Are we in the kingdom of God? Yes. Are we in the fullness of the Kingdom of God on Earth as it is in Heaven? No. Are we anticipating the expansion of the Kingdom of God on Earth? Yes. Are we expecting that the fullness of the kingdom of God on Earth requires the King to move to Earth and live? No.
No? Wait a minute! Are you saying that Jesus isn’t returning to Earth? No. Are you saying that we can have a kingdom without a King? No.
We have a King. He is with us here and now. We have the kingdom of God here and now. We do not have the fullness of the kingdom of God in Heaven. And we never will.
The “Not Yet, but Later” idea misses the entire point about the kingdom of God. It says the spiritual kingdom is not as real as the physical manifestation of the spiritual kingdom. That kingdom will always be spiritual with a physical manifestation. The issue at present isn’t whether or not we have the kingdom or the manifestation of the fullness of the kingdom, but the hiddenness of the glory of the kingdom. We must discuss the influence of the kingdom of God in the Earth as a kingdom instead of ignoring the kingdom of God as if “church” substitutes for it until the physical return of the King.
What? We never will? No, we will never have the kingdom of God on Earth as it is in Heaven because we will have the kingdom of God on Earth as the representation of the kingdom of God in Heaven.
Heaven is spiritual. Earth is physical. The kingdom of God on Earth is a physical manifestation of a spiritual reality. We will have glorified bodies when the fullness of the kingdom of God becomes available on Earth. We will manifest the spiritual reality of ourselves physically when the kingdom of God becomes fully manifest physically.
The limitation put upon the Kingdom of God here and now by doctrinal idolatry explains “not yet” with the promise of “later on” to explain why we do not have the fullness of the kingdom of God on Earth until we have glorified bodies. It ignores the fact that we have a King, He is with us, and He does not have to move to Earth to be King or manifest the Kingdom of God on Earth.
The very issue at the heart of this discussion is human beings representing the King in manifesting the kingdom of God on Earth. The point is not Heaven on Earth.
Here is what we mean by that “Heaven on Earth” thing:
- Mistakenly saying “Heaven on Earth” instead of or when we mean to say, “the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth.”
- Mistakenly assuming that Heaven is a place, physical or spiritual, that is “other than” in terms of accessibility to Creation.
- Mistakenly assuming that Heaven is a place to go to after we die. “With the Lord” isn’t a place but a condition that changes when the body is no longer a limiting factor to the condition.
Never sing “Heaven on Earth” without assuming Heaven on Earth is the kingdom of Heaven on Earth.
The Beginning and The End
The Beginning of Creation is God on Earth with Man representing God in the kingdom of Heaven on Earth. The Beginning is the ending in the same sense with a significant update. The first Adam is not the model of Man representing God in the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth.
It is technically inaccurate to say, “We are going back to Eden on Earth.” We cannot go back there. We cannot be Adam and Eve. We cannot have what they had. That is all gone forever.
It is True that “We are going to be like Jesus on Earth. We are being conformed to the image of His Son, the Second Adam. We are going to have what He has. This condition will last forever because the Second Adam cannot fall or fail, and we will be like Him.”
The End will be the same as the Beginning in that Man will lead the kingdom of God on Earth as the Representative of God in the Kingdom of God in Heaven.
The Dwelling-Place of God with Man
What is the dwelling place of God with Man that John saw in the Revelation of Jesus Christ? It is the fullness of All that Jesus provides to Creation so that God in on Earth with Man representing God in the Kingdom of God on Earth.
God was with Adam and Eve in the Beginning. God is with us in the End.
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first Heaven and the first Earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of Heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with Man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also, he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” And he said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty, I will give from the spring of the water of life without payment. The one who conquers will have this heritage, and I will be his God, and he will be my son. But as for the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, as for murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death.”
Here we learn what is included and what is excluded from the kingdom of God on Earth. We see kingdom culture. We hear God discuss what will be, how it will become that way, who will be include or excluded. Here we understand that what God started, God will finish. We meet Alpha and Omega in Kingdom Come.
All that is not what this describes can only be available when redeemed Man has a glorified body. All that is described here is already real in spirit. It cannot manifest without Man representing God as Man represented God at the Beginning of the Creation.
Man is not going to rule the Kingdom of Heaven or share the Throne of God. Man isn’t becoming God. Man is becoming Man as Jesus Christ is Man. Jesus is the God-Man, and we shall be like Him as He is Man, not as He is God.
God will be with Man as He was with Adam, but the condition of Man will be like Jesus, not Adam.
