Gospel of the King and the Kingdom  (Somebody has to say it!)

 

  1. Kingdom in Volume 3, the 14 Letters of the Apostle Paul.

Just sitting out there at Rosamond CA, in the middle of the Mojave Desert and close to flight test engineering work at Edwards, in the Comfort Travel trailer with a typewriter, and the desire to condense the Bible better in 7 volumes than Carroll did in 17, and In the original writing of the believe and be baptized volume 3 of the LCBCs, in no way was it intended to be a dissertation on the “kingdom”, the Bible research and writing was intended to be on the 14 letters of the Apostle Paul, and indeed it was, but as always in the commentaries of SunGrist, good hermeneutics demanded in context, and even the teachings of Jesus got in the act; of course, which was in turn demanded by the collection of all the New Testament on the word kingdom.  Later, while becoming so frustrated with both the Scofield mites with their futile efforts to distinguish between the kingdom of God and the kingdom of heaven, and books about the subject, it was stumbling efforts much like the many discoveries were made in Physics, to find in previous volumes of the Learn Christ Bible Commentaries, so much on the kingdom.  In volume 3 alone, as running the find search on “kingdom” it showed up 311 times.  Here at the beginning of the King and the Kingdom is an effort to briefly summarize those 311 in volume 3.

 First in 5-7:  Gospel of the King and the Kingdom, page 101.

Later we must get into the Bible on “Gospel” which is also found 274 times in the NT, which should be no surprise as Jesus came “preaching the Gospel of the kingdom”, unlike most preachers today who shudder to join the words in a phrase for fear of the Scofield mites or that they might identify with that crowd since 1909 (publication by Oxford Press of the Scofield Reference Bible with a contract to Scofield to promote the Zealots, something Jesus refused to do).  Scofield was under contract to make a lot of money from Oxford Press to promote the Jews in the establishment of a new modern kingdom (country) in Palestine, and a very shrewd and subtle person this former lawyer was, he realized that his attacks on the real meaning of the Bible had to be focused on THE KINGDOM.  What many of us Southern Baptist, even those not of the Pre-Trib persuasion have failed to both realize and admit publicly until the recent collapse and demise of the SBC is this attack inspired by Satan, Darby, two gays profs of Greek at Oxford University, and the Oxford Press was also an attack on THE GOSPEL itself!   Well, shocking yes, but stop to think if Jesus preached the “gospel of the kingdom”, and Scofield followers after Scofield modified, really distorted, the Bible on the kingdom half of the gospel of the kingdom, then of necessity they were slaughtering almost silently with the Scofield notes the very nature, message, and salvation of the Gospel.  In 1909 and following it was earth shattering almost as great as and simultaneous with Commager’s “Watershed of American Thought” beginning in the 1890s.

Momentarily Backtrack to the “Gospel” in Volume 3, the 274 times in that volume on Believe and Be Baptized.

  1. Of course there was at the beginning the illumination of revelation with the title from Mark 16:15,16.

“And He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.  He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.”  (Mark 16:15,16 NKJV)

  1.  God and the Gospel.  (From the Outline of the Bible, first mention in the Bible of Gospel according to Paul in Galatians.
    1. Genesis 12:1-3 and Galatians 3:8.9.

      (1). With Gods call to Abraham to another land, God gave the everlasting covenant of: (a) From Abram’s seed God would make the great nation of Israel; (b) Through his seed Christ the name of Abram would be great; and (c) Through Abram all the families and nations of the earth would be blessed.

NOTE:  A start of the follies of Scofield and “that sort” of II Timothy is that they strive to confuse the blessing of Israel as a great nation with the blessing on all nations through possible faith in Abraham.

         (2). Paul writes in Galatians 3:8,9 that:

  1. When God said “In thee shall all nations be blessed” God was preaching the Gospel to Abraham;
  2. This all nations meant the Gentiles, or heathen which is the favorite word of the Bible for Gentiles;
  • This Gospel is justification through faith; and
  1. All Gentiles and Jews who believe in Christ becomes the seed of Abraham through faith.
    1. Genesis 15:5,6, Romans 4:18, and James 2:23.

         (1). In Genesis 15:5 God identifies that the seed of Abram will be as numerous as the stars of the sky, and in Genesis 15:6 since Abraham believed God will He said this the belief was counted for righteousness.

       (2). In quoting “So shall your seed be” from Genesis in Romans 4:18, Paul emphasizes how Abraham believed in hope against hope that he would indeed be the father of many nations although he had at the time no sons.

           (3). The Apostle James in James 2:23 reiterates how the faith of Abraham was counted as righteousness, adding that Abraham was called the friend of God.

    1. Genesis 17:5 and Romans 4:17.

         (1). As God changes the name of Abram to Abraham, He says “A father of many nations have I made thee”.

          (2). Paul tells us in Romans 4:17 that this quote from Genesis 17:5 tells us two things about God Himself:

  1. God is a life-giving God; and
  2. God is a God that can call into existence what did not previously exist.

NOTE:  One might also say that this is the beginning of the nations of kingdoms, the ones where by the time of Daniel would enter the everlasting kingdom to go with the everlasting covenant above.

  1. “3-7:  THE GOSPEL. 70”, the seventh major topic in the Bible outline.
  1. The Time Finally came.

Psalm 70-150

  1. Christ in parables told hidden things: Psalm 78:2,24, Matthew 13:35, and John6:31.
  2. The Father charged to angels to care for Christ: Psalm 91:11 and Matthew4:6.
  3. God knows the thoughts of the wise as vain: Psalm 94:11,12 and I Corinthians3:20.
  4. This is the time to hear the voice of God, not hardening the heart: Psalm95:7-11 and Hebrews 3:15; 3:7; and 4:7.
  5. Some things God the Father says.
    1. Of The Son You are Eternal though the earth passes away: Psalm 101:25-33and Hebrews 1:10.
    2. Of angels, ministers and a flame of fire: Psalm 104:4 and Hebrews 1:7,8.
    3. To Son, Sit on my right hand until I make your enemies your footstool: Psalm110:1 and Hebrews 1:13.

NOTE:  There are going to be a lot more enemies of “that sort” in II Timothy than we ever imagined, those of a secret rapture, those of “lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, despisers of good”, those that ever learn and never come to the knowledge of the truth, those that lead silly women captive to false teachings, those to be avoided, and those who will not endure sound doctrine that propagate fables.

  1. That Christ is a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek: Psalm 110:4and Hebrews 5:6,7:21.
  • Believe and Speak.
    1. God made Jesus Lord and Christ: Psalm 110:1 and Acts 2:34,35.
    2. II Cor 9:9 and Psalm 112:9.
    3. II Cor 4:13 and Psalm 116:10.
    4. Romans 15:11 and Psalm 117:1.
    5. Psalm 118:22, Matt 21:42, and Luke 20:17.
    6. Psalm 118:26 and Matthew 21:9.

NOTE:  This mentions gospel and the kingdom, so could not resist jumping into the New King and the New Israel, something that would cause the Scofield mites to choke as counter to what Scofield was being paid by Oxford to do.

3-11:  The New King of the New Israel

  1. Jews and Gentiles as fellow citizens in the new kingdom.

Isaiah 54-66

  1. The unmarried have more children that the married, the Gentiles have more children of God than the Jews: Isaiah 54:1 and Galatians 4:27.
  2. None comes to the Father except as drawn by the Father, and all those who are taught by the Father: Isaiah 54:13 and John 6:45.
  3. God gave in the Temple to the Jews a House of Prayer, but they had turned it into a den of thieves by the time of Jesus: Isaiah 56:7 and Matthew 21:13 and Luke 19:46.
  4. All the nation of Israel that is really the Israel of the children of God will be saved: Isaiah 59:20,21 and Romans 11:26.
  5. Characteristics of the New King of Israel.
    1. The message to Zion is that your new King comes meekly, riding on a donkey: Isaiah 61:11 and Matthew 21:5.
    2. Jesus told them in Nazareth of how the Spirit of God was upon him: Isaiah61:1,2 and Luke 4:17,18.

                  (1). God anointed Him to preach the gospel to the poor. {A King especially for the poor people.}

                  (2). God sent Him to start the release of captives, and to make provisions that the blind might be able to see.

                       (3). To provide freedom for the downtrodden.

                (4). To make a Proclamation as to when is the Acceptable Year of the Lord (the last days) that leads to the One Day of the LORD and Lord.

  1. Happiness in this new kingdom will come only to those who first mourn because of their inability to do it for themselves: Isaiah 61:1,2 and Matthew 5:4.
  • The Method of Citizenship Only That From God, on Gods terms as dictated in the Old Testament and made evident in the New Testament.
    1. The New Citizenship found of those who sought it not or who searched not for the (grace): Isaiah 65:1 and Romans 10:20,21.
    2. Jerusalem is the city of the Great King: Isaiah 66:1 and Matthew 5:33.

Micah

  1. The Christ, the Prophet Messiah, born in Bethlehem, Micah 5:2, Matthew2:5,6, and John 7:42, to be: (1) A ruler of the people; and (2) A shepherd of the people.
  2. The sowers of the Old Testament and the reapers of the New Testament will rejoice together in this New Kingdom: Micah 6:15 and John 4:37. IV. The Good News of the Gospel of the Kingdom preached by messengers.

Nahum

  1. How welcome across the way on the mountain is the first sight of those who come with the Gospel: Nahum 1:15 and Romans 10:15.

Jeremiah 1-30

  1. Yet most do not believe the report, foolish people without the ability to see or hear: Jeremiah 5:21 and Mark 8:18.
  2. God established a House of Prayer but the nation of Israel turned it into a den of thieves: Jeremiah 7:11 and Matthew 21:13, and Mark 11:17.
  3. Trust in God: (1) Whoever boasts, let him boast only in God: Jeremiah 9:24and I Corinthians 1:31; and (2) Trust only in God: Jeremiah 17:5,7 and II Corinthians 11:9.

