‘But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you’ – Matthew 6:33 NKJV.
This verse has become the anthem of my heart. I have heard it repeatedly but it is more focused in this current season. I had to ask: What does it really mean to seek God’s kingdom first?
One word: Priority.
A priority is something that is important to us, something that we care about. If something is important to us, then we will show that by our deeds.
For me, His commandments, His desires, His unfailing love, His grace have to be at the centre of who I am and desire to be.
In this blog I want to share the deep treasures I discovered about God and His Kingdom priorities.
The word “Seek” carries the idea of concentrating on, to focus on, making the kingdom our highest priority. The word means to “actively pursue” or “to go after.” It means continuously. Every day of our life we ought to seek first the kingdom of God. The idea is to “make the kingdom the centre of our life.”
Another translation says: ‘Your heavenly Father already knows all your needs, and he will give you all you need from day to day if you live for him and make the Kingdom of God your primary concern’ – Matthew 6:32-33 NLT – Tyndale
Because we cannot have a kingdom without a king, our first priority is to seek the King of the kingdom. God has promised in his word, ‘You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart’ – Jeremiah 29:13.
The word “first” literally means “first in a line of many options.” There are all kinds of things we can put first in our life. There are a lot of choices, decisions, and priorities. If we want our priorities to be the right priorities, then we must get the first priority straight and that is living with the King of the kingdom. He is my number one priority, knowing Him, loving Him, serving Him, obeying Him and trusting Him.
The “Kingdom of God” is the spiritual reign and authority of God, an eternal kingdom, an everlasting kingdom. As I seek God’s Kingdom (now) He enables Kingdom life to flow through me at all times and I can live in an atmosphere where God is ever present.
And we are to seek “His righteousness,” that holiness of heart and purity of life which God requires of those who profess to be subjects of His spiritual kingdom and therefore to be sought in prayer. God’s righteousness characterises His kingdom. Not only are we to be seeking God’s control over us, but we are seeking God’s character within us. The kingdom of God is not only to be an inward expression but also outwardly expressed. If God is ruling over us, then His righteousness will be within us. Our character is simply the outward expression of whatever is controlling us inwardly. God is interested in His righteousness in us and what He can do through us.
“But” suggests that there were previous cotext associated with this promise. As our lives revolve around His Kingdom we start to understand that the “all these things” are found in His Kingdom. Now what “things” was the Lord referring to? The context tells us in the previous verses of the passge – finances (v.19), food and drink (v25), and clothing (v.28). The necessities of life, in other words. It’s not a promise of health, wealth, and prosperity, but of basics, enough, and sufficient. ‘For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things’ – Matthew 6:32 NKJV
God is basically saying, “If you take care of my interests, I’ll take care of yours.”
This verse reminds me of the daily importance of focusing on His priorities:
- God must come first
- Seek first His Kingdom
- Develop Godly Righteous Character
Daily I have to come before the Lord, give up and surrender more of my life to Him. When I pray, “It’s all about You, Lord”, He nudges me and shows me what sin and dross must be removed. As I surrender His peace that passes all understanding guarding my heart and mind returns.
For me the pursuit of His kingdom and His righteousness is my priority.