Good morning sir Church. So good to be with you all this morning. Want to start by asking a question, Z one here have any idea what it’s like to live in an earthly kingdom under the rule of an earthly king, anybody have any clue what that’s like. You grew up, you were a citizen of an earthly kingdom and you had an actual earthly king that you had to be subject to anybody. And the first service we had at least one person, You can always count on some of my international friends to bear witness to what I’m about to say today. But um, none in this service. No one isn’t it ironic that the Kingdom of God, probably the most dominant theme in all of the bible. It’s something we have very little context for. Do you find that ironic? The Kingdom of God throughout the scriptures, the Kingdom of God, a dominant theme And we are people, we have no context for what it means to live in a kingdom and be under a king from an earthly perspective. We have in many ways redefined what a kingdom is and what a king does. We’ve done it in cute little subtle ways, but we have for instance, we live in big red Kingdom husker kingdom. Right? And if you tuned in last night to some NFL football, you saw the Chiefs Kingdom secure their spot, you know, into the playoffs with the first round Bye. We think of kingdom as being a collection of followers or fans who are rowdy about the team or the individual or the thing that they support that they are excited about. That’s how we tend to define a kingdom. And then we redefined what it means to be a king. We think of the entertainment industry, there are various types of kings of various different aspects of entertainment. You think of little kids playing a game, What’s the title given to the person who’s the best the king we crown, that person, the king. So we’ve made a king, the person or the thing that we think is the best a kingdom is a collection of rowdy supporters and a king that which we think is the best. We have no context for the Kingdom of God. And yet it’s the most dominant theme in all of scripture. We need kingdom perspective and that’s my goal for this morning, is to give you some kingdom perspective from the bible, that’s also the title of the sermon, kingdom perspective. And you need kingdom perspective because if you believe in jesus, he is a king and you’re believing in him has brought you into his kingdom and you need to know how to represent him Well, you need to know how to live as a citizen of his kingdom. You need to know what that entails. You need to understand it. You need kingdom perspective. R. C. Sproul had a great quote about the Kingdom of God, the late dr R C Sproul, he said this, he said when jesus speaks of the kingdom of God, he speaks of a place where God reigns. Absolutely and that and that absolute rule is carried out according to justice, Mercy and righteousness. That’s kingdom perspective as kingdom perspective that we need the absolute rule and reign of King Jesus his mercy, his righteousness is justice. So let me pray for us and let’s look at this passage this morning and let’s look at the kingdom perspective that Jesus provides us. So let me pray Father in heaven. We seek kingdom perspective this morning. We understand that we don’t live under the Dominion of an earthly king and kingdom and we’re so thankful for that. But we seek kingdom perspective because you have made us through jesus christ citizens of your kingdom if we believe in him. So this morning helped me to preach your word with clarity and give us an earnest heart to receive kingdom perspective. I pray this in jesus name amen, come in sometimes. The way of the kingdom seems unimpressive and yet it’s filled with eternal significance. Sometimes the way of the kingdom seems unimpressive, insignificant of little value, not that important and yet to God eternally important, immense value. And that’s what Jesus is trying to get across today in our passage, he begins by telling a parable, let’s look at it again, He said therefore what is the Kingdom of God like and to what shall I compare it. It is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his garden. And it grew and became a tree and the birds of the air made nests in its branches and again he said to what shall I compare the Kingdom of God? It is like 11 that a woman took and hid in three measures of flour until it was all leavened. Now the other gospel accounts, the synoptic gospel accounts of Matthew, mark and luke. They all cover this particular parable Matthew 13 and 17 and Mark four, we see references to the same parable, this illustration of what the Kingdom of God is like being like a mustard seed, a very tiny little seed. Wondered if you were to, you know, not be careful with it, you might drop it, lose it and have to really scrounge around to find it. That’s how small it is. Unless you drop it and you know, a dark surface, but it’s small. And looking at that seed, you don’t anticipate it doing great things, You don’t anticipate it having such a big impact. So he says, the Kingdom of God is like this little seed that from the natural mind, it’s small, what can it do? And yet when you place it in the garden, it becomes the largest tree in the garden. Now pay attention to what he said, he said, the largest tree in the garden. Not the largest tree in the forest, but