July 30, 2017 “The Kingdom of God is within you!”

“The Kingdom of God is within you!”

While prayerfully considering some of Jesus’ parables and teachings, to discover views of the Kingdom of Heaven (Matthew 5.3 & 10, 13.31-33, 44-45; 18.3; 19.23-24; 20.1-16) , I began to realize that He was using descriptive events from His daily walk on earth. This led me to the contemplation of Matthew 6.10 & 33 about the importance of the Kingdom to our success. This led me back to John the Baptist’s proclamation about the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand (Matthew 3.2), which became Jesus’ proclamation as well (Matthew 4.17). God told John what to say (Luke 3.2), and the Word that took on flesh came to fulfill it (John 1.14). So, what did Jesus’ appearance have to do with the Kingdom of Heaven? Is the name Jesus synonymous with the term Kingdom of Heaven? And, is the Kingdom of Heaven the Kingdom of God? Why are both used in the Gospels?

MacArthur Study Bible Note regarding the Kingdom of Heaven/God:

“This is an expression unique to Matthew’s Gospel. Matthew uses the word “heaven” as a euphemism for God’s name—to accommodate his Jewish readers’ sensitivities (cf. Matt. 23:22). Throughout the rest of Scripture, the kingdom is called “the kingdom of God.” Both expressions refer to the sphere of God’s dominion over those who belong to him. The kingdom is now manifest in heaven’s spiritual rule over the hearts of believers (Luke 17:21); and one day it will be established in a literal earthly kingdom (Rev. 20:4–6). is at hand. In one sense the kingdom is a present reality, but in its fullest sense it awaits a yet-future fulfillment.” (my underline)

John the Baptist baptized in the Jordan River because God sent him to announce the Messiah (Luke 3.2; Isaiah 40.3-5). Jesus proclaimed the same message, ‘repent for the kingdom of Heaven is at hand’ after emerging from the wilderness days with the Holy Spirit (Matthew 4.1-17), and taught His disciples to do the same before they ministered the kingdom among the people (Matthew 6.10 & 33, 10.7-8; Luke 10.1-19). He taught us to pray that the kingdom come on earth so that the will of God could be done on earth as it is in Heaven.

Jesus was God, the Word that became flesh (John 1.1-14); Immanuel prophesied by God (Isaiah 7.14). When He departed earth for the throne of God (Psalm 110.1-2), He said all authority in Heaven and on Earth was His (Matthew 28.18-20). Thus, He commanded us to baptize the nations/peoples INTO His name and to disciple their understanding. Thus, we were baptized and to baptize into His authority also (Luke 10.17-19; John 17.18). While on earth, we are to take the keys of the Kingdom (Matthew 16.19), that we understand through discipleship, and bind on earth whatever is already bound from Heaven and loose on earth whatever is already loosed in Heaven, just as Jesus did (Acts 10.38; 1 John 3.8b). He promised to be with us in doing this, His, work (Mark 16.20).

Discipleship into God’s good works (Ephesians 2.10) is accomplished through the protocol of Ephesians 3.14-19, producing 4.13 maturity, by which we exclaim 3.20-21! In Luke 17.21, Jesus says that the Kingdom of God is within us, alluding to His body and blood ingested (John 6.53-58) and the gift of the Holy Spirit as guarantee (Ephesians 1.13-14). It is His name, also, that is within believers as a summation of the Law and Prophets (Matthew 22.37-40; 5.17 {Romans 10.4; Galatians 3.24}). His name, Jesus, is His presence within believers to do the work (Mark 16.20) and is the power by which this work is accomplished (Philippians 2.9-11, 12-13). Apostle Paul concludes this in Colossians 1.27 and illustrates Jesus’ presence and power in his usual methodology, in 1 Corinthians 2.4-5; i.e., the work of the Holy Spirit.

This work (Ephesians 2.10; Acts 10.38; 1 John 3.8b) evidences the Kingdom of God on earth, just as Jesus instructed (Matthew 10.7-8). So, satan’s deceptions and destructive schemes are to be expelled from earth just as they are and will forever be bound from Heaven (Revelation 21.8). Consequently, the kingdom of God becomes the kingdom of the earth (Revelation 11.15), when the will of God is carried out faithfully by Christians.

The Kingdom is in the name Jesus, which is the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (John 17.12 ESV; Hebrews 13.8)! Thus, John the Baptist and Jesus, both, proclaimed that the “Kingdom of Heaven IS at hand” with the arrival of Jesus to minister (my emphasis to Matthew 3.2 & 4.17). The Kingdom is at hand wherever believers are present and obedient to do the Holy Spirit’s work.

As a result, we can see some of the future Heaven while we live on earth…just as God intended it should be. Easton’s Bible Dictionary defines the Kingdom of Heaven/God as: “the blessings and advantages of all kinds that flow from [God’s] rule.” It is as MacArthur writes: a present reality whose fullness awaits a future fulfillment.

Praise God!!! Copyright © by Maurice L. Painter, 2017. www.sozoclass.com

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