NOTE:  Assure you the Scofield mites nor even the kingdom were in mind as in about 1990 the Bible was being outlined!  Notice however how the literal Bible itself prevents their beliefs in two kingdoms, the kingdom of heaven and the kingdom of God.  You know, as one of the Southern Baptist group on Facebook told me recently, that Jesus made a mistake in giving the great commission about the kingdom, foolishly claiming as the Scofield mites must do, that Jesus made a mistake (you know this is really denying the divinity of Christ, how foolish)!  This is a good point to let other Scofield opponents list their falsehoods on the Kingdom, something that is too tiring for most of us to do, but for which we are grateful that they take the time to contend for the faith once for delivered to the saints, before 1909 and after 1909.

Just to name one of many, Emma Moore Weston, concludes the false life of Scofield and the publication that caries his name, and in conclusion writes:  The most reasonable interpretation of the work of Scofield is that it is neither honest nor valid.  As such, it should have the whistle blown, for it is properly outside the line of valid Christianity.  It seems many evangelicals are trying to disengage themselves from what now appears to be a tottering wreck, a wreck erected by Darby, Arno Gaebelein and C. I. Scofield.   The Scofield Reference Bible did, and is doing, a great disservice to the Kingdom of God.”

http://fgcp.org/content/terrible-error-scofield-bible

And what we need to do now as brief as possible, is to show something of this disservice to the Kingdom of God and the Bible—

  1. Online in “Scofield’s Notes Versus The Word of God” By Pastor Boffey we read a good common sense comparison between the Bible and Scofield on the Gospel of the Kingdom:

In the footnote to REV 14:6, Scofield makes an arbitrary distinction between the gospel of the kingdom and the gospel of the grace of God. He asserts that the preaching of the gospel of the kingdom ended “with the Jewish rejection of the King.” He further maintains that this gospel will not be preached again until the coming of a time he terms “the great tribulation. {And by the way it is to be preached by the Jewish nation, the same leaders of the millennium, being over one thousand years old.  This is in and out of the earth about as much as the theology and philosophy of Scofield.) Here is another case where the Scofield notes are at variance with the Bible text. Speaking to the Ephesian elders AFTER “the Jewish rejection of the King” and BEFORE the so-called “great tribulation,” Paul said:

“But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God. And now, behold, I know that ye all, among whom I have gone preaching the kingdom of God, shall see my face no more.”  (ACT 20:24-25)

  1. Online is a discussion on the Heresy of Scofieldism that does a good job of summary on the SRB notes:  “In the Scofield Bible, there’s this very complicated explanation about the kingdom of heaven and the kingdom of God: {http://www.sovereignpotter.com/The_Kingdom_Of_God_Or_The_Kingdom_Of_Heaven.html }

“The kingdom of God is to be distinguished from the kingdom of heaven (Mt. 3:2, note), in five respects,”  so writes Scofield in his theological and philosophical notes: (1) The kingdom of God is universal, including all moral intelligences willingly subject to the will of God, whether angels, the Church, or saints of past or future dispensations (Lk 13:28,29; Heb. 12:22,23) while the kingdom of heaven is Messianic, mediatorial, and Davidic, and has for its object the establishment of the kingdom of God in the earth (Mt. 3:2, note; 1 Cor. 15:24,25). (2) The kingdom of God is entered only by the new birth (John 3:3,5-7); the kingdom of heaven, during this age, is the sphere of a profession which may be real or false (Mt. 13:3, note; 25:1,11,12). (3) Since the kingdom of heaven is the earthly sphere of the universal kingdom of God, the two have almost all things in common. For this reason many parables and other teachings are spoken of the kingdom of heaven in Matthew, and of the kingdom of God in Mark and Luke. It is the omissions which are significant. The parables of the wheat and tares, and of the net (Mt. 13:24-30, 36-43, 47-50) are not spoken of the kingdom of God. In that kingdom there are neither tares nor bad fish. But the parable of the leaven (Mt. 13:33) is spoken of the kingdom of God also, for, alas, even the true doctrines of the kingdom are leavened with the errors of which the Pharisees, Sadducees, and the Herodians were the representatives. (See Mt. 13:33, note.) (4) The kingdom of God “comes not with outward show” (Lk. 17:20) but is chiefly that which is inward and spiritual (Rom. 14:17) while the kingdom of heaven is organic, and is to be manifested in glory on the earth. (See “Kingdom (O.T.),” Zech. 12:8, note; (N.T.), Lk. 1:31-33; 1 Cor. 15:24, note; Mt. 17:2, note.) (5) The kingdom of heaven merges into the kingdom of God when Christ, having “put all enemies under his feet,” “shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father” (1 Cor. 15:24-28). Cf. Mt. 3:2, note.”   1917 Scofield Reference Bible  p. 1003  Footnote #1 (to Matthew 6:33)”

NOTE:  What a song and dance routine!

  1. If you have the stomach for it, online is a downloadable PDF on “The Lies of Scofield”.  (They are harder on Scofield than calling them mites, but it is hideous to miss with the Bible for any reason.)  One of the major lies is about the kingdom of God and heaven being different with the kingdom of heaven being primarily of the Jewish Zealots.  The table of lies is good separating in 3 columns, left to right, Bible explanations on the truth, the lies of Scofield, and actual Bible quotes so you can decide for yourself.  Here is their truthful explanation of the lie of Scofield on the kingdom.  The New Testament uses “kingdom of heaven” and “kingdom of God” as clear synonyms  (true and Amen), but Scofield divided them to preserve the Jewish fable of a future kingdom on earth under the Messiah’s reign in Jerusalem. The Holy Spirit’s expressions are wise synonyms, for it was the God of heaven that set up the kingdom, justifying both names (Dan 2:44). John and Jesus used both names to announce the time was fulfilled and Messiah’s kingdom was at hand at the same time. There is only one kingdom, set up by the God of heaven, and it is here to stay (Heb 12:28-29)! Scofield’s fable of a future visible kingdom on earth for Jews is entirely a lie.”  {http://www.letgodbetrue.com/pdf/scofield-lies.pdf }

NOTE:  We will spend most of our time in the real literal Bible of the ASPI, letting the Apostles and Jesus explain what was originally proclaimed by God on earth and recorded in the OT.

  1. “Kingdom” in the New Testament.

The title above we will temporarily borrow from a combination or two or more of the 12 major subjects in our outline of the Bible, although in the course of the development of this chapter on Hebrews and Romans we may desire to modify it somewhat. I hope, at least, it is no surprise to you that we are treating in this chapter, the book of Hebrews and Romans as almost one Gospel according to Paul, the first with an emphasis for the Hebrews and the second with an emphasis for the Gentiles.

6-1:  Where we Have Found Similarities in Hebrews and Romans.

I think you have come to appreciate the similarities between the Gospel in Hebrews and Romans, even as to the Gospel in Isaiah, as we have amassed the passages of such similarity, a short reminder of which is listed below.

  1. Our last discussion of the One Baptism arguments of Hebrews 6 at the end of the previous chapter where Crucifying Christ only once is part of the One Baptism, and how similar that is to a similar lawyer-like discussion of Romans 6 where death and resurrection are only once. Of course, the Bible admits and presents many baptism as “doctrine of baptisms” in Hebrews 6:2, while finally coming based on the extensive arguments of Hebrews and Romans to the One Baptism, an equivalent for salvation, of Ephesians 4:5.
  2. Paul’s criticism, critical but something he also had experienced, in Romans 2 of the Jews in arrogantly claimed to be teachers to the world while they blasphemed God, is similar to the babes in Christ that should be teachers of the first principles of God of Hebrews 5 and 6.
  3. Based on the total internal evidence of the Bible, and this evidence to anyone who will put in the effort to check it, both Hebrews and Romans rely very heavily on quotes from the two large books of the OT, Isaiah and Psalms.
  4. We are still startled by the fact that although in most of Paul’s books, he quotes from the Old, most heavily in the first ten, he quotes from Isaiah only in Hebrews and Romans. Does that tie Hebrews and Romans together as a sufficient commentary or interpretation on salvation in Isaiah, or Isaiah period.
  5. In the 12 major point outline of the whole Bible, three of those 12 are dominated by Isaiah as quoted in Hebrews and Romans. In other words, approximately one-fourth of the Bible story, when you look at the total in topical outline form based on the sequencing of the OT books, is covered by a combination of Isaiah leading into Romans and Hebrews.  Perhaps we should call this chapter, “The Gospel of Isaiah according to Hebrews and Romans.”  You recall those three headings:  (9) The Salvation of God; (10) What happened to the Jews as the chosen people of God; and (11) The New King of the New Israel.

And we will find many more such similarities as we get into the details of Hebrews and Romans in this chapter.  {And to think that some academics and falsely called scholars simply because the have a Ph.D. or Th.D. and belong to the Jesus Seminar–unlike the definition of scholarship as in Emerson’s “The American Scholar”, these foolish victims of men’s wisdom while ignoring the internal evidence of both books, deny that the Apostle Paul wrote Hebrews based on his address to the Jewish synagogues, or that Paul wrote it at all. How foolish!  And I hope that I can be used by God to show once again how “the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God”!}

6-2:  Methods of the Making of History by God.

