By Donny Weimar
“Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17:21). God’s people have always been His kingdom. Before Israel asked for Saul the Benjamite to be their king, they lived under a theocracy with God as their king (1 Samuel 10:19). They should have known doing so would lead them away from God (Deuteronomy 17:14-15).
God has made His servants today to be a kingdom in Christ (Revelation 1:9). The kingdom of God has been in continuous growth in its glory since before the foundation of the world (Ephesians 1:4). Where you have a faithful obedient servant of God, you have a citizen in the kingdom of heaven. The old testament believers looked forward to the cross in hope of Messianic salvation. Therefore, they are citizens. We too look for a coming kingdom that shall be greater than the world has ever known. Allow me to explain. We immigrate into Christ when we obey the Gospel. Our kingdom citizenship begins then. The kingdom, though consummated in the book of Acts, will blossom into something grander on the great and awesome day of the Lord. Here’s the prooftext:
“Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: 11 For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 1:10-11).
Notice in verse eleven the phrase “an entrance shall be ministered.” We may anticipate that when the Lord comes to discern forever between the just and the unjust, the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior will be Heavenly. Our transition as citizens is from a spiritual glory that we are presently living now. We shall see an even greater glory.
Seeing then that we have such hope, we use great plainness of speech: 13 And not as Moses, which put a vail over his face, that the children of Israel could not stedfastly look to the end of that which is abolished: 14 But their minds were blinded: for until this day remaineth the same vail untaken away in the reading of the old testament; which vail is done away in Christ. 15 But even unto this day, when Moses is read, the vail is upon their heart. 16 Nevertheless when it shall turn to the Lord, the vail shall be taken away. 17 Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. 18 But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” (2 Corinthians 3:12-18)
This is a beautiful description of the church of the Lord. Since the kingdom church is glorious, each of her members is also, because each individual is in fellowship of the greater. My fellow believer you are gorgeous in the eyes of God. We will see the kingdom of heaven in its ultimate conceptualization.