From “Sermon on the Mount, Sermon VI” (1748)
The kingdom of God comes to a particular person when he repents and believes the gospel; when he is taught of God, not only to know himself, but to know Jesus Christ and him crucified. As “this is eternal life, to know the only true God and Jesus Christ whom he hath sent;” so it is the kingdom of God begun below, set up in a believer’s heart.
The Lord God Omnipotent reigns when he is known through Christ Jesus. He takes unto himself his mighty power so he may subdue all things unto himself. He goes on in the soul conquering and to conquer, until he has put all things under his feet, every thought brought captive to the obedience of Christ.
For this we pray; but we also pray for the coming of God’s everlasting kingdom, the kingdom of glory in heaven which is the continuation and perfection of the kingdom of grace on earth. Consequently, our prayer is offered for the whole intelligent creation who are all interested in this grand event, the final renovation of all things, by God’s putting an end to misery and sin, to infirmity and death, taking all things into his own hands, and setting up the kingdom which endures throughout all ages.
John Wesley (1703-1791) was an Anglican priest and evangelist, and the founder of the Methodist movement. After experiencing a profound conversion in 1738, he began a ministry of itinerant evangelistic preaching, travelling an average of 8000 miles a year and making thousands of converts. He sparked a renewal in preaching and discipleship that swept across the Anglo-American world and is one of the fathers of evangelicalism. He is commemorated on March 3 on the liturgical calendars of several Anglican churches. The text is adapted for contemporary readers.