Church Culture or Kingdom Culture?
Rodney Lloyd

God’s cry for the nations resounds in the hearts of Rodney and Nita Lloyd. They have been in ministry together since 1974, having planted and overseen churches in the United States and ministered to churches and Bible Schools in the USA and in Europe, Asia, and Africa. They are both graduates of RHEMA Bible Training Center in Broken Arrow, OK, where Rodney was also an instructor for 3 years. They are currently members of the New Covenant Ministries International (NCMI) translocal team. Their Kingdom message stirs hearts to faith and obedience.

Rodney and Nita are doing apostolic work on the African continent in South Africa, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Rwanda, and Zambia, as well as in the USA, equipping church leaders and disciples of Jesus. Nita’s ministry to women through the years has yielded godliness in those she’s influenced. She is also involved with helping women who are victims of sexual violence in the DRC.

Their passion is Acts 14:22 – “Establishing and strengthening disciples and encouraging them to stand firm in the faith.”

You can contact Rodney at for more information regarding their ministry and missions work.

The Purpose of the Church

Church Culture or Kingdom Culture?To rescue and build or equip people (make disciples) with a DNA to carry God’s Kingdom everywhere—to the ends of the earth

  • Build the church primarily of new converts; then disciple them.
  • Make disciples who make disciples: An outward-focused, kingdom-oriented discipleship that impacts our world. Jesus spoke often of making DISCIPLES and of the HARVEST.
  • He spent 3 years making disciples.
  • We have tended to think of the harvest in terms of unbelievers repenting and coming to Christ.
  • But is it possible that unbelievers coming to faith in Christ is the sprouting of new life & NOT the harvest?
  • New life sprouting is wonderful, but not very useful without growth.
  • A young corn plant shooting up through the dirt is hope for a harvest, but that corn shoot doesn’t provide what God designed for it until it grows to a complete, full, useful stalk.
  • Is it possible the harvest is DISCIPLES MADE, bringing us to full use for God’s glory? I believe this is the harvest.
  • Just as the farmer “disciples” the young, new sprouts caring for them, feeding, tending and protecting them, until they are mature and sustainable—so it is with us.
  • We serve people and win them to Christ. Then we disciple them, caring for them, feeding, tending and protecting them, until they are mature and sustainable: “useful for the Master’s work. THE HARVEST!
  • Live missionally—NOT just simply doing mission activities.
  • We are called to minister to people where they are, not where we are. This means we go where they are and don’t expect them to come where we are.
  • In Matthew 28:18-20; Mark 16:15-20; Luke 24:46-49; and Acts 1:6-8 Jesus gave the disciples, and by extension His church, the only commission He ever gave: to make disciples of the nations (Greek: ethnos or people groups). This is every local church’s mission!

In God’s mind:

  • Every believer is a missionary.
  • Every place is a mission field.

Planting, Watering, Growing

1 Corinthians 3:6, 7, 9 CEV

6) I planted the seeds, Apollos watered them but God made them sprout and grow. 7) What matters isn’t those who planted or watered, but God who made the plants grow. 9) Apollos and I work together for God, and you are God’s garden and God’s building.

  • If we focus on planting and watering, God will grow the church.
  • We should not make church growth a goal.
  • As leaders, if we define “church growth” as more people in our meetings, our focus will be on getting more people in the meeting—those we don’t have—and not on those God has given us to equip.
  • If we define “church growth” as those God has given us coming to maturity, they will have our focus and THEY will grow the numbers in the kingdom, whether or not they end up in our meetings.
  • Church growth is a fruit of fulfilling our functions.
  • As we plant and water, God will make the church grow according to the grace He has given us to equip His people.
  • You are God’s garden/field, God’s building.
  • The whole purpose of a field is to be fruitful.
  • God’s building is where He lives.
  • When we plant churches, we are planting into a community a house (God’s people) where He lives; we are planting a garden from which the community is to gain life and sustenance.
  • This is not to say the community ONLY or even MAINLY gains life and sustenance through the various meetings of the church. They certainly can experience God’s life in the meetings but the reality is—most unbelievers in any community will never show up at any church meeting. It is foreign to them.
  • The community in which God has planted us is to gain life and sustenance through the lives of individual church people wherever we are.
  • To repeat, we are called to minister to people where THEY are—not where WE are.
  • Live the new life—it attracts people!
  • Then give that new life to those who are attracted by it!

God is planting His house—His people (not a place, not a building, not a meeting) in cities, towns, and villages for 2 reasons:

  • To house His presence.
  • To provide fruit for others to partake of.

God’s intention was for the church to be kingdom-minded.

Somewhere along the way the church adopted a “church-culture” mindedness and lost its kingdom mindedness.

For churches to be effective, they must be kingdom minded, embracing a kingdom culture and casting off the church culture as it has become.

The Practical Relationship between the Kingdom of God and the Church


The Kingdom of God IS; it is complete; it was never started, it has always been.

So we don’t build the kingdom.

  • We embrace it.
  • We further it.
  • We expand it.
  • We extend it.

