Let me start by asking who gave this commitment? And who could give us this assurance? And why is it relevant in the twenty First Century into the year 2017 that GOD IN JESUS CHRIST HAVE FAVOURED US AND GIVE US LIFE TO ENTER THE YEAR AS MENTIONED ABOVE? You would have seen that towards the last months of the departed year we as Disciples have endured well by making Jesus Christ the discovery of the Gospel and the King of king soon to come.
Yesterday the final day of 2016; I shared with you to remember and know that Kingdom (life) promised us by Jesus Christ (Rom. 14:16-17) is already with us. We here in the Group “BE A DISCIPLE OF JESUS CHRIST” on Facebook have reason with everyone not to miss this very fact. We have every reason to restate that v.17 is a strong fact or proof that the Church in the Church age is the kingdom of God, because the context here deals with the Church life (remember I have dealt with the practical church life a few days or a week ago in the Group) in the present age.
Astonishingly to many who handle the Church as private business it isn’t? the Church is a matter of grace and life, whereas the kingdom is a matter of exercise and discipline.
Know this also the kingdom of God is the sphere (the place for God) in which God exercises His authority (sadly not you and me including how we faction our messages) so that He may express His glory for the fulfilment of His purpose (not us the soil tillers, sowers, and those who water it, it is done by Jesus Christ using us beside ourselves).
In such a kingdom; what matters is not eating and drinking (or fighting over petty squabbles like tenets and not how you believe or I don’t) but righteousness, peace, and JOY IN THE HOLY SPIRIT. Righteousness denotes that which is right and proper (as Peter and Paul encouraged that everything which is right etc. etc. pursues those). Those who live in the kingdom of God should be right and proper towards others, towards things, and towards God; with them there should not be anything erroneous, improper, crooked, slanted, or biased.
This requires that we the Christians deal strictly with or in dealing with themselves. Peace is the fruit of righteousness (Heb. 12:11). It characterizes the relationship that those who live in the kingdom of God should have with others and with God. If we are righteous, right, and proper towards others, towards things, and towards God, we will have a peaceful relationship with others and with God. Thus, we will have joy in the Holy Spirit (what about if your church does not believe in the existence of the Holy Spirit?) and before God.
In this way, we will have filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit (Acts.13:52) and will live out righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit (these are found in ourselves or our efforts but in the Holy Spirit our Comforter), which are the reality of the kingdom of God. According to the context of this chapter, v.17 was written for our receiving of the believers. If we receive the believers according to the apostle’s instructions in the chapter, we will be right and proper toward those whom we receive and will have peace with them; thus, we will have joy in the Holy Spirit, proving that we are living in the reality of God’s kingdom and are under God’s rule (not under the sole authority of any founder leader of a sect who can the aimless death of his or her followers. We hereby follow the authority of God in Jesus Christ and under His rule alone.
Otherwise, we will not be right or proper toward those whom we do not receive and will not have peace with them, thus, we will not have joy in the Holy Spirit before God, proving that we are not the subject of God’s authority in the kingdom of God.