FASTING, PRAYING, STUDYING AND LIVING
FOR THE KINGDOM OF GOD
JANUARY 7, 2021
Through the year 2020, many sources encouraged the Saints to practice the spiritual disciplines of fasting, praying, and studying. Then included was the need to apply these three disciplines to our lives by living them. We can find evidence of the three disciplines throughout the Holy Scriptures, Book of Mormon, and Doctrine and Covenants. We also find in John 14:15, Jesus says, "If ye love me, keep my commandments." So, by living for the Kingdom of God, we apply these disciplines in our daily lives and become a "living church."
Most are familiar with the Sermon on the Mount found in Matthew chapters five and six. The sermon ends with 6:38, "Wherefore seek not the things of this world, but seek ye first to build up the kingdom of God and to establish his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you." The underlined words are only found in the Inspired Version of the Holy Scriptures.
It would seem that by using the words, "to build up and establish," we are being admonished to remember that it takes action/application to build up and establish. To seek is to desire to obtain. Ye is you, so each of us is to seek the kingdom. First means coming before all other things in time and order. To build up is to develop or promote gradually by increments. I doubt anyone ever built a house by starting with the roof. We start where we are, apply the spiritual disciplines to our lives and daily become more fit for the kingdom. The kingdom of God is mainly the spiritual realm over which God reigns. Also a fulfillment, on earth, of God's will. We can call it Zion, maybe the Holy City, or even Celestial Glory if you like. To establish is to institute permanently by enactment, to make firm or stable, or to bring about. Living for the kingdom of God. His righteousness was and is being in right relationship with God.
How then can we establish his righteousness? By doing what Jesus says in John 15:10, "If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments and abide in his love."
Other scriptures you can look up and read include: 2 Nephi 1:34; Alma 17:44, DC 77:1 g; 81:3; 95:4 c and many others. Many of our hymns have words of encouragement also, such as "Work for the night is Coming", "Hark the Voice of Jesus Calling," "O My People, saith the Spirit," "Trust and Obey," "Keep Your Eyes Upon Jesus," and "O Little town of Bethlehem" verse four.
Only God knows what lies ahead of us in 2021, therefore our task is "Seek first to build up the Kingdom of God and to establish his righteousness. May He bless you very richly in your efforts.