THE KINGDOM OF GOD & THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN

THE KINGDOM OF GOD & THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN

March 5, 2021 0 By admin

The following comments are in reply to some questions concerning the subject of the “kingdoms” found in the New Testament. While this issue may be of some interest to genuine Bible believers (and might be of some help in “rightly dividing the word of truth”), it is not a principle (or major) doctrine that is necessary for Christian fellowship (Please See: “THE BIBLICAL BASIS OF OUR FELLOWSHIP” – Parts I, II, III). I can fellowship with brethren who disagree with me on this doctrine as long as they do not make it a bone of contention between us.

The subject of the “kingdom” is one of the major themes (possibly the main theme) of the Bible. Alongside of the Grace of God, the subject of the “kingdom” is central in God’s plan for the ages; and its importance should never be underestimated. The study of the subject of the “kingdom” (or “kingdoms”) in the Holy Scriptures is also one of the most difficult of all the studies in the Bible to undertake and the undertaking of such a study should be done with caution and carefulness because a spiritual “mystery” [Matthew 13:11; Mark 4:11; Luke 8:10] is involved; which simply means that the understanding of the subject must come from God Himself and not from some school, or some commentator, or some book – other than the Holy Bible.

In regards to the subject of “kingdoms” in the Bible, the Scriptures clearly reveal WHERE “the kingdoms of the world” are – i.e. in “the world”; and they plainly define WHAT they are – i.e. the kingdoms: “of men”; “of nations”; and “of the heathen”, etc.

And although the Bible declares “the kingdom of God” to be a “mystery”; the Scriptures clearly state, without a doubt, WHERE “the kingdom of God” is – i.e. in the “third Heaven” and within each and every born again child of God, and definitely “NOT OF THIS WORLD”; and a reading of the 69 verses in the New Testament regarding WHAT “the kingdom of God” is reveals much about its nature – i.e. “the kingdom of God”: “cometh not with observation”; “is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost”; “is not in word, but in power”; “flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God”; etc. Bible believers recognize that no one can know all there is to know about the nature of “the kingdom of God” simply because it is one of “the mysteries of God”.

But just exactly WHAT is “the kingdom of heaven”; and WHERE and HOW does “the kingdom of heaven” FIT into the scheme of things?

SOME QUESTIONS CONCERNING THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN

Which “heaven” is being spoken of in the phrase “the kingdom of heaven”?

  1. The “heaven” wherein the birds fly {i.e. our atmosphere}?

[Deuteronomy 30:4; Job 35:11; Genesis 27:28; Deuteronomy 11:11; 2Samuel 21:10; Jeremiah 49:36; Ezekiel 31:6]

  1. The “heaven” wherein resides the Sun the Moon and the Stars (the Universe)?

[Deuteronomy 4:19; Isaiah 13:10; Genesis 26:4; Exodus 32:23; Deuteronomy 1:10; 10:22; Jeremiah 8:2]

  1. The “third heaven” spoken of by the Apostle Paul wherein Almighty God resides? {HEAVEN}

[2Corinthians 12:2; Job 22:12]

  1. Is “the kingdom of heaven” equal to, or the same as, “all the kingdoms of the world”?
  2. Are “all the kingdoms of the world” a part “the kingdom of heaven”? Or is “the kingdom of heaven” a part of “all the kingdoms of the world”?
  3. Is “the kingdom of heaven” different (i.e. separate) from “all the kingdoms of the world”?
  4. Is “the kingdom of heaven” the same as “the kingdom of God”?
  5. Is “the kingdom of heaven” a part of the “the kingdom of God”?
  6. Are “the kingdom of heaven” and “the kingdom of God” different (i.e. separate) from each other?

As you can see this subject is extremely complex; and the answers to these questions must come solely from Scripture and not from the commentators.

{NOTICE: When dealing with the subject of the “kingdom” in the Holy Scriptures most Bible commentators engage in a great deal of speculation, hypothesis, and theories as they attempt to figure out a workable solution to the issue that will make some kind of sense to them.}

The first mention of the word “kingdom” in the Holy Bible is found in Genesis 10:8-10 which follows the Great Flood and the establishment of human government amongst men [Genesis 9:5-6].

{It should be noted that the lawful taking of a man’s life (for legitimate offenses – Genesis 9:5-6) by other men represents the ultimate authority of government, upon which all other authority in regards to life, liberty, and property rests.}

FIRST MENTION OF A KINGDOM IN SCRIPTURE

Genesis 10:8 And Cush begat Nimrod: he began to be a mighty one in the earth.
9 He was a mighty hunter before the LORD: wherefore it is said, Even as Nimrod the mighty hunter before the LORD.
10 And the beginning of his kingdom was Babel, and Erech, and Accad, and Calneh, in the land of Shinar.

This is the first recorded “kingdom” in the Scriptures (NOTE: There is no mention of a “kingdom” before the Flood) and it is typical of all of the “kingdoms of the world” [Isaiah 23:17; Jeremiah 25:26; Matthew 4:8; Luke 4:5] that have followed it right up to the present day (i.e. Assyria, Egypt, Babylon, Persia, Greece, Rome, etc., etc., etc.). Since the first mention of a kingdom in the Bible [Genesis 10:8-10], historically all of the kingdoms of the world which have followed operate with God’s permission and consent but not necessarily with His approval or endorsement. In other words these “kingdoms” have been allowed or permitted to exist as long as they serve God’s purpose, and they are brought down when they cease to do so.