a garden. Imagine your own personal garden and imagine a 10 or 12 ft tree in your garden. And that 10 or 12 ft tree originated from a tiny little seed. That’s impressive. That’s amazing. And that’s what his hearers needed to hear because they were like that tiny little seed. They are a small crop of people in a vast and powerful roman empire and they are beginning in a tiny, insignificant little country, Israel or galilee and in a city like Jerusalem, which is where he’s headed. They are small, they are powerless, they are no match for Rome and its legions, they don’t even have the ability to really to confront naturally the power and the influence of the Pharisees. They are small compared to the power that the Pharisees are wielding, he says. But the Kingdom of God might seem unimpressive, might seem insignificant, but over time it will become the largest tree in the garden. Less than 1% of the Roman Empire. For most of the 1st 200 years of Christianity, less than 1% of the Roman Empire was Christian, Less than 1%,, Far, less than 1% to be exact, far less than 1%. And today, which kingdom is still feeling nearer the Kingdom of God, but it began in a very unimpressive and seemingly in a significant way. He also said that it was like a woman who took 11 And hit it three measures of flour. Now 11 typically is used in a negative way when jesus is making illustrations about the harder character, what it’s like to live for God. He normally speaks of Levin in a negative way. And he speaks of the Pharisees of being, You know, on guard, on watch against 11 of the Pharisees. The hypocrisy of the Pharisees, the greed of the Pharisees. But here in this particular illustration, he says that, think of what levin does to the flower, think of what the yeast does to the dough. Now, I’m gonna be honest with you, I’ve never in my life baked one piece of bread. The closest I’ve come to baking bread is putting toast in the toaster. And some of you said that don’t even count and you’re right. It don’t. But I am aware of what happens when you put that yeast on the dough, especially if you put too much yeast on that doe it rises, it can get out of control. It’s crazy that in this illustration, jesus is helping these men to see what the kingdom is like by using something that they were quite accustomed to seeing and witnessing. He said, imagine a woman taking 11, hiding it in three measures of flour. It would feed over 100 men. Something so small would allow that bread to be able to feed 100 men. He’s saying don’t despise the beginnings of the Kingdom of God. Don’t despise the beginnings of the work of God in your life. Don’t despise what seems small and little in terms of progress in your life as you pursue God give it time if you’re on the right track. If you’re pursuing jesus, if you’re all in for the Kingdom of God, the kingdom will begin to reveal itself in a mighty way in your life. The elements of the kingdom will begin to be observable in your life. Very real ways. So he says it may seem small, it may seem unimpressive, but it’s packed with potential packed with power packed with kingdom growth, explosive growth. Remember? Mm hmm. Back in the day playing sports, whenever you you had a guy on the team, you know, playing football is a very physical game. And some of you guys saw that pretty horrific thing that took place on thursday night with the football player. But you know football is a very physical game and sometimes you know, not not everybody that plays is massive or big. And I remember when I first started believe it or not, I wasn’t this big, I was pretty small, it was really small. One of the smallest guys on my team for most of my athletic career until I got to high school. But I remember someone trying to encourage me, guy said to me, he was he was an upperclassman. He says, look man. TNT can come in small packages like yeah, that’s what I want to be. Sometimes God will call us to do something, Sometimes he will give us kingdom responsibility or he’ll put something before us, that involves our walk with him? And it may seem small, it may seem insignificant man, but don’t underestimate its value to God. So important that we be faithful, so important that we trust God to accomplish what he intends to accomplish and then through us, so jesus preparing his apostles, gives an illustration of a mustard seed and leaven to give them kingdom perspective. And then as he’s traveling on, it says in verse 22 he’s journeying towards Jerusalem, but on the way he’s stopping in these small towns, these small villages and he’s teaching now this entire portion of luke. If you were to go back to chapter nine, this is where it began, I believe we began, we taught on chapter nine maybe what, two years ago and then If you were to jump ahead all the way to chapter 19, that entire portion is called the traveling section where Jesus is moving towards Jerusalem and on the way Luke is telling all these things that are taking place and small insignificant villages and towns. Now we will get to chapter 19 probably in two years, but I just wanted you to know that we are gonna be looking at this travel section for a significant portion of time as we walk through the gospel of luke. But here in this particular setting, someone asked a question, he said, Lord will those who