Jim Humphrey Consulting


Vol 4, No 28 Vol 4, No 30

God's Kingdoms

Volume 4, Number 29
Created Date: December 31, 2017
Posted Date: December 31, 2017

“Believe” in Acts: Part 12: God’s Kingdom/s:

God the Father “... 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:” Colossians 1:13 & 1413 Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son:

14 In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:

. The Apostle Paul wrote this blessed assurance to believers almost 2000 years ago and it still applies. Today we will compare the Kingdom of His Dear Son with others mentioned in the New Testament (NT), i.e., The Kingdoms of Heaven, of God, of David and of Christ.

A Kingdom is an area or sphere where a “King” has “dominion,” which means sovereignty or control. So, the Kingdoms of His Dear Son, of Heaven, of God, of David and of Christ are those areas or spheres where God is sovereign. First, as noted in past Faith Studies, the term “Kingdom of Heaven” is found only in the Gospel of Matthew where it occurs 33 times, which is consistent with the purpose of Matthew, which presents Jesus Christ as King of Israel/Jews, Matthew 2:1 & 21 Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,

2 Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.

, 6; 21: 5; 27:11. Israel was promised this Kingdom throughout the Old Testament (OT). God promised Israel they will be a Kingdom of Priests and during the coming 1000-year reign of Christ and on into the new earth to follow, each and every Jew will be a priest to the entire world’s population, Exodus 19:66 And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel.

. God promised that the King would come out of David’s seed, and His Kingdom will be established forever, 2 Samuel 7:12 - 1612 And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom.

13 He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever.

14 I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men:

15 But my mercy shall not depart away from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away before thee.

16 And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever.

12 And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom.

13 He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever.

14 I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men:

15 But my mercy shall not depart away from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away before thee.

16 And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever.

; that He would come out of Bethlehem, Micah 5:22 But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.

; that He will rule as everlasting King from Mount Zion (in Jerusalem), Psalms 2:6 - 76 Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion.

7 I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.

; the government will be on His shoulders, Isiah 9:6 - 7; His dominion and glory will be a kingdom where all people, nations, and languages will serve Him, it will be everlasting, never to pass away or be destroyed, Daniel 7:1313 I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him.

-14. Jesus Christ will defeat Israel’s enemies, undo Israel’s affliction and gather them to Jerusalem and praise their name in all the earth, Zephaniah 3:1414 Sing, O daughter of Zion; shout, O Israel; be glad and rejoice with all the heart, O daughter of Jerusalem.

-20. The Kingdom of Heaven has a place for blessings to Gentiles, but Gentiles are secondary and will receive their blessings through Israel as we read that the nations of the earth will pay homage to Israel with their goods and their worship of the King and Lord of Hosts and those who fail to do so will suffer loss, Zachariah 14:9 - 21.

During His earthly ministry, Jesus Christ’s Apostles/Disciples believed He was the promised King of Israel Who came out of the seed of David and will someday take His place with dominion over the earth, Matthew 16:15 - 1915 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?

16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.

17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.

18 And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

19 And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

; John 1:4949 Nathanael answered and saith unto him, Rabbi, thou art the Son of God; thou art the King of Israel.

; 6:69, etc. The promised Kingdom of Heaven is synonymous with “the Kingdom of David,” although this title appears only once in the NT, Mark 11:1010 Blessed be the kingdom of our father David, that cometh in the name of the Lord: Hosanna in the highest.

. However, many passages throughout the NT refer to the fact that Jesus was born from the seed of David, Matthew 1:66 And Jesse begat David the king; and David the king begat Solomon of her that had been the wife of Urias;

, 17, 20; 9:27; Romans 1:33 Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh;

, etc. And one of the last verses in the Bible proclaims: “I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.” Revelation 22:1616 I Jesus have sent mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.

. This is in perfect harmony with God’s promise to David thousands of years ago that a King would come out of his seed, and His Kingdom will be established forever, 2 Samuel 7:12 - 16

The Kingdom of Heaven/David refers specifically to Jesus Christ’s promised Kingdom for Israel on earth. Just before The Lord Jesus Christ ascended into heaven from the Mount of Olives, His Apostles asked when He would restore the Kingdom to Israel, Acts 1:66 When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?

“And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.” Acts 1:77 And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.

. His Kingdom will come as prophesied: “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.” Zechariah 14:44 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.

. This passage corresponds perfectly with what the two men in white clothes told the Disciples at the time Christ ascended into heaven from the Mount of Olives: “... Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.” Acts 1:1111 Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.

. At the end of the yet future 7-year Tribulation period Jesus described in Matthew 24:15 - 2815 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)

16 Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:

17 Let him which is on the housetop not come down to take any thing out of his house:

18 Neither let him which is in the field return back to take his clothes.

19 And woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!

20 But pray ye that your flight be not in the winter, neither on the sabbath day:

21 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.

22 And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened.

23 Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not.

24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.

25 Behold, I have told you before.

26 Wherefore if they shall say unto you, Behold, he is in the desert; go not forth: behold, he is in the secret chambers; believe it not.

