7701 - The Coming Kingdom

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Luke 17:20-37 contains statements made by Jesus about the Kingdom of God.

Once, having been asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, Jesus replied, "The kingdom of God does not come with your careful observation, nor will people say, `Here it is,' or `There it is,' because the kingdom of God is within you."

Then he said to his disciples, "The time is coming when you will long to see one of the days of the Son of Man, but you will not see it. Men will tell you, `There he is!' or `Here he is!' Do not go running off after them. For the Son of Man in his day will be like the lightning, which flashes and lights up the sky from one end to the other.

But first he must suffer many things and be rejected by this generation.

"Just as it was in the days of Noah, so also will it be in the days of the Son of Man. People were eating, drinking, marrying and being given in marriage up to the day Noah entered the ark. Then the flood came and destroyed them all.

"It was the same in the days of Lot. People were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building. But the day Lot left Sodom, fire and sulfur rained down from heaven and destroyed them all.

"It will be just like this on the day the Son of Man is revealed. On that day no one who is on the roof of his house, with his goods inside, should go down to get them. Likewise, no one in the field should go back for anything.

Remember Lot's wife! Whoever tries to keep his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it.

I tell you, on that night two people will be in one bed; one will be taken and the other left. Two women will be grinding grain together; one will be taken and the other left. " "Where, Lord?" they asked. He replied, "Where there is a dead body, there the vultures will gather."

It was the Pharisees who asked the question regarding the Kingdom of God. Jesus said: “the Kingdom of God is within you.”

The Pharisees had rejected the message of Jesus and his miracles which confirmed he was the Messiah.

Jesus told them first, the Kingdom of God would not be a visible phenomenon. A second insight was that the Kingdom of God is already among you.

Jesus as saying to these unbelieving Pharisees that the Kingdom of God was already in your midst in the spiritual sense, in the person of the Messiah, Jesus Christ. His life and work revealed that truth, but they rejected both. By faith in Him one entered the Kingdom of God.

The hidden implication was that the visible Kingdom of God was yet in the future.

Jesus then addressed his disciples regarding the unfolding of the coming Kingdom.

He told these men that in future days they would long to see the establishment of the Kingdom. There would be deluded people who would announce his return in various places; they should pay no attention; because the coming of the Son of Man, would be a visible appearance on the earth like lightening.

Jesus tells his disciples that before all this he must suffer many things including rejection by this generation – reference to what would soon transpire in Jerusalem — his trial and rejection, his crucifixion, burial and resurrection.

Then Jesus gave comparison of the attitudes of society on earth. As it was in Noah’s days, prior to the flood. People had turned their back on God’s instructions, and instead were living independent of God. Then they were destroyed.

In the days of Lot, people in that area also had rejected God’s standards and had turned to ungodly lifestyles. Then they were destroyed by fire.

All around the earth, in an instant of time there will be a great separation of people.

The unbelievers who have rejected Jesus Christ, will be taken into judgment and will experience suffering and pain — the fruit of their refusal to accept Jesus.

Those who have professed and evidence faith in Jesus Christ will join him in the newly visible Kingdom of God.

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