are saved be few. Now, why do we do this? Why do we feel the need to know the things that only God can know why we do that. Why do we feel like we’ve got to ask this question, you know, I know this is something that God knows and God knows it because he knows all things and he’s God. Right? So why do we then have to ask this question that only God can know and that only God knows as if somehow we deserve to know that somehow we are, you know God and I were buddies. So God tell me, you know, you know this, so let me know, Will there only be a few people saved? Look man, you won’t even live long enough to to be able to see all the people that God is saving in your lifetime. Why would you ask that question? Do you realize that you might be around an environment where there aren’t very many believers and you’re thinking the same way like man, there’s probably not that many people that are going to be saved. You won’t even be able to see all of the people of God is saving during your lifetime. That’s just a fact, jesus he obliges the man, but not without first doing what I like to describe as jesus, Jedi mind trick. So he said to the man strive to enter through the narrow door for many. I tell you will seek to enter and will not be able when, once the master of the house has risen and shut the door and you begin to stand outside and to knock at the door saying, Lord open to us. Then he will answer you. I do not know where you come from. Then you will begin to say we ate and drank in your presence and you taught in our streets, but he will say, I tell you, I do not know where you come from, depart from me, all you workers of evil. And in that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the Kingdom of God. But you yourselves cast out. The man asked question. Lord, will those who are saved, The few jesus answers with strive to enter through the narrow door. I want to know how many people are gonna get saved. Lord think about your own salvation. Think about your own relationship with God. Are you entering through the narrow door? You’re worried about what God is doing over here and there and there and that person, and will that person be saved? Can God save a person like that? He says, You strive to enter through the narrow door. He begins to answer the man’s question by directing it back to him. You strive to enter through the narrow door, he said, don’t think that because you heard jesus preach a sermon or saw jesus do a miracle or ate some of the food that jesus miraculously provided that somehow you’ll be able on the last day say to the father, I deserve to be there because I saw him do these things. He says that kind of presumption lead you to hell. Let me translate it for us. Well, I went to church, I gave some money to the church, I gave some money to the poor, I like christian music, I like being around christian people. I want my kids to grow up in a christian environment so therefore I deserve to be in the kingdom of God. And what is the response from the master of the house? I never knew you, I never knew you. You know why I never knew you because he wasn’t in you, there was no christ in you, so therefore he doesn’t know you. So it’s not just about playing in a christian environment or doing christian things, it’s about christ being in you. That’s the purpose. That’s the point of a relationship with God of knowing God christ in you. And so he says strive to enter through the narrow door. And that word stride means to agonize give effort from your insides deep down inside. If you believe that you’re believing cause you to pursue God with all you’ve got to the best of your ability. He doesn’t say that you’re saved by your striving. He’s saying that your belief leads to you striving after God. He says forgive, I’m going to forgive, it’s hard, but I’m going to do it. He says come and worship me on the sabbath and he says, I’m gonna get there, I’m gonna do it because I believe in him. He says, live Holy, he says, this is hard, but I want to do it and I’m gonna do it, I’m gonna try to do it and I pray God help me to do it. I’m striving. It’s a life of repentance and faith. It’s humility before God. We strive out there. A lot of other things in life. We do, we strive, we strive to be accepted by people, we might say, man, you know, I really don’t care what other people think. And then a few minutes later we worked really, really hard to make that statement look like we don’t care what other people think about us and then judge how other people evaluated our craftiness and cleverness and stating it, therefore proving that we do care about what other people think about us. Ergo we are striving. So we strive we take great efforts for so many different things whether it’s to get people to like us, whether it’s to have a certain level of success that we think we deserve. We strive, we strive, we strive sometimes it’s it’s good to strive for good things in life, but the most important thing, the thing that matters the most to walk with God if you know that you trip up over various things here and there striving is that you go through great efforts to make it difficult for you to trip up in that area if you know that sometimes you have a hard time controlling your tongue striving as you’re practicing when no one is around what you need to say, how