Kingdom Focused

Worship Thoughts for Sunday 7.28
The worship songs we sing, the scripture we read, the baptism we enjoy and celebrate, and bread and cup we partake together, presuppose the biblical idea of kingdom: God’s Kingdom. In God’s kingdom there is one King: the Lord our God. But, when we sing, read the Bible, and enjoy the elements, it is easy to think these are about OUR kingdom.

For example, the time of quiet confession during the Lord’s Supper may be used to express deep sorrow to show God how sorry we are for our sins, hoping to earn favor. Our baptism may be a way to convince our family and friends, even ourselves, that we are doing the right thing and that God must be pleased. Lastly, we may mistakenly interpret the truths in Scripture and in worship songs as truths about the advancement of our own kingdom. Let me explain from our upcoming worship set.

Your Grace is Enough – The main line from this song is the title, “Your grace is enough.” Enough for what, or better, whom? Me. God’s grace is enough for me. Seems kind of self-centered. But, it is God-centered with the proper Kingdom mindset. In God’s kingdom, He has chosen a people, adopted children, and made promise of salvation. Although His justice is true, His faithfulness to His promise is true. By His grace we are saved (Eph. 2:5). This song is about the massive redeeming work of a lost and helpless people according to God’s great mercy, and His faithfulness to His covenant.

Lord I Need You – Like above, the main line in this song is the title line, “Lord I need You, Oh I need You.” I find it deeply consoling to be able to sing to God “who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think” (Eph. 3:20), that I need Him. But if we simply assume that this plea is for the hard times of life, then we are missing a blessing larger than life. The verses speak of the utter reality that we can bring no moral value before God. Furthermore, it is God’s grace that supplements our sin: “Where sin runs deep, your grace is more.” We need Him, for He is our one defense and our very righteousness.

This shift in perspective is where freedom is found. Rather than God’s grace being enough to strengthen us in our own kingdom, His grace is enough to save us from pursuing our own kingdom. Rather than calling out our need for God to repair the way we envisioned our kingdom, we call out to God when we see our kingdom has no other destiny than helplessness.