When we say that “God works in marvelous ways, His wonders to perform” we are saying that we do not comprehend completely the way and ways that God works through history, one of those most significant ways is in the guidance that God performed in the writing of the Book of 66 books called the Bible.  I think you are coming to appreciate how little we have previously understood of how the Ascended Christ in Arabia chose Paul to be chief editor of the NT, writing 14 of the 27 book of the NT and sponsoring with endowed manuscripts 3 more; and beyond that, Paul being personally aware of his own role as a prime custodian in the nation of Israel entrusted as custodians of the oracles of God, used many academic and lawyer-like tricks {these are tricks in a good sense of the word since they were under the inspiration and guidance of the Holy Spirit of Christ, on the way from God and Christ}, in his methodology of writing.  There is not only good evidence that during those so-called 7 silent years at Tarsus, and you know Paul recently converted and on fire with the Gospel and the instructions from Jesus in Arabia not to be the idle type, not only listed a manuscript or manuscripts for all the Old Testament quotes to be included in the NT, but perhaps even wrote the major body of most of the 17 books.  Also included in the manuscripts would be the testimonies of Peter and James to the life of Christ.  You see, this is one reason that I had treat seriously the efforts of Bishop Ussher or any other “scholar” to date the writings of the letters of the Apostle Paul.  They tend to confuse between original writing, editing, distribution, and publication.  It is far better to sequence the 14 letters from Paul in terms of the most numerous quotes from the OT coming down to a summary of the first ten in Ephesians; and with Colossians, Philippians, and Philemon a change from quoting to paraphrasing of the rest of the Bible, his own Scriptures and those of the OT and of other Apostles.  It is maintained that this was his major job, far beyond the significance of even his missionary journeys which we can now see in hindsight.  In other words, Paul through the Bible has influenced far more people than the Gentile world of the Roman Empire of whom he touched a few.

You will have to admit that Paul was quite secretive and subtle about his mythological in the writing of Scriptures; but after all the early Christians were enemies of the State, and any thing written by them, especially by an Apostle, would be considered as subversive.  The Roman Empire and government, even the religious leaders of the Jewish people who killed Jesus, would not be sympathetic to the prime contribution of the Jewish people as custodians of the Oracles of God.  Like Jesus said, what one of the prophets of the OT did the Hebrews not persecuted.  The writings of the Word of God were never popular, except briefly during a short revival, among the people of Israel.  And further more, why would the Apostle Paul add to his own defense as an Apostle of Jesus, out of due time, the additional burden that Jesus placed on him as a chief editor of the NT.  Furthermore why would he need to tell the people, perhaps only Peter who bore testimony to the fact that Paul wrote Scriptures hard to understand, what he was doing during the 7 silent years at Tarsus.  He did ask Timothy to go by Tarsus to pick up the book and manuscripts with a cloak for winter, and to ask Timothy to bring Mark who was profitable to him for the ministry {the ministry is obvious that as chief editor and since he is about to be a martyr, Paul needs John Mark to write the rest of the Old Testament quotes in a Gospel of Mark and Luke, who is still with him, to write Luke and Acts–you see Paul would have recorded in a lawyer-like fashion a log of the missionary journeys}.  Besides, if the Roman opposition knew the plan of God and the plan given to Paul by Christ for all of those 17 books to come together as a NT Canon, with the 39 books they quoted from of the OT, then go beyond the Empire in influence and time, they would have–like those who claim to be gods should–work more diligently to destroy both the letters and the plan.  {I am not even sure that Satan, the prince of this world and the power of supernatural destruction, knew the potential for good and the Gospel that the letters would have as they came together as a Bible, a Canon of Old and New Testaments.  That is, until at least more recently, say within the last three hundred or so years as he like all has seen the Bible go in written form, with the Gospel, to every nation in the world; and it is through the tares of the churches and the kingdom, both academics and non-academics, that he has increasing waged spiritual terrorism as the enemy, as Jesus told in the parable of the tares and wheat, that has put the tares in the field of the kingdom.}  It is out now; and Satan through teachers with “itching ears” is heaping up a vast fortress and army of tare-teachers to give the other tares what they desire as they become intolerant of sound doctrine, and to deceive, if possible, even the elected wheat of God.  And if you can not, based on the parable that Jesus told and explained on the tares and the wheat, see that Satan is the enemy that puts the tares of spiritual terrorism in the churches and in the larger kingdom, then you have missed a deep, Biblical understanding of the Falling Away, and this probably means that you have even neglected completely the doctrine of the Falling Away as part of the Bible.  Certainly, your preachers and teachers have neglected it!

I am going to make another hypothesis here that we will test in the coming chapters; and this is that a thread of continuity to what Paul wrote, and in what he passed on to John Mark and Dr. Luke, is centered around the word and concepts of the “kingdom of God”.  Granted that while “kingdom” is not a dominant word of the writings of Paul like “believe”, “righteousness”, “faith”, law, works, and even “baptism” and “doctrine”, it is a persistent word like a thread that runs throughout all of his 14 books.  Well really, the word “kingdom” per se is only in 9 of the 14 books from Paul:  Romans 14:17 where the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; I Corinthians 4:20 where the kingdom of God is not in words but power; I Corinthians 6:9 where the kind of sinners including the unbelievers are identified as those who can not inherit the kingdom of God; 15:24 where Christ delivers up the kingdom of God to the Father in order that the Father might be all in all; 15:50 where flesh and blood only without the prerequisite 9 month new birth can not inherit the kingdom of God; Galatians 5:21 where any Gentile that does such things so identified by the Apostle, and recognize as works of those without the salvation personal experience, do not have any inheritance in the kingdom of God, with or without a Falling Away or any claims of a re-crucifixion of Christ like the false doctrine of Methodists of falling from grace {and perhaps this is one reason Baptists have been scared away from the Bible doctrine of the Falling Away}; Ephesians 5:5 where those who have not properly learned Christ, by hearing Him personally and being instructed by Him personally, have not inheritance in the kingdom of God; Colossians 1:13, of course being a parallel of Ephesians, where God has translated or conveyed us into the kingdom of “the Son of His love”; Colossians 4:11 where some of Paul’s only fellow workers in the kingdom of God are listed {by the way, if we had time in this commentary, and the time for the proper research, the many names that Paul lists in his books would be another subtle way, especially when cross referenced from book to book and with Acts, to show consistently in the writings of Paul–of course, immediately we see the importance of John Mark, the cousin of Barnabas, and how he is to be welcomed even though the first churches knew of his desertion during the first missionary journey; and of course, good ole faithful Dr. Luke is mentioned also as always with Paul, and how Paul honored by making him the author of two books of the NT, Luke and Acts}; I Thessalonians 2:12 where church members there are encouraged to walk and live worthy of the God who called them into His kingdom and glory; II Thessalonians 1:5 where a similar argument is made of being worthy of the kingdom of God, something that surrounded by tares in our present day kingdom and churches, we also must heed, making some efforts to separate and disassociate ourselves from such enemies of Christ in the churches; II Timothy 4:1 where the twin encouragements to “Preach the Word” are made–first because of the inevitability of Jesus Second Coming and Second Appearance to Judge the living and dead, called at “His appearing and His kingdom” {while Jesus established His kingdom as the kingdom of God while on the earth the first time, it will become obvious as He rules as King over that kingdom at the Second Appearance}; II Timothy 4:18 where Paul, facing trial and execution knows that God will according to His will and plan either preserve Paul as He has done many times previously and as recorded in the book of Acts, or God will make sure that the real Paul is “preserved” for God’s “heavenly kingdom”; Hebrews 1:8 where God at the same time He announces Jesus as His Son, telling all the angels to worship Jesus as such, tells about the scepter of Christ’s kingdom, a scepter of righteousness–explaining that as a habit of Jesus whereby He loves righteousness and hates lawlessness; Hebrews 11:33 is more the secular use of the word kingdom, like many of those in the book of kingdoms of Daniel, where men and women of faith, the many witnesses of acts of faith that surround us like a cloud, subdue “kingdoms”–of course, the major reference to which Paul would be speaking as a lawyer extremely familiar with his own nation’s history would be the kingdoms conquered by the Israelites after they developed during 80 years sufficient faith to subdue, also perhaps the victories of Saul, David, and Solomon; and finally in Hebrews 12:28 where “we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken” when the whole earthly kingdom and universe of earth and sky are completely shaken at the end of this age.  By way of summary, we would have to say that the kingdom of God and of Christ was always in the mind of Paul; and knowing that Jesus teachings had thorough covered the concepts of the kingdom, except for what the Apostle John would add later in Revelation, almost left alone a thorough definition of the kingdom, except in what he left for John Mark to write Mark and Dr. Luke to write Luke and Acts, and what in many cases was based on the OT quotes that Paul left for them.

6-3:  Last Word on the “Kingdom” from John in the book of Revelation.

We should be excited to know the bottom line of the Bible about the “kingdom of God and of Christ” in the book of Revelation.  Surely with the emphasis on Revelation on “last things” or eschatology, it will be talking about the finalized form of the kingdom.  {Aren’t you also curious to see whether it will be called in Revelation, the kingdom of God or the kingdom of Christ.}  If we were to try to trace the development in the Bible of the kingdom of God concept, of course we would look to Daniel and the book of Psalms.  It is Daniel, the statesman of Babylon and Persia, who presents the rise and fall of major kingdoms like Persia, Greece, and Rome; but primarily establishes the kingdom of the “Son of Man” {a favorite name for Christ} in its finalized form, “Then to Him {the Son of Man coming with the clouds of heaven} was given dominion and glory and a kingdom, that all peoples, nations, and languages shall serve Him.”  (7:13,14)}  With the establishment of the everlasting kingdom {the word of Daniel is “dominion”} which shall never pass away (7:14), we see the kingdom of God in its ultimate and finalized form, the same form we know from I Corinthians 15 to be where Christ delivers the kingdom to God the Father in order that God may be all in all.  Can the book of Revelation really go further than that, or does the Ascended Christ and the Apostle John desire to go beyond that in Revelation since there has to primarily be a message of comfort and encouragement for those undergoing the Great Tribulation.  {The Great Tribulation, that period of Matthew 24 foretold by Jesus, as a time that none of the elect would survive except by the shortening of God, was in the first few centuries, but the Final Tribulation, both of which have some similar characteristics, is near the end of the age during the Falling Away, a tribulation that is as much natural, and on all inhabitants, as the universe disintegrates, as the Holy Spirit is withdrawn from the earth allowing Satan to be loosed, as the power of the holy people is completely shattered, and of course, the believing wheat will suffer mentally and spiritually as the love of the many tares waxes cold and sin abounds.}

