Living The Future Now (What does the future look like?)

Series: Finished Works, Holy Spirit

Sun am 14 April 2019 – Kobus Swart

2 Pet. 1:3-11 (Voice, Mirror & Mess); Isa. 9:6-7; Rom. 4:17; (John 14:16); Eph. 4:30-32; Eccl. 3:11; (Heb. 6:4-6); Rom. 16:20

How do we relate to the future? For how long are we going to postpone things while God has already said, “His divine power has given us everything we need to experience life and to reflect God’s true nature through the knowledge of the One who called us by His glory and virtue. Through these things, we have received God’s great and valuable promises, so we might escape the corruption of worldly desires and share in the divine nature!” (2 Pet. 1:3 Voice). The majority of the Church at large is in a passive state of mind. The religious instructions in various ways over the years have conditioned the Church to passively wait for something, when God has given us enough to participate in His divine nature and to reflect His own life in the world. We were created in the image and likeness of God. Adam and Eve fell and we fell but Christ came to restore us to our original identity. His image and likeness is redeemed in us, the default settings are restored; we are rebooted to fully participate in the life of our design! (Mirror)

What does the future look like? A new heaven and a new earth – what does it mean? What does it mean to go to heaven? It is a concept that is overworked in the Church, to wait to die to go to heaven. You do not have to die to go to heaven. He has given us all things pertaining to life and godliness and He wants us to participate in the future now. One of the aspects of the future is peace (Isa. 9:6-7). From the moment Christ was born there would be no end to the increase of His government and of peace. It is not future. The Prince of Peace arrived 2000 years ago.

What is the kingdom? For the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit (Rom. 14:17). The elections are around the corner. Are we putting our hope in a worldly government or on the government of God? Fix your mind on the government of God. There will be no end to the increase of His government and of peace. We need to see more respect for and relationship with the Holy Spirit, without trying to re-activate old patterns. There is something fresh and new on its way. In fact, it is here; we must open our eyes. Jesus said when He would go away, He would send another helper, the Holy Spirit (John 14:16). Never offend or grieve the Holy Spirit. How do we grieve the Holy Spirit? Normally we think of sexual lusts and perversions, but that is not the only way. Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you (Eph. 4:30-32). It is very important to forgive and not let unforgiveness build up to a place of anger and bitterness. Do not allow it; it will poison you spiritually. How many of you are tested to be kind to someone who does not like you? All the counter powers of love, such as bitterness, wrath and anger grieve the Holy Spirit. It should be our goal not to wait for the future before we change and become peaceful, loving and kind. Live that now by reflecting God’s nature. That is what I mean by living the future now! The kingdom of God is righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit! Let us live in the age to come now. God has put eternity in the heart of everyman; we are not removed from the future (Eccl. 3:11).

Here are some practical character qualities we must embrace. So don’t lose a minute in building on what you’ve been given, complementing your basic faith with good character, spiritual understanding, alert discipline, passionate patience, reverent wonder, warm friendliness, and generous love, each dimension fitting into and developing the others. With these qualities active and growing in your lives, no grass will grow under your feet, no day will pass without its reward as you mature in your experience of our Master Jesus. Without these qualities you can’t see what’s right before you, oblivious that your old sinful life has been wiped off the books (2 Pet. 1:5-9 MSG).

We are busy maturing, that is what sonship means. Jesus is not going to die again for future sins, He died for the sin of mankind; He has taken away the sin of the world. Sin being singular, not plural – He has taken away the root cause of sin. That is why is it so dangerous, having received the knowledge of the finished works, to deliberately sin again (Heb. 6:4-6). So, friends, confirm God’s invitation to you, his choice of you. Don’t put it off; do it now. Do this, and you’ll have your life on a firm footing, the streets paved and the way wide open into the eternal kingdom of our Master and Savior, Jesus Christ (2 Pet. 1:10-11 MSG). God invited the world, so confirm His invitation to you by saying, “Yes Lord, I receive you Lord!” It is more than kneeling at the front on a Sunday night meeting. It has to impact your inner man and become an encounter with God. So confirm God’s invitation and choice of you.

How are we going to see the final trampling of satan? By the cross he was put under judgement, but it is the God of PEACE who will finally crush satan under our feet (Rom. 16:20). This is the kingdom we must proclaim by the demonstration of our lives, that our peace cannot be shaken by this present world.

May the peace of God be with you!