God has a purpose for Christchurch. He is not just building a church; he is building a church that can release his Kingdom in the city. He wants Christchurch to be a city that is a model to the nations of a people living under the Government of God. That was the vision of the men and women who founded this city. God intends New Zealand to be a city where he establishes and demonstrates his Kingdom. Christchurch will be brought under the government of God to be a light to the nations.

Kingdom Vision

When David Pawson visited New Zealand in 1982, he brought two burdens that God had given him for the nation. One burden, which has not received much attention, is one of the most important prophetic words that has been spoken in this nation.:

God wants New Zealand back.
He wants New Zealand back as
a nation that will be a model to the nations
of a people who are living under the government of God.
God intends New Zealand to be one of those nations
where he demonstrates his Kingdom.
New Zealand is a nation that could be brought
under the government of God
and be a light to the nations.
This was an important message for New Zealand. The kingdom of man is rising to a climax in Europe and the United States, but it is also running out of steam. The result will be a time of darkness, disasters and troubles all over the world. However, God has a plan for this time. His light shines brightest in the darkness.

God is establishing safe havens where the knowledge of the Kingdom of God can be preserved through darkness. He is preparing places where his people who can be a light shining in the darkness that is coming. As the kingdom of man collapses, he will bring his kingdom to a fulfilment in those safe havens. He will then send an army of people out to push back the darkness and release the Kingdom of God.

Christchurch has a special role in this plan. The kingdom of God will be established first in Christchurch. It will spread out from there across the rest of New Zealand. God's people in Christchurch will have a key role in developing the knowledge of the kingdom during the time of darkness. Christchurch will provide a model of the kingdom that can be copied in other nations and continents when they come out of the time of distress and have turned back to God.

The Kingdom of God is central to God's purpose for Christchurch. Every Christian who is called to live in Christchurch needs to have an understanding of the Kingdom of God, or they will not fully understand what God is doing.

Founders Vision

John Robert Godley and the men who founded the Canterbury Association had a kingdom vision. They believed that a time of darkness was coming; lights were going out in Europe. In 1848, the year that the Canterbury Association was established, there was revolution in Europe. Godley and his colleagues feared that revolution in Europe would sweep civilisation and everything away. Their aspiration was to create in New Zealand a society based on faith and obedience to God where civilisation could be preserved from the forces destroying society in the old world. This was a prophetic vision.

This vision is reflected in the layout of the city. The centre of the city is called the square, but it actually has the shape of a cross. A cross at the centre of the city symbolises the salvation of Jesus Christ and the victory that he established for God. Ironically, the centre of Sydney, (a place of crime and evil) is called Kings Cross though it is not a cross. The true King's cross is in Christchurch and is called a square.

Failed Vision

The Canterbury Association believed they were called to establish the Kingdom of God in Christchurch, but they did not achieve their goal. Their vision was corrupted from the start by the pride and superiority of the class society that affects most of what happens in Christchurch.

The founders had the right vision, but their strategy was wrong. Coming from a Christendom background, they assumed that the Kingdom of God would be established by the church controlling the institutions of society. They reinforced their method by building a cathedral on the cross at the centre of the city. This symbolised the church dominating the institutions around it.

This situation did not last. As society secularised, the key institutions moved out of the square and away from the shadow of the cathedral. The influence of the church was gradually squeezed out of the life of the city.

MIC Spirit

When the institutions of the world pulled away from the influence of the church, it tried to maintain its control with contriving and manipulation. This opened the way for a spirit of manipulation intimidation and control (MIC) to enter the city. This spirit eventually became the principality and power that controls the city.


The battle for Christchurch will be intense. Christchurch will have a special role in establishing the Kingdom. It will be a centre from which the kingdom vision will be taken to the nations. The model, which is set up here, will be copied all over the world. The city is strategic, so Satan will not give it up easily; this battle will not be won easily.

The earthquakes of 2010 and 2011 were an attempt by the spiritual powers of evil to destroy the city, so that God's plan for establishing his kingdom in the city would be foiled. Most of the buildings at the centre of the city have been destroyed. In the physical, Christchurch became a centreless city. This destruction was a mistake, because the powers of evil did not understand God's plan.

After the earthquake God said,

Do not be distracted by the earthquake.
Do not be impressed by the earthquake.
Compared to the power of my Holy Spirit,
the power of the earthquake is nothing.
Do not let the earthquake set your agenda.
God's plans and his purposes for Christchurch have not changed.
Be shaped his word and his Spirit
Commit yourself to obeying his will
and fulfilling his purposes
and you will see the Kingdom of God revealed.
The earthquake made Christchurch a city without religious and political institutions at the centre. What the spiritual powers of evil have achieved at the physical level by the earthquake will be fulfilled in the political and spiritual, as God's plan is fulfilled by the Holy Spirit.

