Peter had reason to be concerned. Here he was, a former business owner, sold out to a man that many considered nothing but an impostor. But there was something about the Galilean that had captivated him from the beginning, and still convinced him of His genuineness. Yet, this whole new enterprise – Christianity, as it came to be called – that he and the other disciples had been introduced to, what was in it for them?
This was the question on Peter’s mind. In need of an answer, he asked the Lord: “Behold, we have forsaken all, and followed thee; what shall we have therefore?” (Matthew 19:27.)
How bold! Nevertheless, the Lord had a ready reply: “Verily I say unto you, That ye who have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name’s sake, shall receive an hundredfold” (Matthew 19:28,29).
This answer that the Lord gave to Peter is one of His most remarkable promises. It is the promise of a “golden future time” for all saints – to use the words of George Orwell – that gives greatest meaning and encouragement to our determination to “keep the faith,” especially in the midst of the challenges and troubles of the present time. The apostle Paul wrote, “If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable” (I Corinthians 15:19). He knew that the present world, despite its many attractions and what we might be able to achieve in it, has little of lasting value to offer the believer. He was therefore awakening us to the truth that our real heritage and reward for faithfulness is in a promised land just across the river – or as the Lord put it, “in the regeneration [a future world order, or kingdom] when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory”! Yes, a kingdom, for as He said elsewhere, “And I appoint unto you a kingdom , as my Father hath appointed unto me; that ye may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel” (Luke 22:29-30).
This coming kingdom over which we will reign with our Lord and reap the full rewards of our present labor and sacrifice will, however, not be limited to the nation of Israel, as might be supposed from how the Lord put the promise in the Gospels. The big picture, delayed for reasons that we will discuss in a future post, is unveiled in a latter version of the promise: “And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations [all nations!]: And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father” (Revelation 2:26,27). It’s going to be a global affair. “Ask of me,” the Almighty declared to the Anointed King of kings, “and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession” (Psalm 2:8).
“Power over the nations,” the Lord said – quite something to promise! When you think about it, you’d realize that that’s what the whole course of the world is about: a quest for POWER! And there are many dimensions to this promised power of the saints, which is part of what we will be discussing as we wake up to this golden promise of the kingdom. Suffice to say here that it takes in every area in which the “powers that be,” the “movers and shakers,” of the present global society operate. That’s why Daniel wrote: “And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, were given to the people of the saints of the most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey him” (Daniel 7:27).
This is something that’s going to be more glorious than we’ve thought! Indeed, when we get a true revelation of this great heritage that we have in Christ, it will completely change our perspective and world view. We will realize that there is nothing too great to do or give up for the Lord. As the apostle wrote, “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him. But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God” (I Corinthians 2:9,10). That’s what I hope to archive through this medium: to take you along on a scriptural exploration that will stimulate a revelation of this “glory which shall be revealed in us” (Romans 8:18). So keep the faith, and remain posted.
God bless you always.
In the King’s Service,
David Olagoke Isaac-Olawoyin.