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Kingdom Culture Pt. 2
Stats: 5,939 words / Reading Time: 29.70 mins

Published: Thursday, 29th April 2021

By: Lara Gboyega Adedeji

Kingdom Culture Pt. 2 is read 783 times on CentreNDL.org 783
  

KINGDOM CULTURE PT. 2

The Necessary Expression of the Life of the Kingdom


Listen To Podcast: Kingdom Culture: The Necessary Expression of the Life of the Kingdom

In the first part of this piece (Kingdom Culture As Shown By Christ Jesus), I revealed to us how Jesus Christ was able to demonstrate the culture of the kingdom. I pointed to us from the book of Philippians where it was written of Him that He endured the cross and despised the shame simply because He was looking forward to the glory that God had prepared ahead of Him. So, because of this glory, the Bible says in that Philippians that “He made Himself of no reputation, even though He could be equal with God, He did not count it robbery to be equal with Him.” So, from here, we can see that Jesus was showing us how to demonstrate humility in the kingdom.

 

Because there is so much to know about kingdom culture and of course, one piece couldn’t have done enough justice to the subject matter, I will be sharing with us other things that are needed for our edification in this article. So, our focus today is kingdom culture and the necessary expressions of the life of the kingdom. But I want to give us three definitions of culture that will help us in what we are discussing. Culture comes from the Latin word cultural. Now deliberately I was led to this because it actually opened me up to understanding the root and the deep meaning of culture. So, beyond the way of life of a people, culture stems from the word cultural, meaning worship or cult. It refers to human interaction. When human beings interact to a point, they form a culture. 

 

So, you see that for many people in the world, their culture was not a download from heaven, it was a product of their human interaction. So, as human beings started interacting all over the world, remember what happened in Genesis? When they were building the tower of Babel and God scattered their language so that they don’t understand each other and stop the project, people of the same language that could understand themselves, started interacting. So, instead of the world having one culture, we have diversities of culture. Because we have diversities of human interaction in small groups, and in small areas. So, when the Yoruba’s interact, they have a Yoruba culture. When the Igbos interact, they have the Igbo culture, when the Hausas interact, they have the Hausa culture.

 

So, culture actually stems from human interaction. And it talks about something that happens in worship. Now we will see how that is important to us, but we are going to look at another definition of culture, which talks about all learned normative behavior patterns. So, culture is something you learn, something you have learnt by interaction. So, for some of us that were born into the Yoruba culture, we were not born with it, we learnt it. So, we learnt how to make Amala, we learnt how to speak the language, we learnt how to kneel down to greet. Those things are part of our patterns that we learnt. i.e. there are shared ways or patterns of thinking and feelings as well as doing. So, it is a shared way or pattern of thinking. Our thinking in the Yoruba culture is that respect is shown as a lady when you kneel down to greet your elders. Respect is shown as a man if you prostrate to greet an elderly person. So, it has become our culture and we learnt it.

 

Another definition of culture is what we have learnt about our history, values, morals, customs, acts and habits. So, for those of us that are born in this generation, many things that we are doing did not start with us, it started with our ancestors as we might want to call them, or our fore fathers. They started the culture and passed it down from one generation to another to the end that in history we will understand where we are coming from and relate with it. So, culture talks about the history, learning about the history, the values, the morals, customs, act and habit and you have to learn it. So, there are three things I want us to take from this definition that we have taken time to look at; culture is learnt, culture stems from history, custom comes about as a result of human interaction.

 

Now, we are going to go back to Galatians 5:22-23, we read last week, and we are going to be starting from there bearing in mind some of the things we shared about the definition of culture. We took time to look at that so that when we are discussing about kingdom culture here, we can relate with some of the things that the Scripture will be opening our eyes to this morning. Galatians 5:22-23. The Bible makes us to understand that the fruits of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. Against all these things that are listed, there is no law, no argument. When somebody lives this kind of life, when somebody operates in this dimension, or express this kind of behavior or attitude, there is no law.

