The Kingdom: A Spiritual Dominion

And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he (Jesus) 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)

If we can believe anyone, surely we can believe the Lord Jesus Christ. Surely we can believe John the Baptist, Peter and Paul the apostles, and Daniel the Prophet. We may not believe a preacher, or a politician, or even the President -- especially the President, but surely we can believe the Son of God. Surely we can believe John the Baptist, of whom Jesus said, “Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater," Surely we can believe Peter who was the spokesman for the church on the day of Pentecost, and devoted his life to the faith. Surely we can believe Paul who wrote most of the New Testament letters, and was beheaded for his Testimony. Surely we can believe Daniel who received a revelation about the Kingdom that was SURE. Don’t take my word for it, just believe the Scriptures.

The Kingdom of Christ (of God, of Heaven) is a spiritual dominion and can only be “spiritually discerned," “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. But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God," – “But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.” (I Cor. 2:9-16)

In order to spiritually understand the Kingdom of Christ it is helpful to look at the Prophecy of WHEN it would begin. Daniel wrote, “And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever. Forasmuch as thou sawest that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it brake in pieces the iron, the brass, the clay, the silver, and the gold; the great God hath made known to the king what shall come to pass hereafter: and the dream is certain, and the interpretation thereof sure.” (read Dan. 2:31-45)  And in the days of these kings is referring to when the Roman Empire ruled the then know world at the time Christ, the stone cut out without hands, came and the God of heaven set up a kingdom.

I personally believe the kingdom of Christ, the Messiah, began when Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist (Matt. 3:1-2, 13-17, Luke 3:21-23). Jesus was born the Prince of Peace, predestined to sit upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom (Isa. 9:6-7) as the King of Kings (Matt. 2:2) which is what the title Christ or Messiah means (John 1:41, 49, 4:25). But his Baptism seems to be the time which fulfilled the words of Daniel "unto the Messiah the Prince" (Dan. 9:25). Mark tells us, Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, and saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: -” (read Mark 1:9-15). The words “the time is fulfilled” refers back to Daniel’s prophecies. The words “at hand” means near or nigh - or about to happen.

There are some who teach that The Kingdom of Christ is a future blessing for the Jewish Nation. They say it will be an earthly materialistic physical reign, in the physically restored Temple, in the natural city of Jerusalem, to be observed in literal time as man knows time, in fulfillment to the promise made the Jewish Nation with regards to the land of Canaan, and to king David, as recorded in Psalms 132:11 and Isa. 9:6-7, etc. etc.. However, Peter told “the house of Israel” on the day of Pentecost, that promise was fulfilled in the resurrection of Christ who IS now sitting at the right hand of the Majesty on High. (Acts 2:29-36)

The question IS, did Jesus know what he was talking about when he said "The time IS fulfilled, the kingdom of God IS at hand," The futurist say Jesus offered himself to the Jews as their King, but because he was rejected, God had to postpone the Kingdom, in order to fulfill the promise. Thus this man-made theory of a Postponed or future Millennial Kingdom, which according to time would have now been postponed two thousand years, is derived from man’s inability to spiritually discern the things of God. When man-made theories call into question the credibility of the words of The Son of God and great servants of God, we should be put on notice, and take heed, lest we be deceived.

In the New Testament the word "Kingdom" and the terms "Kingdom of Heaven" and "Kingdom of God" are often synonymous and interchangeable. Mark 1:14 says "Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God". Matthew 4:12 reads "Now when Jesus had heard that John was cast into prison, he departed into Galilee --". Matt. 4:17 reads "From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say Repent for the kingdom of heaven IS at hand". These are the exact same events. Matt 4:23 adds, "And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom". Obviously both Matthew and Mark are speaking of the same thing, but using different terms. The terms are interchanged in Matthew 19:23-24: Jesus says, "Verily I say unto you, that a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven. 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". It is obvious that Jesus is talking about the same kingdom, but as strange as it may be, some preachers go to College to get some professor to help them to misunderstand this.

The Gospel or Good News about The Kingdom was the first message the Jews heard after what is understood to be a four hundred year period of silence from God's prophets. That is the approximate time between the last writings of the Prophet Malachi in the Old Testament and the Message of John the Baptist, who was "the forerunner or Herald of the King", as he came on the scene preaching "Repent ye, for the kingdom of heaven IS at hand" (Matt 3:1-2). John the Baptist was ordained by God while yet in the womb to "go before him (Christ) in the spirit and power of Elias - to make ready a people prepared for the Lord" (Lk. 1:13-17). His message was clear "I am not the Christ -- I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord -- And seeing Jesus coming unto him, he said "BEHOLD THE LAMB OF GOD WHICH TAKETH AWAY THE SIN OF THE WORLD" (John 1:19-29). Are we to assume that John did not know what he was talking about when he said The kingdom of heaven IS at hand. John knew what IS meant!

The Gospel of the Kingdom was the first message Jesus preached after he began his earthly ministry. Jesus was not ignorant when he began his ministry. He knew he was to be about his Father’s business. After being baptized at about thirty years old, the Spirit of God descended upon him and his heavenly Father said "This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased." (Luke 3: 21-23)  Jesus was then tempted by the Devil "in all points like as we are, yet without sin."  He overcame Satan by the word of God. (Matt 4:1-11, Mark 1:12-13, Heb 4:15) He went into the synagogue and read a Messianic prophecy from Isaiah 61:1-2, and then announced “This day IS this scripture fulfilled in your ears.” (Luke 4:16-21)

God does not leave us in darkness to depend upon man's theories or ideas as to what is the Kingdom of God. God tells What the Kingdom of God IS! Jesus said "The kingdom of God cometh not with observation -- for behold the kingdom of God IS within you." (Luke 17:20-21) The word "observation" comes from the Greek word "parateresis" and means "inspection or ocular evidence". This teaches that the Kingdom of God can not be seen with the physical eye. Jesus said "BEHOLD the kingdom of God IS within you." Jesus said, “My kingdom IS not of this world," Are we to believe that Jesus did not know what the word IS meant?

When Jesus had by himself purged our sins, He sat down at the right hand of his Father on high, who said to the Son, “Thy throne, O God, is forever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy Kingdom” (Heb 1:8). Paul wrote, “For the kingdom of God IS NOT meat and drink (is not that which can be observed with the eyes or touched physically) but righteousness, and peace, and joy IN the Holy Ghost.” (Rom. 14:17) The kingdom of Christ IS His Spiritual Domain.