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Jehovah’s Witnesses

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AWAKE! JULY 2013

 THE BIBLE’S VIEWPOINT

God’s Kingdom

God’s Kingdom

Is God’s Kingdom a condition of the heart?

“You are not far from the kingdom of God.”Mark 12:34.

WHAT PEOPLE SAY

Many people believe that God’s Kingdom is, as one major denomination of Christendom put it, “the reign of God in the heart and life of the individual.”

WHAT THE BIBLE SAYS

The Kingdom is a real government, not just a metaphor for a person’s submitting to God in his heart. God’s Kingdom will rule over the entire earth.Psalm 72:8; Daniel 7:14.

What, though, about Jesus’ statement that “the kingdom of God is within you”? (Italics ours; Luke 17:21, King James Version) Jesus could not have meant that the Kingdom was in the hearts of his listeners. Why not? Because on that occasion his listeners were the Pharisees. Jesus said that they would be excluded from the Kingdom because their form of worship was hypocritical and thus unacceptable to God. (Matthew 23:13) However, Jesus could rightly say that God’s Kingdom is “within you” or, as the New World Translation says, “in your midst.” Why? Because he, as the future King of the Kingdom, was standing right before them.Luke 17:21.

 What is God’s Kingdom?

“Let your kingdom come. Let your will take place, as in heaven, also upon earth.”Matthew 6:10.

WHAT THE BIBLE SAYS

The Kingdom is a real government by God with Jesus Christ as Ruler. (Matthew 28:18; 1 Timothy 6:14, 15) Its mission is to accomplish God’s will in heaven and on earth. (Matthew 6:10) Thus, by means of his Kingdom, God will solve man’s problems. The Kingdom will do what human institutions could never accomplish.

Under the rule of God’s Kingdom, the human family will experience peace, security, and prosperity on a paradise earth. (Psalm 46:9; Isaiah 35:1; Micah 4:4) No one will get sick or die anymore, and disease will be eliminated. (Isaiah 33:24; Revelation 21:4) Even the aging process will be reversed. The Bible foretells: “Let his flesh become fresher than in youth; let him return to the days of his youthful vigor.”Job 33:25.

WHAT YOU CAN DO

Regardless of your ancestry or place of birth, you can become a subject of God’s Kingdom if you do what God asks of you. The Bible says: “God is not partial, but in every nation the man that fears him and works righteousness is acceptable to him.”Acts 10:34, 35.

Will human efforts bring God’s Kingdom?

“The God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be brought to ruin.”Daniel 2:44.

WHAT PEOPLE SAY

Some believe that humans will establish the Kingdom of God on earth, either by converting others to their faith or by working for world peace and brotherhood.

WHAT THE BIBLE SAYS

God—not man—sets up the Kingdom. (Daniel 2:44) At the inauguration of the Kingdom, God says: “I, even I, have installed my king.” (Psalm 2:6) Humans do not bring God’s Kingdom, and they cannot disrupt its affairs, since it will rule over the earth from heaven.Matthew 4:17.

WHY SHOULD IT MATTER TO YOU?

It is only natural to wish that humankind could one day achieve peace and unity. You might even expend yourself trying to bring these about but then despair when your goals are not reached. Knowing that God’s power is behind his Kingdom will allow you to direct your efforts most productively, by becoming a subject of that Kingdom.