 

There won’t be any do’s and don’ts, because law talks about a regimented behavior. You are told not to do this, this is what you should do, sit down here, stand up, there are certain meters you need to take, when you want to do something. It just talks about this legalistic behavior. But is said when somebody is operating in this, there is no other legalistic behavior demand on your life. That’s what the Bible is saying, there is no law. So, when you operate in this realm, there is no legal requirement that would be against you. That’s what the Bible says. So, we understand from Galatians 5:22-23, that; it starts with something important, “but the fruit of the Spirit” what does that mean? It says all these things don’t just jump on you, but the fruit of the Spirit. Culture comes about by human interaction.

 

That’s physical culture, social culture, human culture. But when we talk about kingdom culture, kingdom culture comes about by the Spiritual interaction between man and God. What happens when man interacts with God? What comes about from that interaction is culture. If human beings would interact and give birth to a culture, the same thing happens in the Spiritual. When you interact with God, a culture will be birthed. And it is called kingdom culture. And the Bible in Galatians 5:22 introduces us to what gives birth to this culture. “But the fruit of the Spirit” when there is an interaction between your spirit and the Spirit of God, there would be a culture that would be produced as a result of the interaction between the culture. So, the interaction between the human spirit and the Spirit of God produces the kingdom culture.

 

So, kingdom culture will first not be learnt, will first not be introduced to you, until there is an interaction between your spirit and the Spirit of God. So, the Bible says “but the fruit of the Spirit is love.” So, kingdom culture by the way of definition is the result of the spiritual interaction with the Holy Spirit. Everyone that comes into the kingdom, and must operate in kingdom culture, must have interaction with the Holy Spirit.  That’s how the culture comes about. So, you can’t sit down and say you want to learn love, if only I can gather materials, if I can gather some deep things about love, I will start walking in it. No! it comes by spiritual interaction. Kingdom culture does not jump on people; it comes via spiritual interaction. The interaction that happens between your spirit and the Spirit of God would produce love, joy, peace, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. If you look at these things that were mentioned in Galatians 5:22-23, you will realize that these things cannot come in human interaction. You cannot interact with a human being so much so that you now have joy, peace, long-suffering. These things are Spirit produced. These are the things that are produced as a result of the interaction of your spirit and the Spirit of God. And that’s why when Jesus was leaving, He said I will not leave you as orphans, howbeit when I’m gone, I will send the Holy Spirit to you, He will teach you.

 

So, you will learn. Culture is leant habit and behavior. So, who do we learn kingdom culture from? The Holy Spirit. We learn from Him. He said He will teach us all things and lead you into all truth. So, we learn kingdom culture from the Holy Spirit. It has to be directly learnt. Because these things cannot be produced by human interaction. It is produced spiritually; they are called fruits of the Spirit. There must be a human interaction for there to be culture. There must be learning of values and habits for there to be culture, it doesn’t happen in the flesh, it happens in the Spirit. And what happens to believers where we come into Christ and we have actually started interacting with the Holy Spirit, and it looks as if these things are not fully operational in our lives.

 

I want us to see Romans 12:2, Apostle Paul mentioned something vital there, it said; and do not be conformed to this world; now there is a tendency, very high tendency and that’s what happens in the world, we are born into this systems, into this cosmos, when the child opens his eye for the first time, he opens his eye in this world and the world system is what this child is introduced into. Apostle Paul let us to understand in Romans 12:2; “and do not be conformed”, because there is a very high tendency to conform. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed.”  So, we understand that the culture of the kingdom is what you must learn, it doesn’t fall on you. It said do not conform, conformity means go with the flow. Every child born into this world, it is easy for that child, or that man or that woman to go with the flow. Because that’s what the person sees all around.