  1. For the Apostle John like Paul, the “kingdom of Jesus Christ” (Revelation 1:9)was an assumption like water, bread, or light. When John identifies Himself, His location, and what happened to him in exile on the isle of Patmos, he does so as “I John, both your brother and companion in the tribulation and kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ” because he preached the Word of God and gave the testimony of Jesus.  John as those to whom he wrote were companions in the tribulation, something of which during this period it would be impossible to ignore since they were hunted down, tortured, and killed like animals; and at least equal with the tribulation was the concept of the kingdom, here called the kingdom of Jesus Christ.  {Of course we also know it to be the kingdom of Christ way back in Daniel, although Son of Man is used instead of Christ.  However we know during the life and teachings of Jesus on earth about the kingdom, from Jesus it was primarily the kingdom of God; and by the way Jesus also often referred to Himself as the Son of Man.}
  2. Okay since in the next we jump to Revelation 11:15, and we know that to record the most end of all end events, we expect to see the kingdom in finalized form, wondering whether it will be called the kingdom of God or of Christ. {It is almost the same since inevitably according to II Corinthians, Christ will turn the reign all over to God the Father.}  And indeed what we do see here, in settled form although still in our future, is the very act of the kingdoms of this world being turned over to the “kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ”.  {Notice that both are mentioned, and that this is at the sounding of the final and seventh trumpet!}
  3. When we come to look at kingdom in Revelation 12:10, it is the “kingdom of God”, in other words already delivered by Christ to the Father; and you must appreciate the time scale jumps in these last few chapters of Revelation. It is more like the time perspective of God Himself where the future and past intermingle, where something already settled in heaven is as good as settled on earth, and one day is a thousand years and vice versa, and what is happening in heaven or has happened intermingles with earth.  Satan and His angels war with Michael and his angels, the end result is that Satan and His angels are cast out of heaven.  Recall that at the beginning of chapter 12 the war is announced between the seed of the woman and Satan, the same war predicted in Genesis 3:15 where Satan bruises the heel of Christ and Christ bruises his head, a war that continues until the end of the age; but the victory of the kingdom of God and “the power of His Christ” is assured at the very moment of the Crucifixion as this act cast down Satan, along with the work of the angel Michael in heaven, from day and night being an accuser of “our brethren”.
  4. The reference to kingdom in Revelation 16:10 is in the middle of the final dis-integration of this earth, with judgments of the fifth bowl of darkness and pain, where the kingdom of the beast becomes a kingdom of darkness.
  5. In Revelation 17:10 the mention of kings and kingdom is an earthly and secular matter, initially for 10 kings or Caesars of Rome, of course called Babylon for any large and wicked city; but which in the final sweep of time, must be other large and wicked cities of the world. And 17:17 is similar with the awesome warning that the kings of these kingdoms are under the control of God in that He in order to fulfill His own purpose as the Great Maker of History, has put in their hearts and made them of one mind to give their kingdom to the beast, Satan, until the fulfillment of all the end time words of God.

6-4:  “Kingdom” in Luke with guidance from Paul.

First Words from Jesus on the Kingdom of God as Paul guided Luke to Write.  Matthew, where kingdom is mentioned 54 times, or Luke where kingdom is mentioned 44 times {and this would be very close like Mark to the direction of Paul} could be chosen to clarify the teachings of Jesus on the kingdom. We will take a quick look at Luke since his writing was also under the guidance of the Apostle Paul.  In Luke 1:33 the same angel Gabriel sent to Daniel was sent to Nazareth and to the virgin Mary to announce the birth of Jesus, about Whom Gabriel said:  (1) He will be great; (2) He will be called the Son of the Highest; (3) the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David {you know we must later look at Psalms from David to see about this kingdom of David since we know all too well that Jesus refused to set up a secular throne in Palestine exactly like the secular throne of David}; (3) He will reign over the house of Jacob forever; and (4) “of His kingdom there will be no end.”  In Luke 4:5 we are astounded that Satan has the power to take Jesus up on a high mountain and “in a moment of time” show Him all the kingdoms of this world; in 4:43 it is the “kingdom of God” which Jesus says that He must preach to all cities since that was the very purpose for which God sent Him {this is interesting, preach not the gospel of the kingdom of God as Mark begins, but to PREACH THE KINGDOM OF GOD, and how much preaching of the kingdom of God do you hear today? You hear church, you hear denomination, but no kingdom of God–how strange the way our Gospel has drifted from the preaching and teaching of Jesus Himself, it must be part of the Falling Away}; in 6:20 Jesus pronounces the blessing on the poor in the Sermon on the Mount as they are the unique recipients of what, “the kingdom of God”; in Luke 7:28 we see how there was a definite change in the kingdom of God between the last OT Prophet, John the Baptist, and during the teaching and preaching of Jesus like here where He says that even “the least in the kingdom of God” is greater that this among the greatest Prophets–simply because something has happened on earth with the presence there of Jesus {the least or last in the kingdom have become greater than the greatest of the Old Testament, no doubt in benefits}; afterwards in 8:1 Jesus went into every city and village preaching the “glad tidings” of what, “the glad tidings of the kingdom of God” {can we not again today regain the preaching and teaching of these same glad tidings of the kingdom of God, even using that word over church or denomination, instead of this current assault heaped up on our ears by the vast throng of itching ears Bible teachers}; in 8:10 Jesus teaches in parables for the Semipublic as He wants us to know “the mysteries of the kingdom of God” {do you really and sincerely think that there is any less need in this day of vast churches and denominations for us to know the mysteries of the kingdom itself, you see we must wonder about some of these churches and denominations, especially during the Falling Away, but we know the kingdom of God to be of God and of Christ, Amen!}; in 9:2 we read what Jesus sent out the 12 disciples to do, (1) “preach the kingdom of God”, and (2) heal the sick {can we as disciples today preach anything less:  you know somehow we have a concept of historical evolution which tells us falsely that we have so developed in our denominations, that we no longer need to act like Jesus and the disciples–that we have gone beyond that, and that is a large lie from Satan}; in Luke 9:11 that is what Jesus did, He spoke to the multitude about the “kingdom of God” and healed the sick; in Luke 9:27 we have a visual of the kingdom of God, something is going to happen on this earth and during the time Christ is here that will truly mark the real beginning of the kingdom of God on earth, a time in which the least can become greater than the greatest, and since Jesus a few verses before is talking about His death and resurrection, that must place us in the same time zone; and of course, we are somewhat led astray when the verse just before that speaks of the Second Coming since now we know that none of these disciples have lived long enough to see the Second Coming–so we wait and look for more in Luke and the rest of the Bible on the kingdom of God, suspecting, of course, that the reference is to the Coming of the Holy Spirit in great power and glory on the first day of Pentecost after the Ascension, the beginning of the last days and the real time on earth when Satan was bound by the presence here in a large way; in Luke 9:60 called another disciple beyond the 12 telling him to “go and preach the kingdom of God”, so that so far we have Jesus preaching the kingdom of God, the 12 apostles sent out to preach the kingdom of God, and now additional disciples sent out to preach the kingdom of God—at some point we must identify, and I hope Paul like in so many other things on the details of doctrine will help us there, what exactly do you preach when you preach the kingdom of God–in other words, we want an outline of the kingdom of God; in Luke 9:62, the preaching of the kingdom of God is more important than attendance at funerals or at preaching funerals; Luke 10:9,11 as Jesus teaches 70 disciples what to do tells them also to heal the sick and to tell the people “the kingdom of God has come near you”, so that we know the kingdom of God to be very close–we have progressed from Old Testament Prophets the last of which was John the Baptist, to nearness now of the kingdom, and to those who will see the kingdom of God on the first day of Pentecost after the Ascension with the initiation of 3,000 new members into the kingdom; in Luke 11:2 we now what the way we are taught by Jesus to pray that the “kingdom of God” has not yet come, “thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven”, and that the coming of the kingdom of God in the fulness on earth can not be done until the will of God is done by every remaining soul; in Luke 11:17 it is a reference to a characteristic of every kind of kingdom, secular and spiritual, in that if it is divided against itself it can not stand; in Luke 11:18 Satan also has a kingdom, unfortunately his kingdom of tares is less divided than the kingdom of God where the tares grow with the wheat {“the children of this world are wiser than the children of light”}; in Luke 11:20 the kingdom of God has actually come upon Jesus’ generation to the extent that Jesus uses “the finger of God” to cast out demons; in Luke 12:31 we are to seek first and by way of priority over things, the kingdom of God, and by the way God’s righteousness {so I think we have a real key to how to preach the kingdom of God, by preaching God’s righteousness, and something we know especially in Romans, even in Hebrews, that Paul did very well}; in Luke 12:32 Jesus tells His children not to fear as it is the pleasure of God to give us the kingdom–and this is far more we must note than spiritual, no doubt alluding to some of the benefits of the new kingdom in the new earth under the new heavens and with at least visits to the new Jerusalem; in Luke 13:18 Jesus tries to get us closer to an understanding of the kingdom by talking about what it is like–it is like the small mustard seed that grows into a large tree; in Luke 13:20 another likeness to the kingdom, like leaven hidden in a much large measure of meal which it leavens all of; in Luke 13:28 you see the kingdom of God as where Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and all the Prophets are now and will be when those listening die have the opportunity to see them but not be with them; in Luke 13:29 men will come from the east and west to sit down together in the kingdom of God after the end of this age, but also during the time when believers pass away like as Abraham and the Prophets; in Luke 14:15 someone not identified mentions the blessing of breaking bread in the kingdom of God, and I am afraid it is Judas Iscariot, since Jesus quickly tells the parable of the Great Supper where many are invited and make excuses not to come and then the invitation goes out to compel the general public to come in–no doubt, the first that are personally invited are the Jews and the second that are compelled at the Gentiles as we know from Daniel, and Jesus explanations, that shortly after the Messiah was cutoff, Israel was also cutoff; in Luke 16:16 we have another major division of time like that of John the Baptist as the last Prophet and the least in the kingdom greater than John, in that the two divisions now are (1) the time of the law and the prophets right up until John and (2) the preaching of the kingdom of God from that time on with everyone pressing to get into the kingdom of God; and in Luke 17:20 the Pharisees asked a very good question as to “WHEN THE KINGDOM OF GOD WOULD COME?”  Jesus’ answer should help us!

