All quotations are from the New King James Version of the Bible.
1 Samuel 2:10 The adversaries of the LORD shall be broken in pieces; From heaven He will thunder against them. The LORD will judge the ends of the earth. “He will give strength to His king, and exalt the horn of His anointed.”
In this triumphant prayer of Hannah the mother of Samuel we have an early prophecy of the kingdom of God and His Christ – Messiah – Anointed One = King.
It is worth noting that the term ‘the anointed’ refers to any King appointed by God. In the Septuagint the word is O Xristos, The Christ. Christ is not a surname or a name but a designation meaning the King. Where there is a King, surely there is a kingdom!
1 Samuel 8:4 Then all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah, and said to him, “Look, you are old, and your sons do not walk in your ways. Now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.” But the thing displeased Samuel when they said, “Give us a king to judge us.” So Samuel prayed to the LORD. And the LORD said to Samuel, “Heed the voice of the people in all that they say to you; for they have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me, that I should not reign over them.
Since Moses, through Joshua (Jesus) through all the judges and Samuel, God had ruled Israel through prophecy. When the King speaks, the subjects must obey. At this point Israel rebels against this direct rule of God and insist they have a man to rule as King over them; ‘Like the rest of the nations’. They rejected (literally treat with contempt, despised) the Heavenly King and thereby left the Kingdom (rule) of God.
Isaiah 9:6 For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; And the government (rule) will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government (reign) and peace There will be no end, Upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, To order it and establish it with judgment and justice From that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.
This is a prophecy that God will re-establish His Kingdom by the birth of the King of His choosing, at the time of His choosing. Prince of Peace is reflected in the name of the King of Salem (Peace) Melchizedek, a shadow of the anointed king to come, Jesus, referred to in Hebrews.
Isaiah 45:1 “Thus says the LORD to His anointed (Christ), To Cyrus, whose right hand I have held— To subdue nations before him And loose the armour of kings, To open before him the double doors, So that the gates will not be shut:
Here again we see the word Xristos, Christ, used in connection with a pagan King. Due to an absence of understanding of the kingdom of God the word Christ has pretty much lost its significance as designating the King and has been reduced to a type of ‘surname’. Hopefully as we see the Kingdom of Heaven we will appreciate that Jesus of Nazareth is the one anointed as King of the Kingdom of God.
Isaiah 52:7 How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, Who proclaims peace, Who brings glad tidings of good things, Who proclaims salvation, Who says to Zion, “Your God reigns (as King)!”
Is this the first reference to the good news preached, publicised by John the Baptist and then the Lord Jesus Himself? By declaring ‘Your God reigns’ the Kingdom of Heaven is being declared as a present reality.
Jeremiah 23:5 “Behold, the days are coming,” says the LORD, “That I will raise to David a Branch of righteousness; A King shall reign and prosper, and execute judgment and righteousness in the earth. In His days Judah will be saved, And Israel will dwell safely; Now this is His name by which He will be called: THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS. (Melchizedek).
Through the line of His adoptive father Joseph, Jesus was reckoned as a son of David. The people who recognised Jesus of Nazareth as the Messiah, the one anointed as King of Israel, called Him ‘Son of David.’ But Jesus questions the Pharisees saying;
Matthew 22:41 While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, saying, “What do you think about the Christ? Whose Son is He?” They said to Him, “The Son of David.” He said to them, “How then does David in the Spirit call Him ‘Lord,’ saying: ‘The LORD said to my Lord, “Sit at My right hand, Till I make Your enemies Your footstool”’? “If David then calls Him ‘Lord,’ how is He his Son?”
Daniel 2:44 “And in the days of these kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed; and the kingdom shall not be left to other people; it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever.
Here we are clearly informed that the as then coming Kingdom of Heaven would impact and effect the earth, this present world. From the Heavens, to the earth.
If we look at this whole of chapter 2 concerning the dream of Nebuchadnezzar and the interpretation by God through His prophet Daniel; we can see that the time of the coming of the kingdom of God to earth is clearly indicated as occurring during the Roman Empire. The toes of clay and iron indicate the people of God – Israel – and the Roman gentiles – mingling but not adhering to each other, just as in Judea at the time of Jesus of Nazareth.
Luke 1:31 “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name JESUS. (Yah’yshua = I AM Salvation) “He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. “And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.”
Here God speaks to Mary through the angel (messenger) and makes it clear just Who she will give birth to. This is that Messiah, the one anointed to be King of the kingdom of heaven; King of Israel.
Luke 17:20 Now when He was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, He answered them and said, “The kingdom of God does not come with observation; “nor will they say, ‘See here!’ or ‘See there!’ For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you.”
The Pharisees, like many today, were unable to see the kingdom of God, because they had not been born from above, of water (baptism for remission of sins by the name of Jesus; nor born of the Spirit. See Nicodemus in John chapter 3.)
Jesus is stating that the kingdom is right here, right now, within those who are the sons of the kingdom.
