Revelation 11:15 The seventh angel sounded his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, which said:
“The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ,
and he will reign for ever and ever.”
This is one of many passages that are easy to remember because of Handel’s masterpiece, The Messiah. That work makes it easy to believe that heaven is filled with music! That said, we need to understand the meaning of this verse. It is quite literally the fulfillment of what Jesus told us to pray: “Thy kingdom come.” The English is better than the Japanese at this point, because the Japanese just says “country.” In Western cultures too, countries were defined by their rulers, but it’s good that the distinction is clear here; this isn’t talking about a geographic area, but about Lordship. This distinction should be very clear to us right now, as Russia is in the process of invading Ukraine, because Vladimir Putin wants to extend his kingdom. He is in effect as much of a dictator as ancient kings were, and he is wanting to expand his rule and reign. This verse, and indeed the whole Bible, makes it very clear that anything he might accomplish will be strictly temporary. We need to remember that as we pray the Lord’s Prayer that we are praying for God’s authority to be established in the earth, resulting in His will, and His alone, being done everywhere. That fact, properly understood, would make a lot of people not really want to pray the Lord’s Prayer, because they want their will to be done! The thing is, even salvation is all about Lordship. It is hardly trivial that Paul stated clearly, “If you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” (Romans 10:9) He didn’t say, “live in total obedience to Jesus,” because that would be absolute legalism, and that would be a violation of salvation by grace through faith. (Ephesians 2:8-9) However, the acknowledgement, the commitment, must be there, even though our follow-through is imperfect on this earth. Coming back to this verse, it is significant that it isn’t at the very end of the book. Lots of stuff happens after this, but it’s all totally decided from this moment. We need to remember that God is outside of time, so from His perspective this has already happened. We experience lots of negative stuff, but it’s all totally temporary, so we need to rest, relax, and rejoice in our Lord, whatever is going on.
This is certainly timely in view of world events. It’s not often that I’m as caught up in intercession as I am in relation to Ukraine right now. It’s actually a blessing to me to spend such a high proportion of my waking hours in conscious prayer. It has made me aware how comparatively little I have prayed up until now, even though prayer comes easily and naturally to me. I need to be both personally committed to the Lordship of Jesus Christ and actively seeking that Lordship to be extended throughout the earth. I certainly look forward to the day the whole power structure of the earth is transformed into that of Jesus Christ my Lord! However, I must remember that starts with me, in every detail of my life.
Father, thank You for this powerful reminder. Thank You for Handel and others who have transmitted Your truth effectively down through the centuries. Help me also both transmit and live by Your truth, so that You may be pleased with and glorified by me. Thank You. Praise God!