(Note: Kingdom of God = Kingdom of Heaven, [Matt 19:23-24] )
Many today do not really understand what Godís kingdom is all about. Some think it is here today, others think it is just a figure of speech, still others think it is in heaven and that is where they are going when they die. [See: Heaven and Hell] Let's examine what the Bible has to say on this subject.
Characteristics of Godís kingdom.
For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.(Romans 14:17) (KJV throughout unless noted)
For the kingdom of God is not in word, but in power.(1 Cor 4:20)
There are many parables that the Messiah used to teach us of His kingdom. Why did He use parables? [Matt 13:10-11]
The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one;(Matt 13:38)
Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls:(Matt 13:44-45)
See also the parable of the pounds in Luke 19:11-27.
God's people are representatives of his kingdom.
But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you.(Luke 11:20)
And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.(Luke 17:20-21)
Let's look further to see that there is more to the kingdom of God than just being in us.
For I say unto you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come.(Luke 22:18)
Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.(John 18:36)
And they shall come from the east, and from the west, and from the north, and from the south, and shall sit down in the kingdom of God. And, behold, there are last which shall be first, and there are first which shall be last.(Luke 13:23-30)
Godís kingdom is everlasting.
And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.(Luke 1:31-33)
Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let's have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:(Heb 12:28)
Thy kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and thy dominion endureth throughout all generations.(Psalms 145:13)
Satanís counterfeit kingdom.
Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:(Eph 2:2)
Let's read what happens to his subjects.
But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.(Matt 8:12)
The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.(Matt 13:41-43)
Who decides who enters into Godís kingdom?
Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:(Col 1:12-13)
And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom.(Luke 23:42)
And so I solemnly urge you before God and before Christ Jesus--who will someday judge the living and the dead when he appears to set up his Kingdom--(2 Tim 4:1 Living)
Who can enter?
From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.(Matt 4:17)
Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.(John 3:3)
Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.(John 3:5)
Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.(Matt 5:3)
Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.(Matt 5:10)
Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.(Matt 7:21)
And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations:(Rev 2:26)
Do we need to bother with God's commands?
Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.(Matt 5:19)
And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.(Matt 19:17)
Be like a Child:
And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.(Matt 18:3-4) [Luke 18:17]
Who can NOT enter?
Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.(1 Cor 6:9-10)
Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.(Gal 5:19-21)
But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.(Eph 5:3-5)
Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.(1 Cor 15:50)
Is it easy?
Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.(Acts 14:22)
Which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that ye may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which ye also suffer:(2 Thess 1:5)
And again I say unto you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.(Matt 19:23-24)
For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.(Matt 5:20)
Then said one unto him, Lord, are there few that be saved? And he said unto them, Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able. When once the master of the house is risen up, and hath shut to the door, and ye begin to stand without, and to knock at the door, saying, Lord, Lord, open unto us; and he shall answer and say unto you, I know you not whence ye are: Then shall ye begin to say, We have eaten and drunk in thy presence, and thou hast taught in our streets But he shall say, I tell you, I know you not whence ye are; depart from me, all ye workers of iniquity There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth, when ye shall see Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, and all the prophets, in the kingdom of God, and you yourselves thrust out But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.(Matt 24:13)
It sounds hard to enter Gods Kingdom, does God want us in His kingdom?
Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom.(Luke 12:32)
Seek and preach His Kingdom.
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.(Matt 6:33) [Luke 12:31]
And he sent them to preach the kingdom of God, and to heal the sick.(Luke 9:2)
And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.(Matt 24:14)
God's kingdom is unified, no divisions. It will not contain several denominations like the churches of today.
And if a kingdom be divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand.(Mark 3:24)
Godís people will inherit His kingdom.
They will reign with Him on the earth!
And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey him.(Dan 7:27)
And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.(Rev 5:10)
When will this happen?
When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?(Acts 1:6)
And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.(Luke 21:20)
And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh. And he spake to them a parable; Behold the fig tree, and all the trees When they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand.(Luke 21:25-31)
Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, and thy spoil shall be divided in the midst of thee.(Zech 14:1)
And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south.(Zech 14:4)
And the LORD shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one LORD, and his name one.(Zech 14:9)
Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years.(Rev 20:6)
What happens during Godís kingdom?
I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom;(2 Tim 4:1)
For the LORD shall comfort Zion: he will comfort all her waste places; and he will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the LORD; joy and gladness shall be found therein, thanksgiving, and the voice of melody.(Isaiah 51:3)
And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven.(Matt 8:11)
And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let's go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.(Isaiah 2:3)
For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.(1 Cor 15:25-26)
And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.(Rev 21:1-8)
We do not know what all is in store.
But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.(1 Cor 2:9)
Pray for God's Kingdom:
Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.(Matt 6:10)
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