Q&A: Thy Will Be Done
This particular question submitted by a reader was in response to two posts:
First, the post dealing with John MacArthur’s claim of the existence of “an interim kingdom” and brazen denial that Jesus Christ currently exercises His full, Divine will over the earth. See Daniel 4:35 for God’s refutation of such thinking.
Secondly, the post dealing with Jesus Christ as our High Priest and King which is the actual post from which the question is derived. It is yet another example of the confusion among God’s people that dispensational teaching hath wrought within the Church body.
Q: If Christ’s complete will is currently being realized on the earth then why are we commanded to pray for His kingdom to come and His will to be done on earth as it is in heaven?
Ans: The Lord’s prayer is just that, a prayer for something we should desire. “Pray then like this” we are told.
Regeneration, that act of grace and transforming power of God the Holy Spirit must occur in an individual before they move from the heart desire of my kingdom…my will”, to the regenerated desire of Thy kingdom and Thy will.
We know that, after regeneration, we are in the kingdom, it is here already (Luke 17:21). For the unsaved, the kingdom is yet absent from their hearts. This prayer is the desire that the Spirit would use us, the regenerate, for kingdom purposes according to God’s will. God works in us and by us to manifest His will on earth in regards to the yet unregenerate elect unto salvation being brought into the kingdom here prayed for. It is a prayer for the establishment of the kingship of Jesus Christ in the hearts of others yet to be saved. In other words, God’s will, for this purpose, is accomplished not only in us by His work in making us holy, but also through and by us in order to accomplish His will.
The will we are praying to be done “on earth as it is in heaven” is the revealed will of God. In heaven, it is done immediately, completely and joyfully in obedience. The divine will of God, of Jesus Christ, is always being done in heaven and on earth. What God decrees happens, what He plans occurs, He is in every sense, exercising His full divine will and sovereignty in and over creation and men at all times – but that is not the object of this portion of the Lord’s prayer. The purpose and object of this portion of the Lord’s prayer is our prayer and desire that those whom God has given to the Son might be brought into the kingdom by His grace and the Spirit’s power of regeneration through and by us in our evangelistic efforts. It is our hearts desire and prayer that God’s will be done in us, by us, through us.
All the inhabitants of the earth are accounted as nothing, but He does according to His will in the host of heaven and among the inhabitants of earth; And no one can ward off His hand or say to Him, ‘What have You done?’ – Daniel 4:35 (NASB)