“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.”  (Luke 20,21)

In Luke 18:16 identifies two characteristics of future members of the kingdom of God:  (1) they all have certain child like characteristics in the sense of being led around by God and Christ, or we might say shepherded or even Lorded over; and (2) they all must have the same kind of faith of a little child, trusting and simple and without reservations.  In Luke 18:24 it is hard for the wealthy to enter the kingdom of God because they trust in their riches more than in God; in Luke 18:29 those who lose relatives and land and houses for the kingdom of God in this life shall receive more of them and also eternal life in the life to come; in Luke 19:11 Jesus tells a parable of the “minas” {sometimes called talents} to counter what the people of Jerusalem thought about the kingdom of God, “because they thought the kingdom of God would appear immediately”; and again Jesus is telling the Jews, especially the Jerusalem over which He wept, that the minas given to them shall be taken away and given to the Gentiles with the bottom line of “those enemies of mine, who did not want me to reign over them” (19:27) to be slain before Christ.

In Luke 21:10 as near the end of the life of Jesus draws near and the time allowed for teaching except for the 40 days of appearances after His resurrection, we would expect that if the teachings of the kingdom of God are that important, Jesus will tells us much more; and indeed we do come to many of the eschatological teachings of Jesus, first in 21:10 of the more immediate secular kingdom against secular kingdom which will continue to the end of the Age, then in 21:31 a time for disciples to know that the kingdom of God is near {of course in the sense of the Second Coming of Christ}, those signs like the fruit of the fig tree have previously been identified by Jesus as the sun darkened, the moon, the stars, chaos and distress between nations with the shaking of heaven and earth, second in 22:16 during the Lord’s Supper that Jesus will no longer eat of the Passover until the kingdom of God is fulfilled.

“When the hour had come, He sat down, and the twelve apostles with Him. Then He said to them, With fervent desire I have desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer; for I say to you, I will not longer eat of it until it is fulfilled in the kingdom of God.”  (Luke 22:15,16)

The key word is “fulfilled” for the kingdom of God which although inside us now is completed at the Second Coming of Christ.  Of course, it keeps get fuller and fuller and nearer and nearer during the life of Christ, with the three thousand saved in a single day on the first day of Pentecost after the Ascension, and on through the thousands of years until today, no doubt the growth of which will be slowed down during the Falling Away as the power of the holy people is completely shattered, and there will be a period of refinement; but I am sure, some measure of continued growth event though the Holy Spirit is withdrawn from the earth, the only remaining Holy Spirit being in the heart of believers, however after the Second Coming as all believers are gathered by the angels across the universe, there will be a vast multitude that no man can number of kingdom members.

What did we miss of Luke on the kingdom?  Luke 22:29 where the 12 apostles {a slight modification, of course, after Judas fell by transgression} will each receive a kingdom like Jesus does from God.  They will sit on 12 thrones judging the 12 tribes of Israel at the time when the first shall become last, and vice versa, the least the greatest, and vice versa.  Beware, you TV performers of taking for yourselves the great places in the kingdom, and you of large churches and denominational leadership, beware of taking the first places, you just very well can be in the kingdom of God not only a castaway tare but also the least and the last.  And the Joseph of Arimathea, a council member of the Sanhedrin, a just and good man, who dissented in his vote to put Jesus to death also provided a tomb for the body of Jesus is identified by Dr. Luke as a man who “was also waiting for the kingdom of God”  (23:51)

6-5:  Checking the OT quotes in Luke for the concept of the Kingdom.

We know that the primary influence Paul would have on Dr. Luke in the writing of Luke would be in the manuscripts left him, and there primarily in a listing of OT quotes to be included in his version of the Gospel.  Just before we pass from Luke to Acts, we should also briefly check the OT quotes in Luke for what concepts could legitimately be in the mind of the people from the OT when Jesus taught them.  We already know from the start of Luke with the announcement of the birth of Jesus by Gabriel to Mary that the kingdom of Jesus would have no end.  {By the way we already know from the book of Revelation that “dominion”, also from Daniel, is an alternative word for kingdom, and we should consider others.}  If we look through the Tables of the Appendix, our OT book outline of the Bible, checking for Luke references.

  1. The everlasting covenant of God with Abraham that included the land of Palestine for the Jews forever in Luke 1:67-73 and from Genesis 17:7. Although they broke the covenant with God, and besides the several captivities as temporal punishment were banned for the kingdom of God shortly after the cutoff of the Messiah, the covenant of the land remains theirs both through time and primarily after the Second Coming with the 12 apostles shall rule there over the 12 tribes. We have here a prophecy by Zacharias, father of John the Baptist {if John the Baptist was the last OT Prophet then Zacharias was the next-to-the-last}, as he was filled with the Holy Spirit, and as we would expect with other words this will give us much insight into the concept of the kingdom of God.  (1) The Lord God of Israel, about Jesus and John the Baptist, has visited and redeemed His people; (2) God raised up a “horn of salvation” from the house of His servant David; (3) God since the world began spoke through His holy Prophets that “we” should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all who hate us {we do not now yet as to how much Zacharias understood of the enemies, of the real people of God, and of the real nature of the kingdom}; (4) God is going to perform the “mercy” promised to our fathers, to remember His holy covenant {and surely Zacharias must have had in mind how the Prophets had changed the nature, at God’s instructions, to include Gentiles and to include a new inward heart to fulfill righteousness}; (5) Being delivered from their enemies, they might serve God in righteousness and holiness before Him all the days of our lives {so certainly Zacharias knows enough of the OT to recognize the benefits to be eternal, perhaps also that the real enemies are sin, Satan, death, and separation from God}; (6) Zacharias points to his son John as the last Prophet of the Highest who will precede the Lord and prepare His way to give knowledge of salvation {that has to include the kingdom if it gives knowledge of salvation, also of righteousness} to His people, and by the remission of sins; and (7) guide their feet in the way of peace, certainly that peace is the way of the kingdom.
  2. Luke and Jesus quote from Isaiah 6:9, “seeing they may not see and hearing they may not hear”, after Jesus explains that only disciples are to understand the deepest secrets of the kingdom, called “mysteries”; and only the secrets in that God had not made it fully known.
  3. Certainly a King requires a kingdom, but to what extent were the multitude of disciples that Luke writes about in Luke 19:38 correct is saying because of the mighty works they had seen, “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the LORD!” And they must have been right because some of the Pharisees called from the crowd for Jesus to rebuke His disciples, Jesus replied that if they were silent the stones themselves would cry out.
  4. The stone which the builders rejected, selected by God as the chief corner-stone, Jesus quoted from Psalm 118:22, could be a chief cornerstone of a kingdom as well as of a temple. If we look in the context of Psalm 118:22, David does mention “nations”, “gates”, and the nation of Israel.
  5. While neither king nor kingdom are mentioned in Luke 20:42,43 as Jesus quotes from Psalm 110:1 in order for the LORD God with the Lord Jesus to sit on an implied throne there has to be a kingdom for both, and when God through David and with the repeat of Jesus says that He is going to make the enemies of Christ a footstool, that of course implies a rule, reign, and a fulfilled kingdom.

6-6:  The “Kingdom” in Acts and from Paul to Dr. Luke.

Kingdom in Acts is found only 8 times, but I think that we will find those 8 very informative.