Luke 19:37 Then, as He was now drawing near the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole multitude of the disciples began to rejoice and praise God with a loud voice for all the mighty works they had seen, saying: “‘Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the LORD!’ Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!”
Here Jesus is acclaimed as the anointed one (King) promised by God since the early fathers of Israel.
Matthew 3:1 In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea, and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!” For this is he who was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah, saying: “The voice of one crying in the wilderness: ‘Prepare the way of the LORD; Make His paths straight.’”
The good news being announced was of the kingdom of heaven accompanied by the offer of remission of sins via submitting to the command or counsel of the King to repent and be baptised by the one He had sent. Jesus made it clear that refusal to obey God’s counsel on this matter of repentance and baptism excluded such from entering the kingdom of God.
Matthew 4:23 And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom, and healing all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease among the people.
The declaration of the kingdom of God is always accompanied by signs and wonders, healings and deliverance in the name of the King, the Lord Jesus. God working with them, confirming His word.
Matthew 6:9 “In this manner, therefore, pray: Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
The focus of all prayer made by the servants of the king is to be the kingdom of God, His rule, His name, His will. Knowing that it is the Father’s good will to give us the kingdom, through the indwelling Holy Spirit.
Matthew 6:33 “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.
Again, the primary focus of the disciples of the Lord Jesus, the King of the kingdom of heaven, is to be His kingdom, His reign. We can leave the other aspects of life to our Lord and Master.
Matthew 7:21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.
Being a subject of the kingdom of heaven is not in doing things in the name of Jesus, but doing what He commands those who are His students and subjects. Those who don’t obey the King are rebels, outlaws, ‘workers of lawlessness’.
Matthew 10:7 “And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’
As we saw in Isaiah 52,7; the present availability of the kingdom of heaven is the good news that all of creation is waiting and looking for.
Matthew 11:11 “Assuredly, I say to you, among those born of women there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist; but he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. “And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force.
By entering the kingdom of heaven through repentance, being born of water (baptism in the name of Jesus for remission of sins) and being born of the Spirit (receiving the gift of the Holy Spirit) our status changes from merely being born of woman to being born from above, a child of the King! A higher level than any of the prophets, being born of God.
Matthew 12:28 “But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God, surely the kingdom of God has come upon you.
This present kingdom of God is revealed in the mighty acts of the Spirit, executed by the servants of the most high God.
Matthew 13:10 And the disciples came and said to Him, “Why do You speak to them in parables?” He answered and said to them, “Because it has been given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given.
The servants of the King are granted knowledge of the King’s affairs that outsiders are not privy to.
Matthew 13:31 Another parable He put forth to them, saying: “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field, “which indeed is the least of all the seeds; but when it is grown it is greater than the herbs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and nest in its branches.”
As prophesied in Daniel 2, 44, the kingdom of God is growing until it fills the whole earth.
Matthew 13:38 “The field is the world, the good seeds are the sons of the kingdom, but the tares are the sons of the wicked one.
When Jesus the King sows the good news of the kingdom He sows sons of the kingdom. The very seed is of the King and grows into sons of the King.
Matthew 13:44 “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid; and for joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls, “who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had and bought it.
Those who make it their business to find the kingdom of heaven will go looking for it and will discover it, hidden inside themselves. Out of joy they sell all, leave all, take up their cross and follow the Lord Jesus, the King.
Matthew 16:19 “And I will give you (Peter) the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”
Matthew 18:18 “Assuredly, I say to you (all), whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you (all) loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. “Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. “For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.”
These keys of the kingdom are keys that unlock access to the privileges of serving the King. This key is fellowship to conduct the business of the kingdom, purposefully together in the name or in the authority of the King, Jesus the Son of God. It is purposefully two or three servants of the King Jesus, on the King’s business in prayer.
Matthew 18:1 At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, “Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” Then Jesus called a little child to Him, set him in the midst of them, and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted (turn around) and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. “Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. “Whoever receives one little child like this in My name receives Me. Entering the kingdom of God is not by maturity or wisdom, it is through repentance, humbling oneself before the presence of the king, Jesus the Son of God.
John 1:45 Philip found Nathanael and said to him, “We have found Him of whom Moses in the law, and also the prophets, wrote—Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.” And Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.” Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward Him, and said of him, “Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom is no deceit!” Nathanael said to Him, “How do You know me?” Jesus answered and said to him, “Before Philip called you, when you were under the fig tree, I saw you.” Nathanael answered and said to Him, “Rabbi, You are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!”
John 3:1 There was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. This man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.” Jesus answered and said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born again (literally from above), he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb and be born?” Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. “That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. “Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again (literally from above).’ “The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”
We can contrast the encounter of Nathanael and Jesus to the encounter Nicodemus had. Nathanael didn’t hide his reaction to the news that Jesus was from Nazareth and the son of some nobody called Joseph. But when Nathanael met Jesus he knew by revelation that this was truly the Son of God, the King of Israel. Here Nathanael turned around, changed his opinion of Jesus and humbled himself before his king.
