Have you ever tried to read the Bible yet couldn't understand it? Jesus said that the secrets about God's Kingdom are revealed only to those who are willing to accept God's rule in their lives. Listen to what Jesus said, "Unto you (the followers of Christ) it is given to know the mystery (secrets) of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without (outside of God's kingdom), all these things are done in parables (hidden truths)" (Mark 4:11).
What is the Kingdom of God is the rule of God. "Since, however, this earth is the scene of universal rebellion against God, the Kingdom of God is the sphere in which, at any given time, His rule is acknowledge (W. E. Vine).
The Bible tells us that the god of this world has blinded people's minds (2.Cor. 4:4), that the kingdoms of this world are being controlled by Satan (Mt.4:8-9), that Satan is the prince of the power of the air and that he is working in people (Eph.2:2), and that he has taken people captive (2 Tim.2:25-26). This is a clear demonstration of the conflict between Jesus and Satan that is occurring in this present world. The battle is over the hearts, minds, ownership, and rule of individuals. To prepare people for God's rule of righteousness in their hearts, Jesus began preaching. "Repent (turn from sin, and turn to God), for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand" (Matthew 4:17).
The mission of bringing the reign of God into people's lives, was given by Jesus to His disciples through their preaching efforts (Lk.16:16; Mt.24:14; Lk.9:1-6, 59-60;10:1-11; Acts 8:5,12; 19:8-10; 20:24-25; 28:23-31). Within this gospel message is the offer of the forgiveness of sins and eternal life (Lk.24:47; Mat.25:34, 46). Jesus speaks of this when He says, "I am sending you (the Apostle Paul) to open people's eyes and turn them from darkness to light, from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins..." (Acts 26:18). The Apostle Paul described this gospel as God's power to deliver from darkness, and translate one into the Kingdom of God's dear Son (Col.1:13). Is it through redemption (Jesus blood) that the forgiveness of sins is being offered (Col.1:14).
When a disciple named Philip went down to the city of Samaria, he preached Christ to them (the word "Christ" means "anointed" to rule, the anointed King). When people believed Philip's preaching concerning the Kingdom of God (accepting God's rule and reign in their lives), and the person of Jesus the Christ, they were baptized, both men and women (Acts 8:5, 12). It was in this way that they were acknowledging their repentance from sin and allegiance to Jesus as King of their lives.
The announcement of the Kingdom, was the proclamation that God is now acting through Jesus, to deliver people from their bondage to Satan and sin. On the cross, Jesus gave Himself for our sins, to deliver us from this present evil world (the authority of Satan's domain and rule), and to purchase us completely for Himself (Gal.1:4). First Corinthians 6:19-20 states, "Ye are not your own. For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, what are God's."
What kingdom are you under? What master are you serving? Jesus said, the time is fulfilled and the Kingdom (or Rulership of God) has come in Him (Mk.1:15). Will you turn to God (through Jesus), for the forgiveness of your sins and the new life He now offers? Will you give your allegiance to Him?
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Tract No. 88 by Don Krow