The Kingdom Defined

  • The Kingdom of God is the universal rule of God, His absolute dominion over all creation. The word “kingdom” literally refers to the “king’s domain.” It is the realm in which the will of the King is done (Matthew 6:10).
  • When we surrender to Jesus’ Lordship, His rule/authority begins over all aspects of our being. God’s rule/authority is GOOD and liberates us (Isaiah 9:7).
  • The church is the doorway for the kingdom to come into the earth. We are the means that God’s kingdom comes and His will is done. His kingdom comes, is spread and is advanced through us, His church, His people.
  • The church is the vehicle of the kingdom of God; we are to carry His kingdom everywhere we go.
  • We are called to lay down our lives, to live the kingdom life of sacrifice so that people may be won to Christ and discipled (Mt. 28:18-20)

Seeing Jesus for Who He is and relating to Him accordingly is the gateway to His Kingdom coming on earth as it is in heaven. He is King of the Kingdom, and when we on earth relate to Him as our King—following and obeying the King—His kingdom will come through us. This is how the Church becomes the gateway through which His Kingdom comes into the earth.

The church is the vehicle on earth through which Jesus continues to carry out His earthly mission. The Church’s call is to spread the reign of Christ and His kingdom throughout the earth. Making disciples is the vehicle through which this happens.

“We need to start tearing down the wall between ‘sacred’ church activities and ‘secular’ business activities and start seeing our jobs and businesses as avenues to reach people with the message of hope and purpose in Jesus.” – Paul Nichols

  • To be a believer is not only to HAVE Jesus as our Savior—fire insurance for the future—but to RELATE to Jesus as Lord and King. He is Lord all the time and everywhere:
  • the home
  • the neighborhood
  • on our jobs
  • in the marketplace
  • in the classroom
  • in our relationships
  • even when I am all alone and there is no one to see me and what I do, He is Lord and King.

This is how the kingdom comes and is advanced and spread—through our lives.

  • The church is the only organism on earth that doesn’t exist for itself; we exist for the Father and for the benefit of others.

Sunday is not Game Day—everyday is Game Day!!

  • When we make “Sunday church” and “having church” the focus, it is backward. Sunday is important, but not most important.
  • When we have a build up to Sunday, making our greatest efforts all week to having a “good service” without trying to, we feed the idea that Christianity is about Sunday.
  • But doing this is treating Sunday as the last day of the week; but Sunday is the first day of the week!
  • Sunday is “impact and launch” day. It is a time for believers to:
  • Gather to worship the King.
  • Reconnect with other believers, sharing all God has done in our lives through the week; TESTIMONIES!
  • Hear and be impacted by what God is saying corporately through the teaching and preaching as well as through the prophetic.
  • Then GO live the message we heard before those in our spheres of influence.
  • We need to learn to live in the same way Jesus did: in a non-churchy, non-religious, life-giving way, serving people with compassionate hearts, and not judging them for the sin they are trapped in.

A few years ago, the Lord asked me:

  • “Do you need more from me, OR do I need more from you?”
  • He followed that up with another question, “If you’re not living in the measure I’ve already given you, why should I give you more?”
  • Then He took me to Acts 2:
  • The Holy Spirit was POURED OUT.
  • He MOVED them OUT.
  • Two chapters later, He was POURED OUT again.

Do you want more from God? Then give away to others what He has given to you and He will give you more!

What is the dynamic of the gathering, the assembly of the church?

  • When we gather, what happens in the gathering is a SEED for the week and for the rest of our lives.
  • God’s desire is that there be much more happen as a result of the meeting—through our lives out in the world—than happened in the meeting.
  • It may be that what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. It should not be that what happens in the church meeting stays in the church meeting.

Why do we Gather?

  • We Gather to Glorify God.
  • We Gather to be Girded—prepared, reinforced.
  • We Gather to be Goaded—prodded and pressed.
  • Why do we need to be Girded and Goaded?
  • So we will Go Give away what we’ve been G

Sunday is a time for:

  • The family coming together to worship the Father.
  • To receive the Word of the Lord (in its various forms: preaching/teaching, the prophetic, testimonies, sharing one with another) and impartation.
  • Commissioning for the week.

Church culture has become inward and self-focused:

  • It is “needy” and life-draining.
  • It fosters over-dependence on the “MOG/WOG” Man of God/Woman of God
  • In the Old Testament, the prophets were the Man of God. In the New Testament, all are God’s people. 1 Peter 2:10, etc.
  • It keeps “sheep” dumb and helpless.
  • It imparts a DNA of “spectators who ‘STAY’” rather than “servants who ‘GO’.”
  • It imparts a DNA of sitting and waiting for Jesus to return.
  • The church culture produces PROFESSIONAL ministers.
  • Maintaining a church culture produces consumer Christians: believers who come to the meeting to get something but rarely give away to others what they have from the Lord.
  • Maintaining a church culture produces a mindset of “it’s all about me.”

Kingdom culture is outward and “God and others focused”

  • It is sufficient in Christ and life-giving.
  • It is about making disciples.
  • It is serving-others focused
  • It recognizes the essential function of the 5 ministry gifts and leadership but also develops a mindset in ALL of “I too am a minister” of reconciliation and of His kingdom.
  • It brings revelation, development and release of all to function as ministers/servants.
  • It imparts a DNA of participants/servants who “GO” rather than spectators who STAY.
  • It imparts a DNA of “doing His business” until He returns (Luke 19:11-13).
  • The kingdom culture produces RELATIONAL ministers.
  • Maintaining a kingdom culture yields producer disciples: believers who have left all to follow Jesus and to allow His life to flow through them to help and disciple others.

Maintaining a kingdom culture produces a mindset of ‘It’s all about the King and His kingdom and its spread throughout the earth.”