The Kingdom of God (continued)
The Church To Administer And Manifest The Kingdom
But then the matter does not end there. Israel was a chosen nation, not to be an end in themselves, but to display to all the nations what the kingdom of God is, and to administer that kingdom in the midst of the nations. There were times when other nations got the benefits of Israel. When they were not against Israel, when they were amendable or favorable, great blessings came to them because of Israel, and so it has been since then. I am not at all sure that we have not derived a great deal of blessing in this country because of the attitude in past years toward that nation - even in their rejection. "I will bless them that bless thee, and him that curseth thee will I curse" (Genesis 12:3); and that holds good. But in a very direct way, when Israel was according to God's mind, in line with Him, people were blessed because of them. And the Church is not an end in itself. We find in "Revelation" the end - the city is in its place of administration, and it is the nations that are deriving the benefit. The light of the nations, the leaves for the health of the nations, the water for the life of the nations, issue from that city. The Church, then, is to be so constituted as to be God's instrument of administration and manifestation of His kingdom.
The Practical Issue - Ascendancy Over the Kingdom of Darkness)
But while we are set in that as the ultimate, and all the practical questions and challenges and issues bound up with that have to be brought home to our hearts, the whole matter resolves itself for the time being into one of registering all that is meant by the kingdom of God, the mighty sovereignty of God in Jesus Christ, not now so much upon kings and rulers of this earth as upon those principalities and powers and world rulers of this darkness, those spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenlies. That is where we are brought to, and if I were to gather into one statement what I believe to be the the Divine intention in our present meditations it is this - to seek to bring us, as among that people, to the place where we count infinitely more in the spiritual than we now do, where we have to be reckoned with by the powers of evil back of this world system. It is there that value to God is decided in this dispensation.
(continued with # 29)