you need to respond to things you need to focus on, You are striving honor God and don’t forget the most important part of that striving to enter the narrow door on your knees in prayer, pray praying, admitting your weakness, admitting your need for God, admitting you need his grace and his help to strive to enter through the narrow door, don’t allow yourself to become complacent and presumptuous thinking that because you’re around christian environment because you do some christian things, things that you should do, but somehow that faster confidence, it’s all christ was nothing for jesus eventually answers the man’s question verse 29 he said, people will come from east and west and from north and south and they will recline at the kingdom of God and behold some our last will be first and some are first will be last, essentially he’s saying though it looks insignificant now though it looks like not many are responding to the message now though, it looks like not many are sold out to christ now oh yeah, it’s gonna happen the gospel is the power of God unto salvation, people will respond, disciples will be made, the kingdom will advance, it will grow like a mustard seed like Levin, it will And though it’s less than 1% at this particular time, far less than 1% the entire Roman empire. It grew and it’s larger than that empire today and it’s still growing and that’s important for us because we look at our circumstances today, we look at this environment today and we think that somehow this is the darkest era ever in history, Less than 1% of the whole world is Christian at this time and in Rome they allow people to be murdered in the colosseum for fun, they called it entertainment, that’s a pretty dark time and yet the kingdom still advanced and so he says those who will be last will be first and some who are first will be last and what he’s saying there is this, there’s some in this life right now who are christian, their brothers and sisters in christ but they have received their reward, they’ve received their reward in this life, they’ve received the applause of man, they’ve received a crown from man and they shall be last and then there are those who seem insignificant, unimportant overlooked, they will be first, I like to say it like this, you know sometimes it’s easy, especially when I first began pastoring to think that the pastor with the biggest church is going to receive the biggest crown and the most honor. On that day, jesus saying to him, look at you, you did all this in my name and then later realizing it’s probably going to be a guy pastoring a small church in a remote place in the world that no one has never heard of, that God gives the biggest crown to. That’s humbling. That’s a heart check. What do I do, what I do? Why do you do what you do? Is it for eternal significance or is it for an earthly crown sometimes the way the kingdom seems unimpressive. Yeah, it’s got eternal significance. Moving on as he encounter some Pharisees and they said to him, get away from here for Herod wants to kill you. Now that’s an interesting statement, we know that the Pharisees feel threatened by jesus, we know that the Pharisees don’t really like jesus so they could be making this up. People are wanting to hear the teacher, jesus, but nonetheless jesus, he responds to their statement, he says behold, well, first of all, he says, go and tell that fox, go and tell that fox, he doesn’t even call him a wolf. Now we know from a christian perspective a wolf is pretty bad, the scary, dangerous animal, right? And it’s pretty bad, no wolves in the church, we don’t want wolves in the church, he doesn’t even give him that decency calls him a fox a critter, not to be trusted, vile, shady critter. Some theologians believe he referred to him as a female fox being promiscuous. Either way, he ain’t got good things to say about harry, but jesus does something and if you read your new testament, this is something. Look, look, I’m gonna say something that you probably aren’t aware of, but you need to hear it. It’s important we’re talking about here in this particular passage, the kingdom coming under persecution. Here’s what you need to understand. Here’s what you need to realize, jesus does not over spiritual eyes. His enemies, he does not say, You go and tell shame. You go and tell fear. You go and tell condemnation that I’m going to do my work in three days. He says, you go and tell that fox Herod. There are real enemies to the kingdom and what we like to do because that makes us uncomfortable is over spiritual ISAT. There are spiritual enemies. He says, I’m going to cast out demons and perform cures today tomorrow on the third day, there are spiritual enemies and there are real earthly enemies to the kingdom. Don’t over spiritualized shame, fear condemnation. Those are feelings. Those are emotions that’s something you feel because something has been done to you or something has been made you to think a certain way, but there is an actual enemy. Either it is the devil or there’s an enemy of the gospel or there’s someone who’s just sinning against you. They may be a brother and they need to repent either way. Don’t over spiritual eyes, it, no, what we understand as christians and this is the part where we have to mature in our thinking was that though there are reel