The city John saw appeared to be prepared as a bride would be for her wedding day. This prophetic picture is not describing physical reality but spiritual conditions.
Man is Jesus. Eve is the Ecclesia. The Ecclesia is the governing function of the kingdom of God on Earth that will be glorified Man representing God in a new condition. The Ecclesia is, here and now, redeemed Man representing God in the present state.
The only difference between here and now and fullness of the Kingdom of God on Earth is glorified Man.
There is no basis for saying, “We have no kingdom now because we have no King with us.”
The King is the One who promised He would be with us, that we should ‘behold’ that, and this ‘with us’ condition would continue until the end of the age. So, the King is with us, and the kingdom of God on Earth is here and now.
The dwelling-place of God is already with Man. It is not manifested physically because that would require glorified man. It is not a matter of Jesus being manifested in His Glory, but Man being manifested in his glory.
Consider the statement of Jesus describing the Transfiguration, an event that occurs before the Resurrection. Consider the purpose of that revealing. Consider the message sent by that experience.
“For the Son of Man is going to come with His angels in the glory of His Father, and then He will repay each person according to what He has done. Truly, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in His kingdom.”
“You shall see the Son of Man” note His description of Himself as Man Incarnate. He does not say they will see the Son of God” transfigured even though He is the Son of God. “Arriving in His kingdom.”
Jesus coming in the glory of His Father is not the same as Jesus coming in His kingdom.
He is changed before their eyes. They saw Him in His kingdom. This is Kingdom Glory before the glorified body of the Resurrection. We have this glory in us, continued to be conformed to the image of Jesus. We are transformed by gazing at His glory this same glory of His kingdom.
“And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is Spirit” (2 Corinthians 3:18).
The view of Revelation that John describes is the Glory of kingdom representing God with Man representing God in the Kingdom of God on Earth.
Jesus is not more available then than He is now. He will be seen, however, as He is not seen now in His kingdom glory.
Do not picture kingdom glory as manifestations of bright lights as much as kingdom glory as the physical manifestation of the spiritual reality. That manifestation is not future in the spirit. It is future in the physical. It will manifest when redeemed Man has a glorified body.
Jesus has a ministry that produces this glory. This glory will be physically manifested in the dwelling-place of God on Earth.
“Now if the ministry of death, carved in letters on stone, came with such glory that the Israelites could not gaze at Moses’ face because of its glory, which was being brought to an end, will not the ministry of the Spirit have even more glory? For if there was glory in the ministry of condemnation, the ministry of righteousness must far exceed it in glory. Indeed, in this case, what once had glory has come to have no glory at all, because of the glory that surpasses it. For if what was being brought to an end came with glory, much more will what is permanent have glory” (2 Corinthians 3:8-11).
We teach and believe that any physical manifestation of this condition remains future, while the spiritual condition revealed to John is as real as it can be here and now.
How Then Shall We Do Kingdom Here and Now?
We represent God on Earth now as much as we will represent God on Earth then. Instead of standing in a garden with authority, we stand at a gate with authority.
God planted a garden for Adam and Eve from which to be fruitful, multiply, fill and subdue the Earth, and take dominion over the animal, vegetable, and all other life. They had dominion by physical glory over physical Creation on Earth. They did not represent God in the Heavenlies, where God rules represented by angels. They represented God on Earth, where God rules represented by Man.
When Genesis 1:1 says God created the Heavens and the Earth, God wasn’t creating Heaven where God is because that is a condition God produces with His very Existence. We speak of God in Heaven because God says He rules the Heavens and gives Man dominion on the Earth.
No, we do not have dual passports. We do not get ready to live in Heaven while on the Earth. We are not going to Heaven at all. We are not discipled here so that we can go there.
These assumptions become the presuppositions for explaining the kingdom as something future when it is here and now or not at all.
If the King is here and the kingdom is now, what we do with spiritual authority and power manifests in the Earth without the ultimate restoration of physical Creation as cultural transformation.
If all Creation is waiting for God’s inheritor children to be glorified, and there are not inheritor children in your region of the Earth, maybe the real issue is installing a Remnant in your region for the moment when God’s inheritors will be manifested as His Representatives with glorified bodies.
They are God’s representatives here and now for the Kingdom of God on Earth because the kingdom culture prepares and positions them to use kingdom keys from a position of superior spiritual position in the region.
The Ecclesia provides the region with kingdom leaders at the gates. That is the kingdom on Earth here and now authority and power. That is what Jesus says He builds with kingdom citizens. Jesus calls prepared and positioned people into a posture so they can be His building, body, and bride.