1.) We are citizens of two kingdoms — our country and the kingdom of heaven.
2.) When the two kingdoms conflict, our allegiance to Christ’s kingdom comes first.
3.) We teach our children that conflict will come, but that Jesus will help them be overcomers in the midst of it.
4.) God expects us to take our place as patriotic citizens of our nation. In doing so, we are His ambassadors, for Christ’s glory.
5.) As patriots, we do our part to uphold and preserve the freedoms which are ours under our Constitution. We do this not only for ourselves, but so that all people can live with dignity and fulfill their God-given purpose.
6.) We should be gracious in our speech toward our governmental leaders, even if they are not doing their jobs well.
Colossians 4:5, 6 says, “Walk in wisdom toward those who are without [outside the family of God], redeeming the time. Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer every man.” One of the best ways to live as good citizens of both the heavenly and earthly kingdoms is to redeem our time well through investing it in prayer for our nation, its people, and its leaders.
Our natural tendency is to spend our time griping about the state of the nation and the failings of its leaders. However, complaining accomplishes little, and it even displeases the Lord. On the other hand, prayer according to God’s will releases change into people and circumstances. If we will ask Him to, the Holy Spirit will show us how to rightly pray. Our prayers will be saturated with His grace and love, especially as we persevere in them.
A spiritual consequence of prayer is that we grow in love for the people we pray for. So, as we set ourselves to intercede for our leaders, our hearts will soften toward them, and our speech about them will take on a much more gracious tone.
Take time often to pray together as a family for our nation. Your combined prayers will produce results, and doing it together is also the most effective way to teach your children how to go about it.
Here are a few key Scriptures to use as prayer springboards:
1 Timothy 2:1-4 — I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men: for kings and for all who are in authority, so that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, Who desires for all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.
2 Chronicles 7:14 — If My people, who are called by My name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
Proverbs 14:34 — Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.
And here are some topics to get you started:
- Pray for revival and a third Great Awakening to come to our nation.
- Pray for people’s hearts to be softened so that they will desire Jesus as their Lord.
- Pray for the Holy Spirit to bring fresh love for Jesus into the Church.
- Ask God’s forgiveness for personal sins and for the sins of the nation.
- Ask for the salvation of government leaders. Pray for them to be enlightened in the ways of the Lord.
- Ask for wisdom for government leaders, so that they will make right decisions for the nation.
- Pray for the exposure of evil in government and that righteous justice would be enacted.
- Pray that God would raise up righteous leaders to replace corrupt ones (without naming names).
- Pray that God’s mercy would rest upon the nation.
- Pray protection from harm for the nation, and that innocent people would be kept safe. (Use Abraham’s prayer for Sodom, in Genesis 18:17-33, as a model.)
This concludes the Citizens of Two Kingdoms series.
If you need additional help in instructing your children in how to live as Christian patriots, my book, Character Building for Families, Volume 1, provides five outlined lessons on this subject in the Loyalty unit.