(Original radio broadcast from April 17,1998)
Whenever the subject of the Kingdom of God is discussed, one question will usually surface eventually. It is the question of “When?”
Over the centuries, numerous theories have accumulated, and each one has seen some popularity, according to the mood and desires of the times. Many books are being sold every day which promise to give the reader some inside information concerning the end times and the coming of God’s Kingdom. They are read by both sinner and saint alike, for they address universal concerns and arouse the curiosity of many.
The Pharisees, and even His disciples posed the question of “When” to Jesus. But it is interesting to consider His responses in each instance. In neither case did He give them a specific time. To the Pharisees He declared the location of the Kingdom, and to the disciples, clear direction was given that would lead to Kingdom activity.
If any allusion to time was given, it was always in the present tense. While Jesus consistently held forth the futuristic aspects of God’s reign of righteousness, peace and joy in the earth, no one could dispute where His emphasis lay.
There was always an immediacy in Jesus’ teaching and practice. “The Kingdom of heaven is at hand,” was His theme! How are we to respond to this? Does it not flush away our mythology — and our excuses as well?
Is not NOW the time to hear His Voice and respond in Loving obedience? Will we adore Him with our lips, calling Him “Lord, Lord,” but fail to simply do those things which He commands?
Has our eschatology, that is, our beliefs concerning the last days, and our traditions concerning Him, made His commands to us ineffectual? Is not today the day to give our lives and our very souls to the fulfillment of His will in the earth?
Cannot He take care of the final outcome of all history, while we just simply live, move, and have our being in Him? And in this abiding in His presence, are there not important actions that must necessarily follow?
Think of all the action verbs that Jesus employed! “Go, Do, shine, preach, teach, feed, love, heal, forgive!” Could it be that these very words can take us into Kingdom reality? Could these very actions themselves bring heavenly life into this sin-cursed world?
Or would we choose a complicated system of Biblical interpretation over the simplicity of knowing, loving and serving our Lovely Lord and King? Can we not trust Him to protect us in these fearful and terrible times, as we choose to follow Him?
But what of the future? How are we to prepare for it? Is it not important for us to have detailed information concerning the end times? Should we not be warning others of the dreadful times to come?
Truly these are frightening times. Children are killing children, and even normal family love is difficult to find. Every event that inspires optimism is countered by signs of decline and decay. Surely, every child of God should look to discern the signs of the times.
But from where does our hope spring forth? Is it from our knowledge of supposed predictions? Or is it from the Person of Jesus Christ Himself? The Name of the Lord is a strong tower! The righteous run into it and are safe!
But some attempt to draw our confidence towards them or towards their ability to understand and explain complex and questionable interpretations of Biblical prophesy. May I declare unto you today that the small of intellect, the young and even uninformed can often find the greater security — for they can have the Lord Jesus Christ Himself! All can know Him! From the least unto the greatest! All can learn to hear His Voice, and respond to it! All can run into His loving arms for peace and true security!
Surely we can and will help one another to know the reality of the Saviour, and my hope is that this message and ministry is a part of just that. For knowing Him more intimately will lead to greater understanding and also greater power in Him to face the challenges of the times.
As we follow on to know the Lord — we shall KNOW!
Hosea 6:3: “Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the LORD: his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth.”
Jesus is coming! And He is coming unto us as the rain!
Hosea 10:12:” Sow to yourselves in righteousness, reap in mercy; break up your fallow ground: for it is time to seek the LORD, till he come and rain righteousness upon you.”
Could I encourage us all to seek the Lord? Instead of spending all of our time worrying about the future, or sorting through all of the controversies concerning the end times, why not just seek the Face of Jesus? Learn to walk with Him, talk with Him, become a real fanatic! Fall head over heels in Love with Him!
Would not this be time well spent? And what will be the result? Perhaps you will rediscover the Faith that was once and for all delivered unto the saints! Perhaps you will find true righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Ghost! This is the Kingdom of God! Perhaps you will become translated out of the kingdom of darkness and into His kingdom of light! Maybe you will even come to truly know Him as Lord of all, and begin living in the expectancy of His ever expanding Kingdom!
Then you will find yourself spontaneously doing all the things that you have already known were right. Loving the brethren. Helping the helpless. Forgiving those who hurt you, and leading others to know the Love of God for themselves!
This is the Kingdom of God! Live in it NOW! Worship Him as Lord NOW! Watch the gates of hell fall — NOW!
Let us leave the course of history in the hands of our sovereign God. And let us trust Him to lead us and give us the power to obey Him today.
Yes, there is a future hope. Even the Creation itself senses it:
Rom 8:19-21: “The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed. For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God.”
Christ Jesus must reign until all enemies are put under His feet, the Rock cut out of the mountain is growing, and this leaven is continuing to leaven society. He has already begun His righteous reign in us, and through our devotion and obedience nations will come to the light and kings to the brightness of our rising!
It is time for us to rise and shine, for the glory of the Lord is risen upon us! As citizens of heaven and the age to come, we are becoming living examples of the Kingdom of God to our generation!
Rom 12:1-2: “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”
Many reference books will confirm the fact that the word which is translated “world” here in the KJV, is a Greek word which refers to a period of time, or “an age.” We are not to conform to the thinking of this age, for we are actually dwelling in the Kingdom age now!
Gal 1:3-5: “Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ, Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world (or age), according to the will of God and our Father: To whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.”
Col 1:12-14: “Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet (or qualified us) 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: In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:”
These and many other passages bear witness to the truth of our present dwelling place is in Christ! Lord open our eyes to see you, and enlighten our minds to the revelation that you have raised us up together, to be seated in heavenly places in you! And as we learn to experience you in our daily lives, we are also living in your heavenly Kingdom now!
Yes, there is a glorious age to come! It is the age when the kingdoms of this world become the Kingdoms of our Lord, and of His Christ, and He shall reign for ever and ever! (Rev 11:15)
But you and I are to bear witness to the reality of His reign today! His army is advancing today, and we are on the winning side!
Lord, you are well aware of our need for patience in these troubled and doubtful days. Often it seems to us as though your are very distant, and your coming so long delayed. Grant us the courage and faith to walk in obedience to your commands. Increase our awareness of you and your imminent universal reign over this earth.
All of humanity needs to see you, but so do we. Give us a fresh vision of your glory, and a renewed visitation of the power of your Holy Spirit in our lives. Only then can we fulfill your Hearts desire for our lives.
In Jesus Name,
May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.