  1. For example during the 40 days after Jesus’ Resurrection and before His Ascension what do you think Jesus talked to the apostles about; yes, “speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God” (Acts 1:3).
  2. The Apostles never gave up in wanting Israel to be restored as a kingdom, asking Jesus as recorded in Acts 1:6, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” We don’t know what Jesus thought, only what He said, two things:  (1) it is not for you to know the time and the seasons, only the Father, and I think that perhaps the place of Israel in that kingdom was not for them to know either, although they already knew that the 12 apostles {I think Paul really took the place of Judas as the twelfth Apostle more than Matthias} would rule over the 12 tribes; yet they were asking for more than that, they were asking for a restoration of Israel to a kingdom like David ruled over and on this earth; and (2) they would receive empowerment from the Holy Spirit to witness to Jesus over all the earth.  {I wonder if Jesus did not decide that very moment to call the Apostle Paul to make clear the full implications of the kingdom of God.}
  3. We have a unique opportunity for a precise definition of the preaching of things concerning the kingdom of God (Acts 8:12) in Samaria, because before this summary statement there is a description of the preaching of Philip there. Let’s see, what Philip the evangelist preached was:  (1) the word (8:4); (2) Christ (8:5); and (3) the healing which he practiced like Jesus said in the Great Commission would happen.
  4. Saul and Barnabas on the first missionary journey and at Derbe where “they preached the gospel to that city and made many disciples” (14:21,22) went back to the cities of their journey like Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch where they strengthened the souls and exhorted them to continue in the faith centered around the teaching, “We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God.” Thus the entrance was for the future though still within us, and the way of entrance was through many tribulations.  It reminds one of the teaching of Jesus about the narrow way that leads to life eternal, the way few go, and the broad and easy way that leads to destruction with the many which go that way.
  5. Well, things concerning the kingdom of God must not be quick and easy; because Dr. Luke tells us in Acts 19:8 how it took Paul 3 months, on his second missionary journey, to reason and persuade the synagogue there “concerning the things of the kingdom of God”. Some were hardened and did not believe, further they spoke evil of “the Way”.  Paul took the disciple from the synagogue to a certain school of Tyrannus where Paul taught for 2 years, all of Asia, Jews and Gentiles, hearing “the word of the Lord Jesus.”
  6. When Paul called the Ephesian elders to Miletus for a Pastor’s Conference, what he wanted them to remember was his preaching of the “kingdom of God” (Acts 20:25) as he told them that they would see his face no more. And once again we have a more detailed description from Paul himself to the pastors of Ephesus on what that preaching was in the account of 2);17-38:  (1) the way Paul lived was part of his preaching, serving the Lord with all humility and with many tears and trials caused by the plotting of the Jews; (2) Paul kept back no teaching or doctrine from them, teaching publicly and from house to house; (3) preaching repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ to both Jews and Greeks; (4) chains and tribulations await him in Jerusalem; (5) Paul wants to finish his race with joy, not counting his life dear to himself; (6) Paul wants to finish “the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus” {and what do you think that ministry might include, the instructions in Arabia received from Jesus Himself?}; (7) Paul declared the “whole counsel of God”, being therefore innocent of the blood of all men; (8) the Holy Spirit has made these pastors “overseers” of the flock, and they are to take heed to that flock and to themselves; (9) they are to “shepherd” the “church of God”; (10) the church of God is that which Jesus purchased with His own blood; (11)  Savage wolves will come in among them and the flock, scattering the flock; (12) Also men will rise up from among the flock who speak perverse things; (13)  These men will speak these perverse things in order to draw disciples after themselves; (14) Watch and remember how for 3 years Paul warned everybody night and day with tears; (5) Paul commends the brethren to God and to the word of His grace; (6) this word and grace are able to build them up and to give them an inheritance among all those who are “sanctified”; (7) Paul did not love money and did not covet anyone’s silver and gold or their clothing; (8) with his own hands Paul provided for his necessities and for the necessities of those with him; (9) Paul showed by example and in every way, by laboring, that you must support the weak–indeed, this is the cup of water of Jesus that Paul took seriously; and then quotes to that extent from Jesus (10) that it is more blessed to give than to receive; and (11) Paul knelt down and prayed with them.  We are in for exciting things as we look into Hebrews and Romans for these things pertaining to the kingdom, and with OT quotes, for we see that the preaching of the kingdom involved much more than thought at first.

6-7:  Our Bible Outline on the Gospel of the King and the Kingdom.

Indeed, I think after this preliminary context of the Bible on the kingdom, especially in the teachings of Jesus, we are really to get into the teachings of the Apostle whose ministry it was to make things clear based on the Old Testament, and whose ministry it was to personally write 14 out of 27 of the NT books, sponsoring 3 others.  We will do it in much the same manner that the Apostle Paul started his research for those books during the 7 silent years at Tarsus where he recorded on parchments all the OT quotes that he would later include in books.  Of course, we have that body in our total Bible book outline of the Appendix, but now we focus largely on where Paul quotes from the OT in Hebrews and Romans.  We found a large bulk of that was in the 3 out of 12 topical outline based on the book outline, and previously decided that for now that can be summarized as the Gospel of the King and the Kingdom.  Those three sections of the topical outline are included here for further development and expansion.  {You will also recall that the topical outline comes from chapter 3. The three sections are actually treated and continued in the next chapter, “Gospel of the King and the Kingdom”, primarily from Romans and Hebrews.}

6-8:  “Believe” in the Letters of Paul Continued.

  1. Galatians 3:6. The necessity of salvation of baptism by faith is not new in the New Testament. In the Old Testament Abraham believed God, and that belief before there was any written law or religious practices was counted by God as righteousness.  That is the primary way Abraham has become the father of many nations.  We Gentiles need faith in God like Abraham had!  As a matter of fact so do almost all of the Jews.
  2. Galatians 3:22. You didn’t think of the Bible as placing a confinement or restriction or binding on our lives.  Yes, it confined us under sin; so that the Bible like a schoolmaster might bring us to faith in Christ for salvation, not trusting in corrupt selves as a way of salvation; the promise of faith in Jesus Christ, given to Abraham, and to all who believe becomes a God-preferred method of salvation.
  3. Ephesians 1:13. You trusted in Jesus when you heard the word of truth; you recognized this as the good news or Gospel of your salvation, and “having believed” you were sealed in the one baptism “with the Holy Spirit of promise”.
  4. Ephesians 1:19. We who believe have not begun to tap the resources of the one baptism, the full extent of the greatness of God’s power toward us.  Put that in your Biblical statement of faith.
  5. Philippians 1:29. Even as I and II Timothy can be called the presentations of bad church behavior with many human frailties of church members and unsound doctrines mentioned, so Philippians can be called as you will find in the chapter on Philippians, the letter of  good church behavior.  You have been given two privileges as a church member if indeed you are a member of the Assembly of Christ written in heaven:  (1) to believe in Christ; and (2) to suffer for Christ.
  6. I Thessalonians 1:7. You know the books of Thessalonians to be about last things like the Second Coming and what must come before that on the world scene in the Falling Away and a visual of the son of perdition, the even more horrible prospect of what will happen in this world with the rising tide of the flood of the mystery of godliness as the Holy Spirit is withdrawn from the world scene.  All these things inspire us like the church members at Thessalonica to become examples of all those who do believe!
  7. I Thessalonians 2:10. Paul was concerned about the way he, Timothy, and his companions behaved among those who believe, another example for church members where the most violated scripture of all the Bible is generally, “do not think of yourselves more highly than you ought to.”
  8. I Thessalonians 2:13. Down in their heart listeners to itching ears Bible teachers today, if Jesus is already there as the Word of God is effectively working in those who believe, they know that the word is not from God.  Popularity will not cut it in this day and time of the Falling Away.  Instead we work to be heard and read by a few, a remnant of the remnant if you would, who have that effective working inside.  To write a best-seller testifies to the curse of popularity and the Falling Away of “the time will come {has come} when they will not endure sound doctrine”.
  9. I Thessalonians 4:14. Here is another good statement of faith for your beliefs:  we believe that believers should not sorrow for the death of loved ones like unbelievers as we have faith to believe, according to the Bible, that even as Jesus died and rose again as a foundation for the resurrection for others, that God will bring with Jesus as His Second Coming those who have gone to sleep in the faith of Jesus.  Comfort one another at funerals with these words.
  10. II Thessalonians 1:10. In that great Day of the Lord, at the Second Coming of Jesus, God takes vengeance in fire on (1) all those who do not know God and (2) all those who do not obey the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ.  The worse part of that punishment is to be forever banished from the presence of God and from all the glory and benefits of His power. At that Day, God comes in Jesus to be glorified among all His believing saints.
  11. II Thessalonians 2:11. Your statement of faith must include some realities about the extent of the Falling Away among church members.  Among those who do not believe the truth truly, and they are many, there is strong delusion.
  • Gospel of the King and

Kingdom:  Romans and Hebrews.

7-1:  Our Bible Outline on the Gospel of the King and the Kingdom.

Indeed, I think after this preliminary context of the Bible on the kingdom, especially in the teachings of Jesus, we are really to get into the teachings of the Apostle whose ministry it was to make things clear based on the Old Testament, and whose ministry it was to personally write 14 out of 27 of the NT books, sponsoring 3 others.  We will do it in much the same manner that the Apostle Paul started his research for those books during the 7 silent years at Tarsus where he recorded on parchments all the OT quotes that he would later include in books.  Of course, we have that body in our total Bible book outline of the Appendix, but now we focus largely on where Paul quotes from the OT in Hebrews and Romans.  We found a large bulk of that was in the 3 out of 12 topical outline based on the book outline, and previously decided that for now that can be summarized as the Gospel of the King and the Kingdom.  Those three sections of the topical outline are included here for further development and expansion.  {You will also recall that the topical outline is found in chapter 3.}  The three subjects were respectively:  (1) what happened to the Jews as the chosen people of God?; (2) the salvation of God; and (3) the New King of Israel.

7-2:  Divine Glory, Human Pride, and Self-destruction.

In this section we look particularly about this subject in Romans 1-3 & Hebrews 1-6. {We can never appreciate how much better the new covenant  and the new sanctuary is than the old, how much easier it is for the children of Jesus not to fall like the children of God in the wilderness, until we see how much better our priest is than theirs, Jesus Christ the High Priest.}  Before we proceed deep into Romans and Hebrews guides by the 3 sections of the topical outline of the Bible, we need to determine how much Isaiah and God through Isaiah put in that book in the first place.  In other words we need to both get a total feel for the subject content of Isaiah and make ourselves a simple outline. Isaiah is the most quoted prophet in the New Testament, and I think you have already noted some of its eloquence as compared to Jesus in Matthew.  John Oswalt writes of Isaiah in the NEW INTERNATIONAL COMMENTARY, “a revelation of the inevitable conflict between divine glory and human pride, of the self-destruction which that pride must bring, and of the grace of God in restoring that destroyed humanity to himself.”  And you can see how Paul would get a similar total message from reading Isaiah at Tarsus with the blinders removed, then writing notes for Romans 1 on the downward spiral of civilizations as “they knew God, but honored Him not as God”, and of how “God gave them up to a reprobate mind to do that which is inconvenient”.  And also it was a similar pride of the Jews of Romans 2 that led them to blaspheme God all over the world; and that would guide Paul in Romans 3 to prove that “all have sinned and come short of the glory of God” {it is here in Romans 3 that you will find quotes from Isaiah and Psalms, and of how the name of God is blasphemed among the nations is a direct quote from Isaiah 52:5, also from Ezekiel 36:22.}  Do we then have an outline heading for Romans 1-3 which also correlates with Isaiah, and which might be called something like “Divine Glory, Human Pride, and Self-destruction”, Romans 1-3?  And if so where would we have a similar section in Hebrews?  In a way, the whole book of Hebrews apart from Jesus as the High Priest is the story of the falling away of the Hebrew children in the wilderness because of unbelief, so that in order to narrow down to the cause in pride, and based on Isaiah, we must look at Hebrews more carefully.  For example, can we find the word “pride” per se in Hebrews when we look at a complete concordance? No, pride is more an individual sin than labeled as a national sin in the Bible, but certainly in Hebrews 3 the “going astray in their heart” of the Hebrew children in the wilderness is an equivalent of national pride.  Hebrews does not outline 1-3 like Romans, the first 2 and 1/2 chapters must be considered a positive and straightforward presentation of the Son of God as King {although King is not mentioned, the concept of reigning, dominion, and subjection is there} with His kingdom {called His assembly} with a challenge to a faithfulness from the children of Jesus comparable to the faithfulness of Jesus Himself; then in 3:7-15 that awesome condemnation by God after He tested His original children in the wilderness that “they shall not enter My rest”. (Hebrews 3:19)

