The Kingdom of Heaven
June 22, 2021
At that time the disciples came to Jesus and said, "Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?" (Matthew 18:1).
When the Bible speaks of the Kingdom of Heaven, the Kingdom of God, the Kingdom of Christ, etc., it is referring to that place where the Lord reigns as the supreme ruler. In the U.S. we are not as familiar with the term ‘kingdom’ as our cousins in England or other European nations. We are a Republic - a nation in which the ultimate power is held by the people and their elected representatives, including an elected president.
In this nation no one person is the supreme leader, though there are those who would have us think they are. But in the Kingdom of Heaven, God the Father alone is the supreme ruler and Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit are co-regent with Him. This may sound strange to some, but Scripture bears this out.
For since by a man came death, by a man also came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive. But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, after that those who are Christ's at His coming, then comes the end, when He hands over the kingdom to the God and Father, when He has abolished all rule and all authority and power. For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet. The last enemy that will be abolished is death. For “He has put all things in subjection under His feet.” But when He says, “All things are put in subjection,” it is evident that He is excepted who put all things in subjection to Him. When all things are subjected to Him, then the Son Himself also will be subjected to the One who subjected all things to Him, so that God may be all in all (1 Corinthians 15:21-28).
However, at this point in God’s plan for the ages, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is Lord of heaven and earth. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus “every knee will bow,” of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Philippians 2:8-11).
For the Christian, the Kingdom of God resides within us and Jesus, through His Holy Spirit, is the Lord who reigns within us to bring honor and glory to God the Father. The kingdom of God is not coming with signs to be observed; nor will they say, “Look, here it is!” or, “There it is!” For behold, the kingdom of God is in your midst (entos: within you)" (Luke 17:20-21).
“Thank You, Lord, for revealing to us Your Kingdom and power and glory. Thank You, Lord Jesus, for reigning in our lives through the presence of Your Holy Spirit. May we continually subject ourselves to Your authority so that others may see You in us. To Your honor and glory I ask, Amen.”