earthly enemies. Our prayer is for those enemies. That’s why Jesus says pray for your enemies. But if you over spiritualized, what are you gonna pray for shame? God, I pray for shame that you forgive shame, I pray to, you forgive my fear. That’s how you pray for your enemies. Those are the enemies God told you to pray for. No, there are real enemies to the Gospel. And so you pray for them and when you pray for them, you ask God God save them or stay their hands so that they don’t bring further harm to your people and to your gospel work, God save them or stay their hand so they so that they don’t bring further harm your people, your ministry work. But if you over spiritual eyes that you can’t pray, those kind of prayers because you aren’t gonna pray a blessing for feelings of shame and guilt and condemnation are you, That makes sense. Our Christianity is rational, it makes sense. Jesus does not over spiritual eyes. It he knows who his enemies are, Some of them are Pharisees and some of those Pharisees will be safe, they were converted. He says today and tomorrow on the third day, I will finish my course, speaking possibly of his resurrection, but we definitely know it speaks to the fact that he will complete the mission? Re being a number of completion, I will complete, it will be done. But then he understands where he’s headed and what will happen to him. He understands his faith. He says, oh Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones, those who are sent to it even said that you know, it can’t be that a prophet should perish outside of Jerusalem. He’s saying he understands he’s going to dangerous and yet church here is your king not a coward, not a man that’s going to back down, not a man that’s overwhelmed with the fact that death, imminent death is awaiting him. He presses on, he is moving towards Jerusalem and to his mission is complete to he has shed his blood and ransomed your soul. That is your king. That kind of kingdom perspective helps us to endure and hold up under persecution to hold up under suffering. Our king is courageous. Our king is a champion, Our king overcame so shall we, but in the process of Jerusalem, the Mount Zion, the mountain of God, Jerusalem being on the mountain, the place, the center of, of worship and religion for the whole world, it was designed to be, is falling short And in its unbelief, judgment would come in the form of 70 A. D. And jesus said that there will be a moment in time. He quotes psalm 1 18 where many will say blessed is he, who comes in the name of the Lord? In other words, God gave them time to repent, received the gospel, they didn’t and then they came under judgment even after jesus went to the cross, they still had time, they still had time and psalm repented and some didn’t. We don’t live under the rule of an earthly king. We don’t live in an earthly kingdom, but we, if we believe in christ, we’ve given our life to him. We live under the rule and the Dominion of a heavenly king, the eternal kingdom. And we need kingdom perspective, Jesus gives it to us today as we think about walking out of here with this kingdom perspective, I want to revisit this idea of striving to enter through the narrow door. This life committed to repentance and faith and trusting God and and and looking to see God do and accomplish what he intends to accomplish in and through our lives. As I think about that there really are only two options for us. The first option is humility, trusting God and being faithful. Even with the small, seemingly insignificant matters of life, it could be something as small as hey forgive your brother, be something as small as trusting the Lord with your finances, something as small as committing to walk with God’s people so that you can together reflect his kingdom. I don’t know, it could be a lot of things. What what things are you overlooking that seems small but have eternal value to God. The second option is to live a life of pride and self confidence, neglecting the small commands and duties all the while waiting for bigger opportunities to shine. You’re gonna miss the kingdom. If that’s your perspective, you’re gonna miss it, you’re gonna fall short, you’re gonna drift away, You’re not gonna live the way God has called you to live. My hope for us is that we will together stride to enter through the narrow door. A life of humility and repentance and faith before God walking through that door together as we see the kingdom expand and grow in our lives. Amen, man, let me pray for us, jesus, Thank you. You gave your life and we might become kingdom people. God. I pray that we would never ever take that for granted. I pray that as we consider what it means to be an ambassador of your kingdom here and now I pray that the same spirit that raised you from the dead would remind us that you are indeed in us and give us the courage to live with the same courage that you showed in the face of whatever it is that we have to face in life. God, I pray, if there be any in here today who realized that maybe they have been overlooking small things that you would remind them of the truth of the gospel, but today is the day of Salvation. If they will repent and believe, strive to enter in, let their belief, producing them a desire to live differently. I pray this in jesus name and that.