2 – The Spiritual Kingdom

Through the articles that have been written on this blog on the Jewish Prophets of Israel, the discussion of the future kingdom of Israel has been an important subject this is of key importance to Jews. This article brings a Christian perspective into the teaching of the prophecies of the Kingdom. The truth of the Jewish prophets is truth; this article will show nothing but respect for the writings of the Jewish prophets. Jews are taught that they are God’s chosen people (Deuteronomy 7:6); this author agrees.

“Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth” (Psalm 46:10, NKJV). Consider the Holiness of God. Consider the holiness that is related to the sound of the blowing of the shofar. Consider the Godly significance of the sound of the shofar and of the related events of bible prophecy and history. God’s Holiness is the object of such a call.

HOLY IS THE LORD!!! HOLY IS THE LORD!!! HOLY IS THE LORD!!!

“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” (1 Corinthians 15:52, KJV). “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: 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. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.The catching up of the saints, also known as the rapture of the church, is a term that applies to those of the church age, those whom are a part of the Spiritual Kingdom, those whom have been born again” (1 Thessalonians 4:16-18 King James Version, KJV).

The Greek word from which the term “rapture” is derived appears in 1 Thessalonians 4:17, translated “caught up.” The Latin translation of this verse uses the word rapturo. The Greek word that it translates is harpazo, which means to snatch or take away (Dr. Charles C. Ryrie).

The rapture specifically relates to Israel (Daniel 9:20). The purpose of the rapture is for God to Judge sin and to draw Jews to saving faith in Christ (Daniel 9:24). A political leader (Anti-Christ) will make a treaty with the Jews, and will break it mid way during the tribulation (Daniel 9:27). In addition to Jews, gentiles can also be drawn to saving faith in Christ, and be born again during the seven-years of tribulation. The time of the tribulation will be harsh beyond human comprehension; it will consist of the wrath of God (Revelation 6:1, 7:6-7, 16:1), and the persecution by the Anti-Christ (Revelation 6:2) against Jews and those whom come to faith in Christ.

This article discusses the Spiritual Kingdom, which relates to God and people, not to places and things. Places and things may enter into the conversation when they relate to those of the Spiritual Kingdom. A trumpet will be sounded as Christ begins His descent from heaven to catch up His born again believers on earth prior to the beginning of the tribulation. Neither, rapture nor tribulation, will be an allegory or spiritually symbolic of those events that are written in God’s Word. The rapture is a friend to those whom are born again believers in Christ. The tribulation will be the worst possible nightmare for those whom are not born again, and are not caught up in the rapture; they will experience the actual persecution of the Anti-Christ, and the outpouring of the wrath of God on our world and on the people that remain.

Consider the following verses that relate to other purposes for the sounding of the trumpet, which is also known as the shofar and the ram’s horn.

Exodus 19:18-20 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB): God is coming to His people to give instruction.

18 Mount Sinai was completely enveloped in smoke because the Lord came down on it in fire. Its smoke went up like the smoke of a furnace, and the whole mountain shook violently. 19 As the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke and God answered him in the thunder.

20 The Lord came down on Mount Sinai at the top of the mountain. Then the Lord summoned Moses to the top of the mountain, and he went up.

Matthew 24:29-31 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB): The trumpet sounds as Christ returns to earth at the end of the tribulation.

29 “Immediately after the tribulation of those days: The sun will be darkened, and the moon will not shed its light; the stars will fall from the sky, and the celestial powers will be shaken.

30 “Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and then all the peoples of the earth will mourn; and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31 He will send out His angels with a loud trumpet, and they will gather His elect from the four winds, from one end of the sky to the other.

The Kingdom Of God

The use of the term “kingdom of heaven.” In the Scriptures the term “kingdom” is used in seven different ways: (1) the Gentile kingdoms, (2) the kingdoms of Israel and Judah, (3) the kingdom of Satan, (4) God’s universal kingdom, (5) a spiritual kingdom, (6) the millennial Davidic kingdom, (7) the mystery form of the kingdom (J. Dwight Pentecost, Things To Come, page 142).

