introduce and make known that would rule in the hearts of men. We respond to the Holy Spirit’s convincing of our need of a Savior by acknowledging and accepting Jesus as Savior. HOWEVER, Jesus is NOT just our Savior – He is LORD!
Out spiritual vision is awakened in the New Birth, and we become aware that we do not belong to ourselves. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (KJV) “What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”
Being “born again” places us into a “position” of being “holy,” while we must “learn” the “practice” of being “holy.” This requires us to express and experience dependence upon God to transform us. Thus, as we “seek…his righteousness,” we must humble ourselves and become His servant. Transformation into being a “Citizen of the Kingdom” will not manifest unless we cooperate with the Holy Spirit…
Romans 12:1-2 (KJV) “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God” (Emphasis Added).
Prior to salvation, we lived according to our own understanding and fallen nature. The New Birth presents the spiritual opportunity and ability to replace our “stinking thinking” with “Kingdom Thinking.” The Man, Christ Jesus understood the ways of the world while having the ability to be “Kingdom-minded.” We NEED His direction, so we can successfully navigate through the trials and temptations of this “world.”
“Some travelers, not satisfied with the ordinary packaged tours, have chosen wilderness vacations, safaris, and other exotic tours. For those interested in such adventurous travel, the following advice has been given: Find the best guide available. When you find him, hire him quickly! Trust yourself unreservedly to him. Do exactly what he tells you.” — Robert C. Shannon, 1000 Windows, (Cincinnati, Ohio: Standard Publishing Company, 1997)