Hebrews 4:1-13 cautions present day children of Jesus not to fall into the same hardness of heart, and “hardness of heart” would be an equivalent of pride, and more.  You no doubt have noticed that the great subject of Jesus as High Priest with the supporting lawyer-like arguments from the OT and Paul start in 4:14-11, and continue in 6:13 thru 8:6.  The little interlude between 5:12 and 6:12 would be the equivalent of the Jewish chastisement of Romans 1-3, although the focus on Hebrews is less general here, being directed to the contemporary Hebrews, as you would expect, where Paul delivered his synagogue message.  Therefore:

  1. Divine Glory, Human Pride, and Self-destruction (Romans 1-3 and Hebrews 5:126:12)
  2. The de-evolution of civilizations that start off with a knowledge of God then without thought and honoring of God spiral downward to the point that God gives them over to a reprobate mind, Romans 1.
  3. Because of the history of the Jewish people and how they let God down, they blasphemed the name of God throughout the Gentile world, Romans 2. They claimed God to be there God, and indeed He was at one time, but by their lack of faith in God, what happened inevitably to their nation was the blasphemy of the name of God. We might briefly look at this in the context of the book of Isaiah, Isaiah 52:5; and what we find is by the mention of both the bondage in Egypt and the captivity in Assyria that the other nations of the world are saying, “God is the God of Israel and yet He can not take care of them”, thus causing the name of God to be blasphemed among the Gentile nations.   Indeed God could take care of them, and God did take care of them during the short periods when they kept the old covenant with Him, so that the real culprit was not a lack of power and love in God but rather in an “evil heart of unbelief” in the children of Israel.  Exactly what God had in mind is found in Ezekiel 36:22, where in captivity God through the Prophet Ezekiel promises a restoration of Israel to their own land.

“Moreover the word of the LORD came to me, saying:  Son of man, when the house of Israel dwelt in their own land, they defiled it by their own ways and deeds {there, obvious is how it all started, during that approximately 1000 years in Palestine, or whatever it was called at the time, they defiled the land “by their own ways and deeds, and in a minute God is going to tell us through Ezekiel that the restoration of them to their land is going to be in order to protect His own name–of course, we know that He needed to get them there for Christ to be born, likewise another way in which He promoted and protected His own name}…”

“…to Me their way was like the uncleanness of a woman in her customary impurity. {pretty crude example but we get the picture} 

“Therefore I poured out My fury on them for the blood they had shed on the land {now, we get the bloody picture}, and for their idols with which they had defiled it.  {Israel actually defiled the chosen land of God, and I don’t know if I will ever understand why God loves that particular land so much} The fury of God on the land in two ways:  (1) the innocent blood of their own people and strangers in the land that they unjustly spilled on the land; and (2) by setting up places in the land for the worship of the idols.  Does God care more about the land than the people?  No, I don’t think so; it is only that He blesses and curses the land and the people at the same time, and that He does it based on the good and bad behavior of the people.  You must see in idols a violation of the first commandments of God, and mistreatment of the people as the violation of the rest of the ten commandments!

HERE IS WHAT GOD DID AND NOBODY ELSE, because He only is the Great Maker of Nations and History–”So I scattered them among the nations, and they were dispersed throughout the countries; I judged them according to their ways and their deeds.”

“When they came to the nations, wherever they went {the northern kingdom of Israel was scattered into Assyria and the southern kingdom of Judah was taken captive into Babylon and Persia}, they profaned My holy name–when they said of them {okay here it comes, exactly how Israel blasphemed the name of God and what Paul back at Tarsus read for later writing of Romans}, ‘These are the people of the LORD {what a sorry looking lot, the nations were saying}, and yet they have gone out of His land.’  {We must acknowledge that land as God’s in a special way even though we now Israel to have been cutoff from God shortly after they cutoff the Messiah.}

“But I had concern for My holy name, which the house of Israel had profaned among the nations wherever they went.  Therefore say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord God:  I do not do this for your sake, O house of Israel, but for My holy name’s sake {don’t forget at any time that Jesus was the seed and the namesake of God the Father}, which you have profaned among the nations wherever you went.”  {Paul certainly did not exaggerate when he skirted over this with one short verse!}  “And I will sanctify My great name, which has been profaned among the nations, which you have profaned in their midst; and the nations shall know that I am the LORD,’ says the Lord God, ‘when I am hallowed in you before their eyes.’”  {when any of the children of God are living in such a way as to bring glory to God, God is hallowed in the eyes of the people and nations around them}

  1. The Son of God and His children of the house of God and the assembly, His ministry as High Priest, and how those present children could fall away from the living God as the children of Israel did in the 40 years of wilderness wanderings, Hebrews 1-8:6.

(1).  The Son of God, Angels, man, and salvation.  Hebrews 1:1-2:9.

(2).  The children whom God gave to Jesus, Hebrews 2:10-5:11, and the provision of a competent High Priest to keep those children as faithful as Jesus was faithful in the carrying out of His obligations to God.

(3).  It is a worrisome sign when the Hebrews can not be real spiritual teachers, having the need to look again at the first doctrines of God, Hebrews 5:12-6:12. It comes close to being a blasphemy of the name of God of Romans, Isaiah, and Ezekiel.  We know the famous saying, “if you can’t do, then teach”; well, the equivalent of what God is saying and God through Paul is, “if you can’t teach then you can’t do!”

  1. There is none that can claim to be righteous, Jew or Gentile, for “all have sinned and come short” of what God meant for humanity, Romans 3.

7-3: Appendix OT Book Outline of the Bible on Romans 1-3 and Hebrews 1-6. 

{By the way you know Paul and how his lawyer-like arguments run on and on across chapters and verse, remembering also that the chapters and verses came much later and were not part of the original manuscripts; there will be serious overlaps, and an outline is only for our convenience to somewhat isolate the subjects in order to eventually get at the same truth.  What I am saying is that there are many ways to outline Romans and Hebrews as you know, and as I have done in previous commentaries.  And these are not efforts to impress you with the complete Bible outlines that have been made during the writing of Bible commentaries over the last 20 or more years, but just to allow both of us to benefit from the Bible research of the past.}  Recall that the OT book outline of the Appendix is different from the Topical Bible Outline of chapter 3 primarily in that the OT quotes of the Appendix outline relate more to the Gospel.  Of course, expect a lot of overlap as both outlines came from a complete outline of the OT in the NT arranged in a most probable outline of OT books.  While you will notice that in our Bibles, the major Prophets regardless of historical periods are grouped together, likewise the minor Prophets, and the literature of praise and poetry, so on and on.  Well, in the outline of the OT quotes, the controlling column of their location in the OT, runs from Genesis to Malachi in a more probable historical sequence.  It was from this top outline, generated in my original ONE Commentaries, that a topical outline was developed, and based on that outline, of the Bible.  {That is the one you see in chapter 3.}  Now, the Gospel outline of the appendix, likewise has the more historical sequencing; however, the quotes are less and more selective in that they center around the Gospel in the Old and New Testaments.  However, you must see from your Bibles that there is not a large difference between the total message of the Bible and the Gospel of the Bible.  It is only that the Gospel in the Old and New Testaments is a subset of the larger total story of the Bible.

Scanning through those 12 tables of the Appendix from Genesis to Malachi, we find that Romans 1-3 and Hebrews 1-6 are found 17 times:  (1) Hebrews 1:5 from Psalm 2:7 with Matthew 3:17 and Luke 9:7; (2) Romans 2:6 from Psalm 8:4-6; (3) Romans 3:10 from Psalm 14:1-3; (4) Hebrews 2:12 from Psalm 22:22; (5) Hebrews 1:11 from Psalm 42:1; (6) Hebrews 1:8 from Psalm 45:6,7 {notice by the way how most of these quotes stand-alone; that is only in Hebrews and Romans, and if it were not for the life and writing of Paul, we would never have had the Christian interpretation of those OT quotes, that is not the ASI, but that is one of the major reasons Jesus called Paul to the ministry}; (7) Hebrews 3:15 from Psalm 95:7,8; (8) Hebrews 3:7 from Psalm 95:7-11; (10) Hebrews 1:7 from Psalm 104:4; (11) Hebrews 1:8 from Psalm 104:8,9; (12) Hebrews 1:13 from Psalm 110:1 {and can’t you just see Paul at Tarsus reading through the book of Psalms as listed above from say 44 to 95 and 110 making notations on a research manuscript for later incorporation into letters, then checking them off as they were included, but finding in prison that he had some that still needed to be utilized to write three additional books of the Bible, one for John Mark and two for Dr. Luke, perhaps even one for the Apostle John}; and (13) Hebrews 5:6 and Hebrews 7:21 from Psalm 110:4–and here we must briefly pause since we have an obvious overlap between Hebrews and Romans much like those that were mentioned at the beginning of chapter 7.