We will begin a discussion of the kingdoms, as they relate to eschatology. We will consider: The Spiritual Kingdom, The Millennial Kingdom and, The Mystery form of the Kingdom. In this article we will discuss the Spiritual Kingdom.

Spiritual Kingdom.

The Spiritual Kingdom is very closely related to God’s universal kingdom. The Spiritual Kingdom consists of all people whom have experienced the new birth (John 3:3-8), which came by the power of God’s Holy Spirit. Per John 3:3, no one can enter into the Kingdom of God, without having been “born again,” which is more correct by saying, “born from above.” The Spiritual Kingdom, “is,” always “has been,” and always “will be.” The words, “always,” and “is,” describe God. Consider Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning, God.” In Isaiah 7:14/Matthew 1:23, we see that Christ is “God with us.” Consider Exodus 3:14, John 8:48-59 and Revelation 1:8. In these verses, we see the eternality of God. In John 1:1, we see that Christ is God: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” Re: Genesis 1:1 – “in the beginning,” not of eternity, but of the creation of the world (Ryrie Study Bible). Re: John 1:1 – “in the beginning,” before time began, Christ was already in existence with God (Ryrie Study Bible).

The Spiritual Kingdom of God, consists of God, whom “is” Spirit (Father, Son, Holy Spirit), and everyone whom has ever been born again, of all time. It will be a crowded place, but a wonderful place to be.

John 4:24, “God is Spirit.” The KJV reads, “God is a spirit,” which is in error. If God were, “a spirit,” He would be one of many spirits, and would be a little “g” god. In “God is Spirit,” God is unique in that he “is” Spirit. He is like none other, and none other is like God.

The Spiritual Kingdom of God, “is within peoples’ hearts” (an illustration of those whom have been born again). The pronoun could hardly refer to the Pharisees, in general, with whom Christ is speaking in Luke 17:20-21 (MacArthur Study Bible).

Luke 17:21, “the kingdom of God is in your midst” (NASB). The KJV incorrectly reads, “the kingdom of God is within you.”

The rapture of the church is the event in which Christ returns from Heaven to earth and, while remaining in the air, catches up all New Testament era born again believers in Christ (some living, others deceased; deceased saints will be “resurrected” first, followed by living saints whom will be “caught up”). Absent from their earthly bodies, these two groups of saints will be present with the Lord. They will go to the judgment seat of Christ for rewards. From the Judgment Seat of Christ, Christ and “His bride,” the caught up saints, will go to the Marriage of the Lamb. From there, Christ and His bride, will descend to Earth, where Christ will defeat the enemies of God at the Battle Of Armageddon. Following the battle, which is a spiritual battle, Christ and His bride will enter the Kingdom/Millennium, where the marriage supper of the Lamb will take place. Joining the Bride and Christ will be (1) the Old Testament Saints, (2) the tribulation era deceased Saints and, (3) the survivors of the tribulation, whom have come to saving faith in Christ and are born again. After ruling and reigning with Christ for a thousand years, the next stop for all of these saints will be the eternal state.

The people that inhabit the Kingdom are those that were born again, as far back as the garden of Eden, and will consist of those whom will have been born again up until the day that Christ returns from Heaven (Second Coming Of Christ) with His “pre-rapture” born again saints. There will also be people whom will be born during the Kingdom Age, whom must also be born again in order for them to enter the eternal state (New Heaven, New Earth, New Jerusalem). The Kingdom Age babies will be the children of the people whom are born again during the tribulation, and are allowed by Christ to enter the Kingdom without being resurrected from death, or raptured while alive. Prior to entry into the eternal state, all people must have perfect resurrection bodies and souls, to match their born again spirits. God will provide resurrection bodies and souls for all of His righteous, born again, believers in Christ. It must be stated that any sinful actions that occur during the millennium will come from the children of tribulation era saints whom enter the millennium without having been resurrected or raptured. Those born during the millennium will not have the spirit of Christ dwelling within their spirits, prompting them to righteousness, until they have accepted Christ as Lord and Savior; then, they will be born again. Not all of those millennium babies will be born again, because they will not have accepted Christ as Lord and Savior. They will be of the Satanic forces whom will attack the saints at the end of the millennium in the Battle of God and Magog; they lose! (Revelation 20:7-9).

