The and in this title indicates two entities, two things and not one. In a spiritual sense, the world means not the planet earth, but a system of operation or set of standards governed by certain beliefs. In other words, it’s a philosophy or theory about man’s existence and the set of rules that define that system. We act and live according to what we hold dear. The Kingdom of God could also be defined by that definition. But the difference is the belief structure that distinguishes the two.
The world system tells us to look out for ourselves first. Afterall, no one else will. Fame, power, and money are all important. These highly treasured assets elevate our status in life. The richer you are, the more toys you possess, the more influence you have over others—these determine your value. This definition is broad but gets to the essence of the beliefs of people who are operating within this world’s structure. “Follow your heart” is a key axiom. When thinking of death, many of these folks aren’t sure where they will go. At first reading, some may disagree with these statements, but the real test is to ask: what do you value most?
The Kingdom of God is the other belief structure. In this kingdom, people believe that God is of most value. Their focus is to live in a way that pleases Him, to choose to put Him first, to worship and honor Him, and to read His word, the Bible. It’s all about Him and not self. When they die, they have the hope of eternal life with God. At times, people in this Kingdom of God find themselves thinking like people in the world, but the Holy Spirit generally nudges them back on track. The hearts of the people in this group have been changed.
Case in point. A well-known politician recently threw a party for himself and scaled back to invite only family and friends. Somehow that included many Hollywood celebrities. Despite a COVID surge in the area, people arrived without masks and forgot about social distancing. When the guests began to leave the party, the police had to direct traffic on the congested roads. Was God honored by the event?
Another case in point. A different gathering happened in a church in El Paso, Texas. Here, the hosts served food and drink much like the other party. But the attendees were different. No one came from Hollywood, and none of the attendees were famous. Most had no homes. In fact, they lived in tents around the city. While the hosts provided food to nourish the bodies of these homeless people and informed them of local resources to help, they also informed them about the other Kingdom. This was their opportunity to choose where they would spend eternity. “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.” 1 John 5:13 Why did the church bunch throw this party? Not to honor themselves, but God.
Yes, there are two different existences we can choose in this life. Which would you like to seek?