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Christian Destiny Christian Destiny
Your Questions Answered

Q. What is the kingdom of heaven?
A. The kingdom of heaven is the special subject of the preaching of Christ in the Gospel of Matthew. Christ initiated His earthly ministry with the announcement of the kingdom. From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, “Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

What then is the kingdom? It is an actual, political entity ruled by Christ which would bring the blessed conditions of heaven to the earth itself.

Jesus said, “After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven” (Matt. 6:9,10). Sadly, the King and the kingdom were rejected by the Jews. “They answered and said, He is guilty of death. Then did they spit in his face, and buffeted him; and others smote him with the palms of their hands” (Matt. 26:66,67).

Nevertheless, He is coming one day as the king. “The Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory” (Matt. 25:31). Following that, the king shall judge the nations of the world (Matt. 25:34,40).

Q. How then does the Church Age differ from the Kingdom Age?
A. There has not yet been a Kingdom Age because neither Israel nor the world has consented to the will of God being done “in earth, as it is in heaven.”

This, however, is the Church Age. What is happening now is described in the book of Acts, “Simeon has declared how God at the first did visit the Gentiles, to take out of them a people for His name” (Acts 15:14). Then the Lord promises that “After this I will return, and will build again the tabernacle of David, which is fallen down; and I will build again the ruins thereof, and I will set it up” (Acts 15:16).

The Church exists in the interim period in which the tabernacle of David is in ruins. When the Church is taken out of the world, the “Gospel of the Kingdom” will again be preached. The kingdom of heaven will then come on earth for 1,000 unforgettable years (Rev. 20:4). The Church and the kingdom are specifically not the same thing.

Q. Why was the kingdom program for Israel set aside and the Church Age begun?
A. Christ offered to regather Israel and rule them but, as He said, “you would not!” (Matt. 23:37). Therefore, the house of Israel was left desolate and will be so until they say “Blessed is He that comes in the name of the Lord” (Matt. 23:39). In the meantime, the Lord ordained “the Body of Christ” to be created and perfected in this world (Eph. 1:23).

Q. Has God then cast away His people, Israel?
A. The Apostle Paul faces this very question and says, “God forbid” (Rom. 11:1). He then gives us two reasons by which we know that God has yet a remaining program for Israel.

The first reason is that Paul himself was saved by faith in Christ. This offer is made to every Jew and every Gentile today. Therefore, if we believe in Christ we are made members of His Body.

Secondly, God has not cast away Israel because He foreknew them. The Scripture therefore predicts that Israel will one day repent and turn to Jesus as its Messiah. This will take place during the period called “The Tribulation,” preparing Israel for the millennial reign of Christ.

Q. How does the law apply to my life as a Christian?
A. When we use the expression “the Law” in regards to Scripture, we are doubtless referring to the Law of Moses. As Christians, we must think of the Law in two ways.

First of all, the Law is established as the expression of God’s standard of righteousness for faith. Paul says, “We establish the law” (Rom. 3:31). We are not, however, required to keep the Law as the basis of our salvation. Rather, “Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us” (Gal. 3:13). Paul insists that we are “Justified by faith apart from the deeds of the law” (Rom. 3:28).

Q. What then must I do to be saved?
A. Concerning this the Scripture says, “God imputes righteousness without works . . .Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin” (Rom. 4:6,8). Therefore, salvation comes “to him that works not, but believes on Him that justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness” (Rom. 4:5). I can do nothing to be saved except believe the Gospel as a result of which I am saved eternally.

Q. Who then can be saved?
A. The Scripture says, “Whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

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