"What the Message of the Kingdom IS"
- The Message of God's Kingdom Is Good News!
The Greek word for "Good News" is "euaggelion," which means Gospel or "Good Message." The Hebrew equivalent for this word conveys the sense of victory over an enemy. When Jesus began His earthly ministry, He "proclaimed the Gospel of the Kingdom, and healed every kind of disease and sickness among the people (Matt. 4:23). The Good News of God's Kingdom declares victory over Satan's (and our own sin's) rule in our lives. It announces that a new government (God's Righteous Kingdom) of Hope has come to earth! This, indeed, was "Good News" because God's rule is kind, merciful and righteous rather than the cruel, uncompassionate and corrupt rule of men. When the King of God's Kingdom came to earth, He established HIS Church for us…not a legalistic religious hierarchy with no power or authority over satanic forces (Matt. 16:16-19). This is Good News!
- The Message of God's Kingdom Is More Than a Theological Concept…It's an Eternal Reality!
The Message of God's Kingdom is the present reality of God's eternal rule and dominion through the Lord Jesus Christ in the hearts of men and women (even boys and girls). In His sovereign power, He steps out of eternity into our world to assist those who trust and call upon Him (Ps. 46:1; Heb. 2:18). This eternal reality gives hope when all hope appears to be gone.
The message of God's Kingdom includes the message of eternal salvation. All who place their faith in the King's redemptive work are redeemed and adopted as God's sons (Gal. 4:4-5). Once for all, He dealt with the penalty of sin and restored believers to their divine destiny in Him (1 Pet. 3:18). Here's another reality: when the witness of God's righteous rule (His Kingdom) is complete, Christ will return and the end will come (Matt. 24:14). The final reality will come when He will renovate the world into God's dwelling place with all His glorified people (Rev. 21:1-5; 22:1-5).
3. The Message of God's Kingdom Is The "Drama" of Heaven That Came to the Earth
The Drama of the Kingdom is God's epic of the ages set on the backdrop of eternity. It's the drama of heaven and earth…of how God's glorious creation of peace, order and harmony was corrupted by an angelic insurrection led by Lucifer. It records the account of God casting Satan's evil kingdom and his angels to the earth (Rev. 12:1-9; Is. 14:12-15; Ezek. 28:12-17). Thus, the Message of the Kingdom gives understanding of the origin of evil on earth.
The drama of God's Kingdom continued with His assignment for Adam and Eve. In the midst of a planet corrupted by satanic "chaos" (so indicates the Hebrew word for "formless in Gen. 1:2), God embedded (planted) the Garden of God. In the Garden of Eden, God formed humankind and commissioned them to represent His authority and government (His Kingdom) in the earth. Their charge was to take dominion over everything on earth (Gen. 1:26-28), which obviously included evil that had been cast to the earth. Thus, the battle began…the war between good and evil on earth.
Tragically, Adam and Eve fell to Satan's strategy of deception (Gen. 3:1-24). They forfeited their divine destiny. Consequently, wickedness entered into men and women corrupting society such that "every intent of the thoughts of their hearts was only evil continually (Gen. 6:5). If humankind was to be rescued and restored to their destiny, God would have to personally do it.
4. The Message of the Kingdom of God Is the Story of Redemption and Restoration
The Message of the Kingdom is the true account of the King of God's Kingdom (His Son) leaving His Throne in Heaven; coming to the earth; clothing himself in flesh (Philip. 2:6-8) and announcing the presence of God's Kingdom on earth (Matt. 4:17). The King substituted Himself for fallen humankind (2 Cor. 5:21; Gal. 3:13), suffered, died and took the punishment in Hell that all people deserve (Rom. 8:3-4; Eph. 4:9; 1 Pet. 3:19). Then, the King rose from the dead; gave His righteousness to all who trust in His redemptive work (2 Cor. 5:21), restored His redeemed people to their destiny (Jer. 29:11-14; Joel 2:25; Rev. 12:11) and ascended back to the right hand of God where He now intercedes for the saints (Rom. 8:34).Without the reality of the Message of the Kingdom and the Redemptive work of the King, we would be eternally separated from God and our purpose would be hopelessly lost.
5. The Message of God's Kingdom Gives Understanding of How He Uses Your Witness…Right Where You Live
The Message of God's Kingdom reveals that the earth God's "stage," which He set in time and space, and upon which He plays out the Drama of the Ages. You and your family are on center stage in this great drama of your personal life. Everything that happens to you, good, bad or indifferent, is being viewed by an audience. When difficulties arise…your friends are watching! When you go through health challenges…your family is watching! When you get a promotion at work…your co-workers are watching to see how you handle it. When you fail…your enemies are watching to see if they can capitalize on your mistakes. But beyond the earthly audience is a different realm of spectators. Few people realize it, but their witness reaches into Heaven where both God and His angels are aware of all things that play out on the stage of their lives (Luke 15:10; Heb. 12:1-2). In addition, there's still another dimension of reality that our witness reaches. It's the realm of the Powers of Darkness! TheLord uses our witness on earth as a demonstration of the superiority of His righteous Kingdom over all other kingdoms ruled by the powers of evil (Job. 1:8-12; Zech. 3:1-5; Eph. 3:10; 6:12). Therefore, you must be constantly aware of your audience at all times…especially in your unguarded moments.
Also remember: your witness is NOT a sinless life…it's a Redeemed Life! Every time you repent when you sense sin working in your life, you become a witness of God's great redeeming love that draws you to Himself. This also becomes a witness against Satan, who will never repent. Whenever you choose God's way over your own way, you become a witness for all to see and follow your example. By understanding the Message of the Kingdom, you become an ambassador for Christ right where you live, work and enjoy life (2 Cor. 5:14-21).
6. The Message of the Kingdom of God Is the Revelation of the Finished Mystery of God
Finally, the Epic of God's Kingdom culminates with the "Finished Mystery of God"(Rev. 10:7). This is the ultimate finale of God's overarching plan to restore all that sin and evil has destroyed and to return His created universe back to Righteousness, Peace and Joy. To understand the Message of God's Kingdom is to discover how all things began, how they will end and the process by which God directs all events in history toward His ultimate purpose (Dan. 7:9-22). In other words, God brings all things "full circle." This is how it all happened and how all things will end:
- There was peace, harmony and joy in God's pre-sin creation of angels, humans and animals.
- Through freedom of will, an angelic insurrection divided God's kingdom. Satan and his evil angels were cast to the earth bringing with them the corruption of his evil kingdom.
- God created humankind as His Vice-Regents to represent His Kingdom in a corrupt world.
- Adam and Eve were deceived by Satan, failed in their mission and were helplessly trapped in sin.
- The King came to earth, became flesh, defeated Satan, redeemed humankind and restored humanity to their original purpose of representing His righteous rule in a corrupt world.
- The King established His Church and gave us His power and victory over Satanic influences.
- Christ's Church is His witnesses within the dark kingdoms of the world. Those who accept our witness and turn to the Lord will be saved, but those who reject it will be condemned.
- When our witness is complete, the King will return to conclude the Drama of heaven and earth.
- At long last, God will complete the "Full Circle" of His Drama. His created universe will be restored forever to righteousness, joy and peace once again.