The cathedral took a serious hit in the earthquake when the tower tumbled to the ground. This reflects God's original plan and opens the way for a different type of kingdom. The Kingdom of God will not be established from the centre by the church. The old strategy where the church controlled the institutions of society has died. The collapse of the cathedral in the centre symbolises that death and opens the way for a different type of Kingdom based on the cross and the Holy Spirit.

The Avon River flows through the centre of the city in the shape of an S representing the Holy Spirit. God's plan had an empty cross at the centre with the Holy Spirit flowing through the city to bring his life. God does not create his kingdom at the centre and then push out to expand his control. His strategy is the opposite. He will establish his kingdom from the outside in, as the Holy Spirit works on the edges where his activities can be hidden from sight.

Invisible Army

God is already building small groups of kingdom seekers throughout the city. They are an invisible spiritual army that will take back the city for him. The invisible army emerges among ordinary people on the edges of the city. Small groups of people are coming together to seek him and support each other. These commando units are the key to the victory of his kingdom. Small lights of life are coming on all over the city, as the Holy Spirit moves in their hearts.

During a time of darkness, Christians will come together in small groups to support for each other. When times are difficult, they will care for everyone in their neighbourhood.

A season of shaking is coming,
when many of the foundations that we trust
will be swept away.
God is calling together small groups of people
who can support each other through this storm
who can stand together in Jesus
while everything around them is shaken.
They will be sold out for Jesus.
doing his will, by obeying the voice of the Holy Spirit.
They will lay aside the things of the world,
that would encumber them
and will live simply on what God provides.
They will share everything with each other,
and with those around them.
These groups of people will be drawn together
by love for Jesus,
and bound together by a commitment to love each other.
They will be mighty warriors in prayer,
able to go out together in the power of the Spirit.
They will be experienced with gifts of the Holy Spirit
and ready to deal with any situation.
These people will be prepared for distress,
and equipped for victory.
God's biggest challenge is getting his people to gather together in response to his calling.

Centreless City

The earthquakes really damaged the finances of the city. When the next big crunch comes, there will be no room to move. I am not sure what will be the cause of the next disaster, but the Christchurch economy will be devastated. The city councillors will flee from their responsibility, and the city infrastructure will collapse. The support of the government will disappear at the same time. Political power in the city will be swept away.

When the political leaders flee from power, the principalities and powers that have colluded with the political powers at the centre of the city will be swept away with them. The centre of the city is the place where political power and the powers of evil meet together to leverage their control. When their base of power is gone, opening the way will be open for God to build his kingdom from the edges. The city will be set free from the MIC spirit. Religious structures will fall apart, opening the way for Kingdom Communities will emerge in their place.

God will establish his kingdom in a centreless city. He will teach his invisible army how to become kingdom communities that transform their neighbourhoods. When the institutions of the city collapse, these kingdom communities will provide support for everyone in their neighbourhood. They will begin providing the services that the political leaders are failing to provide.

As the structures of society fall apart, kingdom communities will demonstrate a way of life that will appeal to a shaken world. Each kingdom community will be a microcosm of the Kingdom of God, providing everything that councils and governments are unable to deliver. The Kingdom of God will expand from the edges, as the number of kingdom communities increases quickly, and the new way of living spreads from place to place.

This Kingdom will come in Christchurch through a network of small groups of people listening to the voice of the Spirit, sharing with each other, suffering in the face of persecution and serving the people of the city. As the Holy Spirit is given freedom to do his work, the kingdom will flow out and be welcome throughout the city.

Launching Pad

The world is moving towards a time of distress. This season is a short one, because it is a time of transition that opens the way for the emergence of the Kingdom of God. The time of distress will be cut short when human governments collapse under the weight of their failed programs and broken promises. Their rise to power will be grand, but their collapse will be spectacular. It will be so spectacular that faith in human government and political power will be destroyed forever.

When human governments fail, people who trusted in political power will be so disappointed and disillusioned that they will be desperate for a better saviour who can be trusted to keep his promises. They will rush to put their faith in Jesus, join his kingdom. The Holy Spirit will launch the kingdom from Christchurch into the rest of the nation. The model established in Christchurch during the time of distress will be copied throughout New Zealand.

New Zealand will be a light to the nations: a demonstration of a country living under the government of God that can be copied throughout the world.