What is the Kingdom of Heaven? What is the Kingdom of God? Are we going to heaven or is heaven coming to this earth? Many do not know the answer!
The Bible supposedly tells us what we need to know for eternal life. Yet, few people read it! Even fewer people understand it!
What is a “kingdom”? The first definition in the American Heritage Dictionary is “A political or territorial unit ruled by a sovereign.” Implicitly or explicitly we see we need 4 things: 1. A king, 2. Subjects, 3. Land or territory and 4. Laws to govern said territory.
Some say “The Kingdom of God is in your hearts.” What Bible verse is that? Why spiritualize away the Kingdom when Jesus clearly said He would return? Why would Jesus promise to return if not to establish His Kingdom?
In Daniel 2, King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon had a dream that disturbed him. Daniel was able to interpret the dream as different kingdoms throughout the history of the world, starting with Babylon and finishing with the second coming of Christ. These kingdoms were obviously on the earth.
And whereas thou sawest iron mixed with miry clay [the toes of the statue, representing the final kingdom on the earth], they shall mingle themselves with the seed of men: but they shall not cleave one to another, even as iron is not mixed with clay.
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 [on the earth], 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.
~ Da 2:43-45
God will set up this kingdom and establish it on the earth!
Then shall the LORD go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle.
And his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley; and half of the mountain shall remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south.
…And the LORD shall be king over all the earth: in that day shall there be one LORD, and his name one.
~ Zec 14:3-4, 9
The NT points to the Kingdom being established on the earth as well. We are all familiar with the model prayer, sometimes titled “The Lord’s Prayer” in Bibles. What does “Thy Kingdom come” mean? It is coming to the earth. Where will the saints be? In the Kingdom that is coming to the earth.
And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.
~ Rev 5:10
Jesus promised that He would prepare a place for us and return.
In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.
~ Jn 14:2-3
If Jesus returns to the earth, then where is the “wher I am”? Obviously, He has returned to the earth to fulfill the OT prophecies about establishing God’s Kingdom here on earth.
Did Jesus contradict Himself in the Beatitudes?
Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
…Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
~ Mt 5:3, 5
The above shows that that “Kingdom of Heaven” is to be on earth!
Matthew is the only Gospel writer who uses the term “Kingdom of Heaven”. Is this a contradiction to the others who use the term “Kingdom of God”? Of course not! The Kingdom is ruled by God. God is not the Kingdom, and the Kingdom is not in God. Likewise, the Kingdom of Heaven just means it is ruled from God’s Throne in Heaven. Heaven is not the entire Kingdom, and the Kingdom is not solely in Heaven. In a similar way, the Empire of Rome was ruled from Rome, but it wasn’t solely in Rome.
No, Revelation shows that even the Throne of God is coming to earth!
And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.
And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them
[where? On earth!], and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.
~ Rev 21:1-3
God speed that day!