It will be at the second coming of Christ (not the rapture) that He will return to Earth and stand on the Mount of Olives (Acts 1:11, Revelation 1:7, 19:11-16, Zechariah 14:4). He will execute judgment on those whom had missed the rapture of the church. Those, whom will have come to faith in Christ during the tribulation (having been born again), will remain on earth to enter the millennium. There, they will rule and reign with Christ, with all other saints, until the time that all saints enter the eternal state of the “new heaven, new earth and new Jerusalem.” Those, whom will not have come to faith in Christ during the tribulation, will experience death and will be resurrected at the end of the millennium. Then, they will appear at the Great White Throne Judgment, with all other unsaved people of all time (those whom had not been born again), and will then be cast into the lake of fire which burns forever and ever. Only the people whom are righteous, whom have been born again, whom have the Spirit of Christ dwelling within their spirits, will escape this horrible eternity in the lake of fire.

At the time of the return of Christ to earth, Jews and gentiles will be judged in groups by Christ, as groups of Jews and as groups of gentiles. Those whom will have accepted Christ as Lord and Savior during the tribulation, will have been born again. The born again believers will have no lake of fire experience; they will be left behind from judgment to enter the Kingdom, and will face no judgment to determine the place of their eternity. At the time that they were born again, their eternity with Christ was set in stone. The dead saints of the Old Testament and tribulation eras will be resurrected at the time of the second coming of Christ to earth; then, they will be given perfect resurrection bodies and souls, and will enter the millennium. At the end of the millennium, all born again saints will go from the Kingdom into the eternal state of the new heaven, new earth and new Jerusalem. Those whom will be born during the millennium must accept Christ as Lord and Savior in order for them to be born again, to be given eternal holy bodies, and to enter the eternal state.

The second coming of Christ to earth for judgment is no allegory or spiritual example of God’s judgment; it “will” happen. The best way for anyone to prepare for this event is to be born again prior to the rapture, thereby being excused from this horrible time on God’s prophetic calendar.

The following video tells the story of this article. The Happy Goodman family is shown, from left to right, all brothers, left to right, Sam, Howard and Rusty. Vestal, the wife of Howard, was standing between Sam and Howard. The song tells the story of the Goodman family, whom are all now with the Lord. While they were living, they had been born again. Their spirits were in the Presence of God in the third heaven. At their death, their souls (mind, consciousness, emotions) joined their spirits. Their bodies are now in the ground. At the time of the rapture, their bodies will be raised, in perfection, to join their souls and spirits that are with God. See the verses of explanation below the video.

Happy Goodman Family. I Believe He’s Coming Back

Scriptures of reference.

The spirit

John 3:3 “You must be born again.”

John 14:20 The intermingling of God’s Spirit with the spirits of born again believers.

John 10:28 Born again believers are eternally secure in Christ.

John 16:8 God’s Holy Spirit will prompt born again believers in Christ to righteous living and to the sharing of the Word of Christ with unbelievers.

Spirit, Soul, Body 1 Thessalonians 5:23

Perfection of the born again spirit. 2 Corinthians 5:17, Colossians 1:27, 1 John 1:5. The spirit, that is “in Christ, in God,” is a spirit that is literally dwelling within the Spirit of God the Father, God the Son and, God the Holy Spirit.

The Rapture Of The Church

John 14:1-6 (These words were spoken by Christ to His disciples (minus Judas Iscariot) on the evening prior to His death on the cross.)
1 Thessalonians 4:16-17
1 Corinthians 15:50-54
2 Corinthians 5:8 absent from the body, present with the Lord.
2 Corinthians 5:10 the Judgment Seat of Christ, for rewards.
Revelation 19:7-8 the Marriage of the Lamb

The Tribulation

Daniel 12:1
Matthew 24:4-26
Revelation Chapters 6-18

The Second Coming Of Christ/Battle Of Armageddon

Matthew 24:29-31
Zechariah 14:1-15
Jude vs 14-15
Revelation 19:11-21

The Rapture of Living Saints

John 14:1-6
1 Thessalonians 4:17
1 Corinthians 15:50-54

The Resurrection Of Deceased:

New Testament Saints – 1 Thessalonians 4:16, 1 Corinthians 15:52
Old Testament Saints – Daniel 12:2
Tribulation Saints – Revelation 20:4
Unrighteous, unbelievers – Revelation 20:5/20:10-15

The Judgment Of Jews And Gentiles – End Of Tribulation

Jews – Matthew 24:40-41 – Unrighteous taken to judgment; righteous left to enter the Kingdom.
Gentiles – Matthew 25:34 – Righteous to inherit the kingdom.
Gentiles – Matthew 25:46 – Unrighteous taken to judgment.
The righteous will have been born again.

The Kingdom Age Duration – 1,000 years – Revelation 20:4, 6

The Judgment of the unrighteous – Revelation 20:10-15

The Destruction of Heaven and Earth – 2 Peter 3:12-13; Revelation 21:1

The Eternal State

The New Heaven, New Earth, New Jerusalem – Revelation 21:1-2

All things made new – Revelation 21:5

The names of the 12 tribes of Israel written on the 12 gates of the new Jerusalem – Revelation 21:12.

The names of the 12 apostles written on the 12 foundations of the wall of the new Jerusalem – Jerusalem 21:14

The eternity of God, the Lamb, and Born Again Believers – Revelation 22:1-5 “The” throne of God and the Lamb; “His” servants shall serve Him. The servants will reign forever and ever. (Believers in the New Jerusalem will be servant-kings, ever praising and serving God, yet reigning themselves for eternity. Moody Bible Commentary)

The second coming of Christ, with judgment

Matthew 24:21-30. vs 21, the events of God’s judgment in the tribulation will be worse than anything from the beginning of the world (See Revelation bowl judgments). Christ returns to earth “after the tribulation. ” vs 28 describes a condition of death. vs 30 There will be mourning at the sight of Christ coming in the clouds. Notice that this passage, in no way, matches the events of the catching up of the saints, which was a joyful event (Titus 2:13).

Matthew 24:31-41 Christ judges the Jews. vs 31 angels are sent to gather the elect (Jews) that are on the earth. vs 40-41. One will be taken to judgment, and the other will remain on earth to enter the millennium. Notice that this passage, in no way, matches the events of the catching up of the saints, which was a joyful event (Titus 2:13).

Matthew 25:31-46 vs 32, Christ judges the gentiles at the sheep and goat judgment. vs 34 Sheep will have been born again; they will enter the millennial kingdom. 41 Goats will not have been born again; vs 46 they will go to everlasting punishment.

Zechariah 14:1-12. Christ, and His raptured saints return from Heaven to Earth, where Christ defeats the gentile nations that are attacking Israel. The effects resemble a nuclear attack.

Revelation 19:11-21. Christ and His saints return to earth, where Christ defeat those who are attacking Israel. The result is the same as Zechariah 14:1-12.

John 3:3 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)

3 Jesus replied, “I assure you: Unless someone is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

Final Thought

This article is so serious that it should not end without comment. Parents, consider the following words, very attentively.

God has given the responsibility to parents for rearing their children.

Deuteronomy 6:4-9 NKJV

4 “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one! 5 You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.

6 “And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. 7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. 8 You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. 9 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

God spoke words of rebuke to the northern kingdom of Israel through the Prophet, Hosea, for their neglect of His Word.

Hosea 4:6 NKJV

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you from being priest for Me; Because you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children.

A Challenge

God’s Word is true and Holy. Parents, is your home holy? Are you making it a place where your children can receive the Word of God, and be open and receptive to the call of the Holy Spirit on their lives, as He attempts to draw your children to saving faith in Christ, with the result of them being born again? Is your television a portal of righteousness, or does it bring untruth, filth and violence into your home? Do you monitor your tv, and ensure that news programs report truth to your family? Does your church preach the gospel of Christ, or has its pulpit become a soapbox of unrighteous politics? Have you made all things possible for you and your children to spend eternity with Christ? Or, will you lead your family to the lake of fire?

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