Nicodemus however was flattering to Jesus while at the same time hiding under cover of darkness so none of his religious elite friends would see them together. He acknowledges that Jesus is obviously sent from God but calls him Rabbi, Teacher, not having the revelation of the Spirit that this is the Son of God, the one anointed as King of the kingdom of heaven, the Messiah, Nicodemus is informed that unless he is born of water – baptised in the name of Jesus the king for the remission of sins – and born of the Spirit – baptised in the Holy Spirit –he cannot see or experience the kingdom of heaven. Entrance now into this present kingdom is via repentance, being baptised in the name or authority of the king, Jesus, for remission – removal – of sins; and consequently receiving the free gift of the Holy Spirit. This is being born from above.
The Greek word here translated as ‘again’ is ‘ano’, which means from above. It is also used as a metaphor for ‘again’ like in English where ‘from the top’ means ‘over again’. Nicodemus took it to mean ‘again’ but being born of the Spirit is to be born from above, from heaven, a son of the kingdom. Becoming as a little child, a new creation in Christ.
John 19:14 Now it was the Preparation Day of the Passover, and about the sixth hour. And he said to the Jews, “Behold your King!” But they cried out, “Away with Him, away with Him! Crucify Him!” Pilate said to them, “Shall I crucify your King?” The chief priests answered, “We have no king but Caesar!”
This a re-run of 1 Samuel 8:4 where Israel rejects the rule of God through His prophets and ask for a man to reign over them as king. Without the revelation that Jesus is the Son of the Living God and anointed as King of the kingdom of heaven we are not able to accept Jesus as our king.
John 20:21 So Jesus said to them again, “Peace to you! As the Father has sent Me, I also send you.” And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. “If you forgive (remit, release from) the sins of any, they are forgiven (remitted) them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”
Here Jesus is risen from the dead and as He is going to leave His servants, His disciples, He gives them authority in His name to remit, release from, sins. This happened later on the day of Pentecost when the Holy Spirit was poured out on these disciples and following the preaching of the message of the kingdom of God with Jesus made Lord and Christ (anointed one – king). When those who believed this message asked what they should do; Peter replied ‘Repent, and be baptised every one of you in the name of Jesus the Christ – anointed one – king; for the remission –release from – sin and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
Remission is not exactly the same as forgiveness. If you owe me £100,000 and are completely without any hope of ever repaying me, I could just forgive you the debt. You would no longer owe me but your conscience would not be completely clear. You might still avoid me! If on the other hand my son, who loves you, gives me the £100,000 to clear off your debt, then you no longer owe me and your conscience is clear towards me. You can now look me in the eyes. And you really love my son!
Acts 5:29 But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men. “The God of our fathers raised up Jesus whom you murdered by hanging on a tree. “Him God has exalted to His right hand to be Prince (Archigos – First, Ruler) and Saviour, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness (remission – release from) of sins. “And we are His witnesses to these things, and so also is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey Him. (literally submit to the Ruler, the King.)”
So submission to the King, Jesus the Son of God, is the way to be given the Holy Spirit! On the day of Pentecost three thousand repented and obeyed the command of the King to be baptized in His name for the remission, washing away of their sins and were given the gift of the Holy Spirit, the King within.
God was speaking through Peter by the Holy Spirit, with the sign of speaking in other languages and flames of fire. To those who rebelled on that day this was just a man speaking. To those who heard the word as the word of God faith came. This is why the good news that is by revelation of Jesus the King is the power of God to salvation to them that believe it – as coming from God through whoever Jesus the Lord sends to speak it.
Acts 8:4 Therefore those who were scattered went everywhere preaching the word. Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria and preached the Christ (King) to them. And the multitudes with one accord heeded the things spoken by Philip, hearing and seeing the miracles which he did. For unclean spirits, crying with a loud voice, came out of many who were possessed; and many who were paralyzed and lame were healed. And there was great joy in that city. But there was a certain man called Simon, who previously practiced sorcery in the city and astonished the people of Samaria, claiming that he was someone great, to whom they all gave heed, from the least to the greatest, saying, “This man is the great power of God.” And they heeded him because he had astonished them with his sorceries for a long time. But when they believed Philip as he preached the things concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, both men and women were baptized.
When Philip preached or announced publicly that Jesus was the Christ – King of the kingdom of heaven – God worked with him in signs and wonders confirming the word. This is still the same today. Jesus is the same, yesterday, today, the Christ – anointed king – forever.
Colossians 1:12 giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light. He has delivered us from the power (authority) of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.
If we seek as our priority the kingdom of God and His righteousness, we will obtain it. Everything else will fade into the background.
To discuss this or any other matter regarding the good news of Jesus Christ please email;
Colin Thompson, Gateshead, England.
Comments welcome by email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Other material on site at http://www.followingjesuschrist.co.uk/