Many have attempted over the years to thwart the growth of God’s Kingdom. Incited by Satan and his minions, men have done all in their power to keep the Gospel from going forth and “infecting” others. The topic reminds me of numerous examples where – on the surface – it appears as though the God haters were successful, but God has His ways, and His plans and purposes for the redemption of mankind will not be stopped.
The first issue we need to address in this subject is why evil men try to keep God’s Word from spreading. Of course, the answer is simple. Those who do all in their power to keep Jesus Christ from being known are in thrall to Satan. God has given to all men the ability to know Him. He has shown who He is through the wonders of this world, from the creation order and beauty of nature, to the almost inexhaustible complexity of life that science has revealed. As Paul said in Romans 1:20:
For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.
This being the case, what is their excuse? They have chosen to reject the evidence and so opened themselves to spiritual deception. If someone won’t believe what God has painstakingly given him to enable his belief in a transcendent being above all others, then he will seek other answers and be subject to the lies that Satan so readily conceives. When a person hears and believes the falsehoods of the enemy, he turns further from God and appropriates the hatred of the beings in the spiritual realm, who are themselves attempting to avoid His judgment and everlasting punishment.
From the beginning, Satan and his followers have formulated different ways to prevent the fulfillment of God’s Word. If they could only show God up as a liar, they figured they could gain the upper hand. But, He has continually devised His own schemes to counter those of His opponents. This is where Mark 4:26-29 comes into play:
And he said, “The kingdom of God is as if a man should scatter seed on the ground. He sleeps and rises night and day, and the seed sprouts and grows; he knows not how. The earth produces by itself, first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear. But when the grain is ripe, at once he puts in the sickle, because the harvest has come.”
To the constant frustration of Satan and his human sycophants, the growth of God’s Kingdom is a mystery. How is the seed scattered far and wide? How does it grow in seemingly arid conditions? How does it produce such an abundant harvest?
Consider nations that are hostile to God, whose gods are Communism, Islam, or Hinduism. From the outside, it seems as though these ideologies would prevail. With the government, friends, even family members against those who turn to Jesus, it seems hopeless that Christianity could spread and flourish. When all those around the followers in Christ are intent on snuffing out their faith through persecution of unimaginable wickedness, how in the world can the kingdom of God grow?
But, it does. The roots of a plant grow underground – often wide and deep – before any greenery sprouts. We only have to think of the underground church in China. Some years ago it was estimated there were only about 100,000 believers in all that huge country. More recently, the numbers are believed to be upwards of 100,000,000 Christ-followers.
For all their efforts to stamp out Christianity, the communist authorities must be beside themselves. Communism and Christianity are incompatible. A person cannot follow both in any way, shape, or form. Communism is an anti-God ideology with the State as sovereign and above all; it alone must be worshiped. That’s about as far from true Christianity as one can get.
To repeat the overused expression: God has a wonderful plan for your life. Yes, He does, but it’s so much more than “your best life now” in this world. God has determined that human beings have value; so much worth, in fact, that He wishes to transform us so as to put us to work on eternal matters. He will continue this process begun in our fleshly bodies as He Raptures His true church and causes our metamorphosis into having glorified, spiritual bodies.
But, as it is written, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him”—
God’s Kingdom will prevail. I, for one, can’t wait!