The Kingdom of God Today - 1


Looking back at Genesis chapters one to three it's quite easy to realise that Adam and Eve began life in the Kingdom of God. They were the first to experience His kingship. But they rejected their Creator's rule, therefore rejecting Him, and went their own way. From then on the Kingdom of God was beyond human reach, until Jesus came. Though some did come near to it, King David being the prime Old Testament example.

However, there was one who was a Scribe at the time when Jesus was among the people preaching His Good News of the Kingdom. Matthew 12'28-34 explains:

Then one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, perceiving that He had answered them well, asked Him, “Which is the first commandment of all?”
Jesus answered him, “The first of all the commandments is: ‘Hear, O Israel, the LORD our God, the Lord is one. ‘And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ This is the first commandment.
“And the second, like it, is this: ‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
So the scribe said to Him, “Well said, Teacher. You have spoken the truth, for there is one God, and there is no other but He.
“And to love Him with all the heart, with all the understanding, with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love one’s neighbour as oneself, is more than all the whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.”
Now when Jesus saw that he answered wisely, He said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.

As the Scribe said, the Kingdom of God is all about loving the Father and doing His will and loving one's neighbour as oneself. But he could only be near to it. In another conversation, with a Pharisee this time, Jesus laid out the basics for an even much closer relationship with the Kingdom of God. John explains:

There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews.
This man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.”
Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
Nicodemus said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?”
Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.
“That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
“Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’
“The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”
Nicodemus answered and said to Him, “How can these things be?”
Jesus answered and said to him, “Are you the teacher of Israel, and do not know these things?" (John 3'1-10).

However, Nicodemus had hardly spoken when Jesus told him something he had not asked for: “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God,” John 3'3. That must mean that only a person who is born again can see the kingdom of God.

He was confused as to how anyone could be born a second time. But Jesus went further, saying: “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God," John 3'5.

But what the Lord is saying to Nicodemus actually refers to a future time following Pentecost when those who have repented and have received Christ are born again of the Holy Spirit. And that's when it's crucial for Believers to understand, that at the moment they were born again three primary things happened. They were:

1. Placed into the Body of Christ ("... by one Spirit we were all immersed into one body - whether Jews or Greeks" (1 Corinthians 12'13).

2. Delivered from the power of darkness (Colossians 1'13).

3. Placed into the Kingdom of the Son of the Father's love ("... has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love," (Colossians 1'13).

So now true Believers always are: born of the Holy Spirit, members of the Body of Christ, free from the powers of darkness and standing in the Kingdom of Jesus, the Son of our Father's love. That means, every Believer stands in the same spiritual place in relation to the Father that Jesus stood in while He was on earth; and therefore joint-heirs with Him.

Consequently, Believers have the ability to see the Father's Kingdom, enter it and live in it. But using that ability involves looking. Jesus said, "seek and you will find". And looking is a choice because "the kingdom of God is righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. And whoever serves Christ in these things is acceptable to God and approved by men," Romans 14'17-18.


Next: And Living It.