 

So, you come into the world, without teaching the child how to lie, the child tell lies, without teaching a child to be selfish, the child is already exhibiting the trait of selfishness. What you see in that child is conformity. And that is what has happened to our generation and the world through the years. What you will see is conformity.  And that’s why you will see that in the world people are not happy when they feel excluded from a social class or a social group. Because we are used to conformity, we are used to being conformed to a norm, to a value, to a habit. So, the Bible says here that do not be conformed to this world which is the norm, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Where does that take place? In your interaction with the Holy Spirit.

 

When you begin to interact with the Holy Spirit, what happens to you is that you are leaving conformity to transformation. So, you get to that point where you are not conforming but transforming. What does transformation mean? It means that you are leaving the state that you are, into another state. So, every man born into the world is born to conform. What happens when you want to step into kingdom culture is that you must leave conformity to transformation. You must allow the Holy Spirit to transform you by the renewing of your mind. That you may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God. That you may prove that you are a citizen of the kingdom of God. kingdom culture is what proves that you are a citizen of the kingdom. It is not in lip service. It is not in saying are you born again? Yes, I am! But is the kingdom culture evident and expressed through your life.

 

That’s why you will see that there are born again Christians that have actually confessed Jesus but they are still dealing with conformity. They have not transited to the place of transformation, and this happens only via interaction with the Holy Spirit. And it doesn’t happen overnight, that’s why Apostle Paul said “but be transformed by the renewing”- present continuous tense, it’s an ongoing process, its continuous in nature. So, until we all grow into the measure of the fullness of the stature of Christ, we keep at the point of transformation in the Holy Spirit, our minds keep being renewed day by day. When you see a man who becomes born again at a very old age, the man had lived in conformity for so long before he became born again, don’t expect an instant change, it will take time, it’s a process.

 

So, for one to attain kingdom culture, to get to that point where Apostle Paul said that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God, you must continually have that interaction with the Holy Spirit. That’s why often times we see in the body of Christ that we are all work in progress. Because there is no one that can say I have attained. That’s why Apostle Paul will say after all the milestones in faith; He would say; that I keep on pressing. I forget the things that are behind, and I press forward to lay hold of the things that are ahead. Because he understands the transformation process. He said the things that I wish I am doing I find myself not doing it, I find myself doing the things I wish I am not doing, it’s a battle of conformity. And what can happen is that we are born into the culture of the world, we must be transformed into the culture of the kingdom.

 

We were born and conformed, because every man was born into the world in Adam. So, we are born into the culture of the world, but we are transformed in Christ Jesus by the help of the Holy Spirit, into the culture of the kingdom. That must continue to ring in our spiritual consciousness. I was born into the culture of this world, I must be transformed into the culture of the kingdom. I want to read that romans 12:2 to us in the passion translation. It says; Stop imitating the ideals and opinions of the culture around you. I love the way it puts it. Stop imitating the ideals, because that is what we do, we find ourselves imitating the ideas and opinions of the world around us. So, if they are doing something, you want to follow suit. That’s what is trending, that’s what is moving, I don’t want to be left alone, I don’t want to feel as if I am not happening. But the Bible says stop imitating, you must stop it.

 

Stop imitating the ideals and opinions of the culture around you, but be inwardly transformed, from the inside out by the Holy Spirit, through a total reformation. Of how you think. Let the Holy Spirit do a reformation of your mind. When a system is going bad and is corrupted, what happens if you want to enjoy that system? You format it. You reset it, let it go back to factory setting. And that’s what the Holy Spirit does with us, because in God we are perfect. We came in this world, to the corruption and conformity of this world to be corrupted, so, we must be transformed, and formatted back to factory setting, how God made us, how we came from God. So, it said through a total reformation of how you think, this will empower you. This kind of life, your transformation is what will empower you, to discern God’s will as you live a beautiful life, satisfying and perfect in his eyes.

 

It said your transformation, your reformation, will empower you to live the life that God has called you to. So, kingdom culture actually precedes any other thing in the kingdom. Once you become born again, and you are adopted, into sonship, you are adopted into the beloved, you must necessarily come into the school of the Spirit, so that you can interact with the Holy Spirit, so that the kingdom culture, so that Christ can be formed in you.  Before you start thinking of working in the giftings of God, before you start thinking about power, before you start thinking about all those things. Let this culture be the first point of call. It is so important.