27 For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

28 For wheresoever the carcase is, there will the eagles be gathered together.

, He will return to Israel on the Mount of Olives to establish His Kingdom of Heaven on earth, Matthew 24:29 - 3129 Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:

30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

31 And he shall send his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

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The Kingdom of Heaven/David is included within the broader term “The Kingdom of God.” I counted 76 times the term “Kingdom of God” is used in 15 books of the NT: 4 in Matthew; 15 in Mark; 33 in Luke; 2 in John; 7 in Acts; a total of 10 times in 7 Pauline epistles; once each in Hebrews and James and twice in Revelation. It is clear that the Kingdom of Heaven is synonymous and included within the Kingdom of God throughout the Gospels, in the first 2 times it is used in Acts and in Hebrews, James and Revelation. But today it is very important to understand exactly what happened during Paul and Barnabas’ first missionary journey, as recorded in the 13th and 14th chapters of Acts because that is when “the door of faith was opened to Gentiles,” providing access to the Kingdom of God. Many today who identify as “Christians” fail to understand this significance because they don’t understand that prior to the Apostle Paul, we Gentiles “were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world,” Ephesians 2:1212 That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world:

b. Simply put, prior to the point in history documented in Acts 13 & 14, Gentiles went to Hell unless they became proselytes to the Jewish Religion. But since then we thank God because “... now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ” Ephesians 2:1313 But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.

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Since Acts 13 & 14, the Kingdom of God has encompassed more than the Kingdom of Heaven/David. The Kingdom of God includes the Church, which is the Body of Christ, made up of Jews and Gentiles. But, the Body of Christ is not part of the Kingdom of Heaven/David. It is clear that the Body of Christ was a secret not known to anyone until God revealed it to the Apostle Paul, Romans 16:25 & 2625 Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began,

26 But now is made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith:

; Ephesians 3:11 For this cause I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for you Gentiles,

-11. Paul teaches that believers for the past almost 2000 years right up to today are baptized by the Holy Spirit into the Body of Christ during this age of Grace, 1 Corinthians 12:1313 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

. And we in the Body of Christ do not await Christ’s return to earth on the Mount of Olives to establish His Kingdom on earth. We will be taken up to meet The Lord Jesus Christ in the air and to Heaven prior to the Tribulation period because we are not appointed to the wrath of the Tribulation, 1 Thessalonians 4:1313 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.

-18 and 1 Corinthians 15:5151 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,

-54. Paul wrote: “Notwithstanding the Lord stood with me, and strengthened me; that by me the preaching might be fully known, and that all the Gentiles might hear: and I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion. And the Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom: to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.” 2 Timothy 4:11 I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom;

7 & 1817 Notwithstanding the Lord stood with me, and strengthened me; that by me the preaching might be fully known, and that all the Gentiles might hear: and I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion.

18 And the Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom: to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

. We, along with Paul, look forward that heavenly Kingdom, not to be confused with the Kingdom of Heaven on earth. Our hope today, that is, our earnest expectation is eternal life in heaven, 1 Corinthians 15:47 - 4947 The first man is of the earth, earthy; the second man is the Lord from heaven.

48 As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy: and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly.

49 And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly.

; 2 Corinthians 5:1 & 21 For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.

2 For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven:

; Ephesians 1:33 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:

; 2:6 & 7; Philippians 3:2020 For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:

; Colossians 1:55 For the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel;

; 1 Thessalonians 1:1010 And to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.

; 4:16 & 17.

God has not promised us what He promised Israel, to be Priests in His Kingdom on earth. Ours is a different calling and promise for God “ ... hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.” Ephesians 2:6 & 76 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:

7 That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.

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The Apostle Paul refers to Members of the Body of Christ being in the Kingdom of God a number of times. He writes:

•that “the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.” Romans 14:1717 For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.

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•“the kingdom of God is not in word, but in power.” 1 Corinthians 4:2020 For the kingdom of God is not in word, but in power.

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•“... the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.” 1 Corinthians 6:9 & 109 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,

10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

, see also Galatians 5:19 - 2119 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness,

20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,

21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

and Ephesians 5:55 For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.

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•“Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power.” 1 Corinthians 15:2424 Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power.

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•That we, along with the Thessalonians “ ... would walk worthy of God, who hath called you (we believers) unto his kingdom and glory.” 1 Thessalonians 2:11 & 1211 As ye know how we exhorted and comforted and charged every one of you, as a father doth his children,

12 That ye would walk worthy of God, who hath called you unto his kingdom and glory.

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•The Lord Jesus Christ “... shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom,” 2 Timothy 4:1,

•Paul had Jews who were fellow workers unto the Kingdom of God, Colossians 4:1111 And Jesus, which is called Justus, who are of the circumcision. These only are my fellowworkers unto the kingdom of God, which have been a comfort unto me.

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•We look forward to the rapture: “Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption. Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.” 1 Corinthians 15:50 - 5350 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.

51 Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,

52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.

53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.

. See also 1 Thessalonians 4:13 - 1813 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.

14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.

15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.

16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:

17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

18 Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

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However, even though Members of the Body of Christ will not go through the Tribulation foretold in the OT, spoken of by Jesus during his ministry and described in Revelation, that does not mean we may not suffer persecution. Contrary to what some “name it and claim it” evangelists teach, we have been told “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.” 2 Timothy 3:1212 Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.

. This is what Paul and Barnabas told the believers in Lystra, Iconium and Antioch “... exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.” Acts 14:2222 Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.

. See also 2 Thessalonians 1:55 Which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that ye may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which ye also suffer:

. Believers for the last 2000 years have been assured that “The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.” Romans 8:16 - 1816 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:

17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

18 For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.

. “Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God. 2 Timothy 1:88 Be not thou therefore ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me his prisoner: but be thou partaker of the afflictions of the gospel according to the power of God;

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Jim Humphrey
Vol 4, No 28 Vol 4, No 30