The Gospel of the Kingdom

by Jeffrey W. Hamilton


Text: Psalms 2


I.         An important event happened during the first century that many today have ignored or have declared did not happen

            A.        Jesus spent time teaching that the kingdom of God was at hand - Mark 1:14-15

                        1.         It was the good news about the kingdom - Matthew 4:23

                        2.         It was for this message that Jesus was sent - Luke 4:43

                        3.         While preaching it, his disciples followed and learned - Luke 8:1

            B.        Jesus then sent his disciples out to preach about the kingdom - Luke 9:1-2

                        1.         Excuses for avoiding the work were not accepted - Luke 9:59-62

                        2.         The seventy were sent out with the message - Luke 10:1, 9-11

            C.        The instruction continued even after Jesus’ death - Acts 1:3

            D.        The disciples continued to teach about the kingdom

                        1.         Philip - Acts 8:12

                        2.         Paul - Acts 19:8; 20:25

                        3.         Once a Paul taught all day about this one topic - Acts 28:23

                        4.         Even while imprisoned, Paul continued to speak about it - Acts 28:30-31

            E.        It was a part of their writing - I Thessalonians 2:10-12

            F.        Christians suffered persecution for it - II Thessalonians 1:3-5

II.        I hope you see that the kingdom was not a minor topic.

            A.        Its preaching consumed the time of many people.

            B.        It should be obvious that this kingdom has some value - Matthew 13:44-46

III.       The nature of this kingdom is spiritual, not physical

            A.        The disciples constantly looked for a physical kingdom - Luke 24:21; Acts 1:6

                        1.         That is why there was constant discussion of positioning in the kingdom - Matthew 20:21

                        2.         In a way, their question just before Pentecost was quite sad. After 40 days of additional teaching on the kingdom (Acts 1:3), they still didn’t understand it.

            B.        Jesus taught that it was not a physical kingdom - Luke 17:20-21

                        1.         You cannot define its boarders. You cannot point out its capitol.

                        2.         If you look for it in the physical world, you will overlook it because it is present inside people.

            C.        The kingdom is not of the world - John 18:36

                        1.         This is why no one can be forced into the kingdom

                        2.         Even so, it is a true kingdom.

                        3.         Christ is its ruler.

            D.        Perhaps you can understand Jesus’ statement - Mark 12:32-34

                        1.         Jesus is obviously not saying that the scribe is physically close to the kingdom.

                        2.         It was his understanding of the Scriptures that placed him close to it in a spiritual sense.

IV.      Why call it a kingdom if it doesn’t exist in the physical world?

            A.        When Israel demanded a king of Samuel, they did not recognize that they already had a king. - I Samuel 8:4-7

                        1.         They had always been a kingdom - Exodus 19:5-6

                        2.         Why was it hard to accept? Because they couldn’t see their king.

                        3.         Notice though that the kingdom exists if they would obey God’s voice.

                        4.         Being a citizen of God’s kingdom was actually voluntary

            B.        God rules over those who choose to be his.

                        1.         Matthew 6:10 - God’s kingdom comes when His will is done.

                        2.         Matthew 6:33 - Seek not just the kingdom, but also its righteousness

            C.        God rules whether men accept His authority or not

                        1.         That is the hard lesson that Nebuchadnezzar learned - Daniel 4:1-3, 30-37

                        2.         Psalm 103:19 - God rules over all kingdoms

                        3.         Psalm 145:13 - God’s kingdom has no end.

            D.        It was foretold that a kingdom would be established, which Christ would reign

                        1.         Daniel 2:44 - It would consume all other nations

                                    a.         Yet it doesn’t say that it would end the rule of other kingdoms

                                    b.         But other kingdoms could not last against it.

                        2.         Luke 1:31-33 - Jesus would have control of the nation of Israel

                        3.         His rule would not depend on man’s acceptance - Psalm 2

                        4.         He would rule in the midst of enemies - Psalm 110:1-3

                        5.         He holds all authority - Matthew 28:18

                        6.         Even angels are under his authority - I Peter 3:22

            E.        Evidence of Jesus’ rule

                        1.         The ability to control demons - Luke 11:20

                        2.         He is head of the church - Ephesians 1:20-22

                        3.         Who is it that always gets His way? God!

                                    a.         Can a nation make Christianity illegal? It won’t last.

                                    b.         Can a nation defy God? It won’t last. (Where is ancient Rome? Where is the USSR?)

            F.        It is because Jesus is the supreme King that gives us the right to ignore men and follow God - Acts 4:19-20, 23-28

V.        Citizenship in the kingdom of God is voluntary - Psalms 110:3

            A.        The choice is yours whether to be a part of this kingdom or not.

            B.        No matter what is your choice, God remains your king.

            C.        Eventually, you must appear before Him to give an account - II Corinthians 5:10

            D.        Will you join others in willingly submitting to the King of Kings?

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