 

John 15:19-20. Jesus made a statement there that I want us to see. It said; “If you were of the world” please not what Jesus is saying; it says “If you were” not “if you are”. “If you were of the world, the world would love its own.” So, Jesus is saying you cannot be of the world. “if you were” meaning you are not “of”, you are in this world, but not of this world. So, let there be a distinction. So, when you want to mark progress, when you want to mark advancement, you cannot use the world standard. And it is good for us to hear this as born again Christians, as children of God, as followers of the way. You cannot mark your progress in life by the world standard. You cannot mark your progress and your becoming as a person in the kingdom according to the worlds standard. You are not supposed to look like them, you are not supposed to be like them, they are no yard stick for you.

 

Jesus said if you were of the world, the world will love its own, yet because you are not. This is our lord and our master speaking, He said; Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. So, if you have been fighting so hard and praying, for the world to love you, Jesus said the world hates you because I chose you out of the world. He said Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also. So, Jesus said let the world never be your yard stick, I chose you out of the world, I did not use you to conform with the world. I chose you out to be reformed and transformed into me. So, we must understand that kingdom culture would always conflict with the world culture. Don’t live on the worlds terms, live on Gods terms.

 

What is Gods terms for your life? For your citizenship in the kingdom, terms and conditions apply. Live on Gods terms, not on Gods terms. The world must not dictate to you; you must live according to the dictates of God. that’s you exuding and expressing kingdom culture. You are supplying what God is demanding, not what the world is demanding. So, when the world lays a demand on your life, no supply. They must be short of supply. But when God lays a demand on your life, there must be supply. So, it’s about the demand that the Lord is laying on your life, not the world. 1 John 2:15-17. Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. So, you understand that the world culture and kingdom culture, they don’t have a meeting ground. It says do not, don’t romance, don’t seduce, don’t be found, doing the worlds terms.

 

Do not love the world or the things in the world, if anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. So, how can you call yourself a kingdom citizen when the love of the king is not in you. Now listen to what it says; For all that is in the world, the culture of the world, what the world celebrates, —the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. So, when we go back to Galatians 5 and we read from verse 19, it says the works of the flesh are evident and it started mentioning them drunkenness, adultery, fornication, it says these are the things in the world. And it summarized them into three headings; the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life. That’s what is in the world. So the Bible says in verse 17, And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God; he who embraces kingdom culture, he who possess and expresses kingdom culture abides forever.

 

So, love can never be out of fashion in the kingdom. Joy can never be out of fashion in the kingdom. Peace can never be out of fashion in the kingdom, long suffering, gentleness, faithfulness, self -control can never be out of fashion in the kingdom, it will always trend. So, the Bible says he who does the will of God abides, remains, is settled forever. Because these are eternal traits. Because when we talk about kingdom culture, it’s a culture that out-lives this realm. So, we now see why the Scripture says liars do not have a part, they can’t enter the kingdom, they don’t have what qualifies them. When you have a culture that does not fit into a place, you become an outcast. When the Bible says that those that does not show the culture of the kingdom will be cast into hell its justice. If you don’t behave like us, you can’t be with us.

 

If you are not looking like God, you can’t be in His fold. That’s how it is. Where your culture belongs to is where you will be. So, God makes it clear, He who lives by the kingdom culture will last. Colossians 3:9, so that will understand that kingdom culture is a very important subject in the kingdom. “Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, 10 and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him that is factory setting-according to the image. Verse 11 where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all.” So, who is your yard stick for kingdom culture? Christ! There is neither Greek nor Jew. The culture of the kingdom is not about the nation you come from, or the color of your skin, it’s about Christ. The culture is one in Christ, its alive in Christ.

