Jesus’ building of His church as a promise made in Matthew 16:18 and a promise kept in Acts 2 is history’s most stunning and enduring proof of God’s sovereignty and providence. His ability to take a multitude of moving parts and work all things together so that He could be both just and the justifier of those who obey the gospel and are thus added to Christ’s church (Acts 2:47) is absolutely awe inspiring.
Jesus’ three simple words—“Thy kingdom come”—contain three simply profound truths about God’s sovereignty.
First, they acknowledge the profound fact of God’s sovereignty. His absolute omnipotence is demonstrated in the immutable laws of nature: seed time and harvest; winter and summer; day and night. Each pair marches to the beat of an unstoppable divine cadence. Because of His omniscience (Psalm 139:1-6) and His omnipotence (Psalm 139:7-12), Jehovah has always reigned, is presently reigning, and will always reign as the lone Sovereign over all He has created.
Second, they request (prior to Jesus’ establishment of His church) and recognize (after its establishment) the ultimate demonstration of God’s sovereignty. In spite of all that the god of this world did from the garden of Eden to the garden where Jesus’ dead body was placed in a new and borrowed tomb (John 19:41), Satan could not prevent the Sovereign God’s accomplishment in Christ Jesus of heaven’s eternal purpose (cf. Ephesians 3:11).
Third, they anticipate the final demonstration of God’s sovereignty. When time is no more, the kingdom of heaven will become God’s kingdom in heaven (1 Corinthians 15:24-28; 2 Timothy 4:18). After every enemy of God—sin, death, Hades, Satan, and every worker of iniquity (Revelation 20:11-15)—has been sentenced and eternally placed in their prison of punishment called hell, God’s final and ultimate demonstration of His sovereignty will have been carried out. The tabernacle of God will be with men; the redeemed shall be His people, and God Himself will be with them and be their God (Revelation 21:3). “And they shall reign forever and ever” (Revelation 22:5).