 

So, what is the uniformity or the uniform, ground for our kingdom culture? It is Christ! So, whether you are black or white, whether you live in Africa or Asia or America or Australia, Christ is all and in all. That’s the culture of the kingdom, we all through our culture from the king of the kingdom. Bible says the kingdoms of this world will become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ and we shall reign. Coming with the kingdom is the culture. Christ is the focus this kingdom. Colossians 2:8. Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men-the culture of men, according to the basic principles of the world.  Do you see that the world is the enemy and a strong force that stands against the kingdom? And it said; not according to Christ. So, Christ is the culture. Beware lest any man cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit according to the culture and traditions of men, according to the basic principles of the world and not according to Christ. It must be according to Christ.

 

The culture of the kingdom that is outside, that is not according to Christ, is not of the kingdom. It must be according to Christ for it to be a kingdom culture. I want us to that same Colossians 2:16 to verse 17. So, let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or Sabbaths. Sabbath is included, it said let no one judge you, it said in Christ you are free. let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or Sabbaths, 17 which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ. Do we remember Galatians 5:23? Against such there is no law. No legal requirement. It says the substance-the substance is Christ. Never disregard Christ, He is the focus of the culture. The Bible says no one says Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit, and no one says Jesus is accursed by the Holy Spirit. Christ is the culture. The culture of this kingdom is embodied in Christ, Christ Jesus is the embodiment of our culture. 

 

Looking unto Jesus the author and the finisher of our faith, our culture, the beginning and the end of our kingdom culture syllabus and curriculum. It is all about Christ, the real thing, the real culture belongs to Christ. We are going to close with this Scripture in 1 Corinthians 14:1. We have read 1 Corinthians 13 last week, talking about love, love is so important in the kingdom, even though you have spiritual gifts, even though you have faith that can move mountains, even though you speak in tongues, even though you have the gift of prophecy and you understand mysteries and if you don’t have love you are nothing. So, in 1 Corinthians 14:1 it says; “pursue love”, let love be your pursuit, the fruit of the Spirit is love, let love, let the kingdom culture, let the interaction that happens between you and the Holy Spirit be your pursuit. The produce, the fruit of that interaction, let it be your pursuit.

 

Pursue love and desire it. Pursue love, don’t pursue spiritual gifts, desire it. Let love be your pursuit, let love be what you live and die for, but desire, have a godly desire for spiritual gifts, but don’t pursue it. It says go after it, go after love. There is a particular translation that puts it this way, it says; lay hold of the character of love, pursue, go after the life of love. Go after the kingdom culture, let it be well seated in your spirit. Go after it because your life depends on it. And desire spiritual gifts. So, this Scripture made it clear to us that before you can start having desire for spiritual gifts, you must pursue love.

 

So, what’s your pursuit? Is it that you are pursuing spiritual gift and you now have desire for love? Because that’s what is going on in the kingdom. People are pursuing spiritual gift then they desire love.  Pursuit means you are going all out, you are paying attention, you are giving it your all. Pursue love, pursue the kingdom culture, pursue the fruits of the Spirit, then desire the gifts.

 

I pray the Lord will help us in the name of Jesus.


Thanks for the gift of your time, I am Lara Gboyega Adedeji!

Feel free to share your thoughts or testimony in the comment box below. I promise to respond to them as soon as possible!


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Word of Confession: (Optional)

Lord Jesus, I confess to you that I have sinned against the LORD God - in the rebellion of my heart, I have disappointed your expectations on my life. I have fallen from Your grace and followed wrong influences around me. Today, I retrace my steps back to you - and I ask that in your mercy you accept me as your son and give to me (again) the promise of the Father - the Holy Spirit. Lord Jesus, please, come and make my heart your home, and from there rule in the affairs of all men. In Jesus Name I have prayed.

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Lara Gboyega Adedeji

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I am a Woman of God's Purpose in Nigeria. I Coach Women in Leadership for true National Emancipation. I am a Spiritual Identity Mentor & ED, Flickers of Hope Foundation, Abuja-Nigeria!


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