What is so significant about the subject of Psalm 110:4 that Paul would duplicate his efforts by quoting the same verse in both Hebrews 5:6 and then in Hebrews7:21?  First, we should look at Psalm 110:4, and perhaps even in the larger context of Psalms.

“The LORD has sworn and will not relent, you are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.” (Psalm 110:4)

Melchizedek is introduced in Genesis 14:18 where as king of Salem, also the priest of the Most High God, he brought out bread and wine to Abraham, blessed Abraham, and then received tithes of Abraham.  And I hope you have certainly seen the importance of children of Jesus not falling away like the children of Israel in the wilderness because the children of Jesus have the High Priesthood of Jesus.  He was in all points tempted like as we are yet without sin; He was declared to be the Son of God by God Himself and made higher than the angels with the angels as His ministers; He was appointed by God to reign at His right hand with the large haul plan of putting all His enemies as His footstool {it is difficult to know whether to call this the long haul or not since while it was long in history from before the Creation of the earth and man through all the sins and ups and downs of the chosen people of Israel, through the kingdom of Jesus which He made obvious on earth, through the great commission of believe and be baptized being carried across the earth, to the Falling Away; however, eternity is so much longer than those thousands of years that in an eternal perspective it may not seem like a long haul}.

And the last four quotes in Romans 1-3 and Hebrews 1-6 are:  (14) Hebrews 2:13 from Isaiah 8:17; (15) Romans 2:24 from Isaiah 52:5; (16) Hebrews 5:33ff from Isaiah 66:1; and (17) Romans 1:17 from Habakkuk 2:4.

7-4:  17 Old Testament Quotes in Romans 1-3 and Hebrews 1-6.

This will have to be a Rapid Subject Scan of those 17 quotes from the OT in Romans 1-3 and Hebrews 1-6.  It would require far too many pages of this commentary to list those seventeen passages from both the Old Testament and Romans and Hebrews. Instead I will read through them in New Testament sequence, first Hebrews and then Romans {the most probable order of writing for Paul or at least original development as the book of Hebrews is obviously his synagogue address}, with the total context scanned in order to get first a gist of the OT context, then a gist of the NT interpretation by Paul, and lastly a summary of the gist of both.  Perhaps you as a reader with your Bible at hand would like to do the same thing.  After all, this commentary, volume 3 of the LEARN CHRIST commentaries is considered to only be a study guide to the Bible.  Each must read and study the Word of God for himself!

  1. Hebrews 1:5 and Psalm 2:7. {By the way does it sort of surprise you that a beginning quote in the first chapter of Hebrews, would also come from one of the first chapters of the book of Psalms, like Paul was reading through Psalm and made a note for the beginning of a book of Hebrews.}

(1).  A gist of Psalm 2:7 and the context:  Although we do not know for sure when the “today” was that God made the decree that Jesus was His only begotten Son, we know at least it had to be before creation of the universe since Jesus was there as the mediating cause {John 1}, but we know also from the context of Psalm 2 that God has already decreed all the nations as Jesus inheritance and the ends of the earth for His possession.  This, without a use of the word king except to mention the kings of the earth who had best kiss the Son while they can, is an inheritance of kingship and an everlasting kingdom as you see from such words as “He shall break them with a rod of iron” and “He shall dash them to pieces like a potter’s vessel” (Psalm 2:9)  While we do not see that yet, and did not see it when Jesus refused to fight during His first life on earth; we will see it when He comes again, not so much with fighting but rather in the use of the forces of nature as the old universe disintegrates and in the use of the angels to gather all humanity for judgment at the Second Coming.  {You remember how the angels will gather the sheep and the goats, separating them, the tares and the wheat separating them; and then Jesus will pronounce the group judgment.  I am sure the angels based on the roll call of the book of life in heaven have studied and taken there assignments before they deploy to the four corners of the earth.}

(2).  A gist of the ASI of Hebrews 1:5:  the context is that Paul shows how much greater Jesus is than the angels, amassing one quote after another from God decreed Him begotten and His Son from Psalm 2:7 to the Father and Son relationship of II Samuel 7:14 to the call for the angels of God to worship Jesus of Psalm 97:7 to how serious even the angels are as ministers of fire of Psalm 104:4 to Jesus as the King of the Kingdom of Psalm 45:6,7 with a scepter of righteousness to a reminder that how Jesus was there as part of Creation in Psalm 102:25-27 right up to domination with His kingship and kingdom as all enemies become His footstool of Psalm 110:1.  {Did you notice how that also generally progresses through the book of Psalms, and by the reading of Paul, from Psalm 2 to Psalm 110 with only a few minor permutations that Paul found necessary in order to present the arguments like a lawyer that he was.}

(3).  A gist of both summarized:  As great as is the subject of Jesus, His Kingship and His Kingdom, Paul knows that Christians can read this for themselves in the OT, but what he wants to do for us is to show how that is in order “to minister for those who will inherit salvation” (Hebrews 1:14), wow!  It is of course, a very introduction to the book of Hebrews and to the message that he delivered to the Jewish synagogue {I guess their favorite word was Hebrews} all over the Roman Empire.  You do not need to fall away as the Hebrews did in the wilderness as you have so much more going for you with the angels as ministers, with Jesus as your perfect and competent high priest at the perfect position on the right hand of God to make intercession always for your sins, with the perfect new covenant and the perfect new tabernacle, and with so many examples of faith for you like a large cloud of witness.  How can you lose, if you beware of a possible “evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God”.  You can get a “god” whom you can deceive yourself and your church into thinking is the real God, a God unlike that of the Bible and of Jesus, that allows whatever you want; but he or it is not the living God like Phillips warned in “Your God is too Small”.  {In this day and time a “god”, not living except inside contemporaries, has been made of conscience–I do what my conscience tells me to do–which accuses and excuses like it should, but imperfectly; and that American conscience with the weight of the American Democratic Faith has been placed as a substitute for the living God.}

  1. {Since we effectively covered all those quotes of Hebrews 1 above, we will pass on to Hebrews 2 and following.} There are 3 great quotes in Hebrews 2 with some greater ASI:  Psalm 8:4-8 in Hebrews 6-8 where the glory, praises, and dominion of man over the works of creation are saluted–a work that is still incomplete in that “now we do not yet see all things put under him” (Hebrews 2:8b), so that we know the promise of that is still to come in Hebrews; Psalm 22:22 in Hebrews 2:12 where Jesus establishes an assembly where He praises the name of God before His chosen brethren {that is an assembly and worship service where we would like to be when Jesus praises God as we are in the congregation, but that is one of the main points that Paul is making–we are, we are in the assembly of the firstborn that Paul comes to in Hebrews 12, and that is what we have come to as we have gone through the truth of the 12 chapters of Hebrews}; and third  Isaiah 8:17, 18, and II Samuel 22:3 in Hebrews 2:13.

“And again:  ‘I will put My trust in Him.’  And again:  ‘Here am I and the children whom God has given Me.’”  (Hebrews 2:13 with Isaiah 8:17,18 and II Samuel 22:3)

  1. That is a good introduction to Hebrews: here we are, us and Jesus, and that is exactly what Paul encouraged Jews with night and day when he had the opportunity. It either is or can be, You and Jesus!  It is also a good introduction to Hebrews and Romans as the Gospel of the King and the Kingdom as the King is introduced here as the Reigning Son of God, and the kingdom is introduced as us, the children of Jesus. What exciting things remain for us to see in Hebrews of how through Jesus, and under the plan of salvation from God, we mortals who have been ordained to have dominion over all the things of the earth, will ultimately have all these things put under us.  This in Hebrews is truly the equivalent of Romans 8 and the thought that “all things work together for good for those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose”.  (Romans 8:28)

7-5: “Man Dominions” of Hebrews and “all things work together” of Romans.

In particular we look at the similarities of the man dominions of Hebrews with the all things work together for our good of Romans.  I think we will find some of those same things of Jesus, God, and the Holy Spirit, predestination, foreknowledge, and the calling working together for us in both Romans and Hebrews; and this is another overlap, perhaps even a major focus point between Hebrews and Romans.

  1. First we look at the similarity of thought of Hebrews 2:8-18 and Romans 8. Obviously when in Hebrews 2:8 Paul quotes from David to the extent that God has “put all things in subjection under his feet” {and you recall how the first commission of God to man was to have dominion over all His other works of Creation}, then immediately saying after the quote to the extent THAT WE DON’T SEE IT THAT WAY YET, and that you immediately suspect that what we do not have dominion over is death, sin, and eternal life which before Paul discusses those very things in Hebrews 2:14-18, he must show in the context how Jesus and Us have come together, “I and the children whom God has given me”.  Hebrews 2:14 mentions how that Jesus as He accepted this oneness with us, partaking of flesh and blood, was able to establish dominion over (1) the power of death; (2) over the fear of death which held humanity in bondage that prevented real victory over the earth and the things of the earth; (3) over the devil himself; and (4) over sins in that Jesus Himself with that full identification with man also became “propitiation for the sins of the people” (2:17); and (5) provided help in the temptations that come this way on earth.

7-6:  Now, how similar is that to Romans 8? 

In other words what are “the all things” of the “all things that work together for our good” of Romans 8?  God gave the first commission to man to have dominion over the earth at the moment of the creation of man as recorded in Genesis 1:26.

“Then God said, ‘Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth….Then God blessed them, and God said to them, ‘Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.’”  (Genesis 1:26,28)

And God renewed that first commission to man by way of Noah after the Flood as recorded in Genesis 9:1,2.

“So God blessed Noah and his sons, and said to them:  “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth.  And the fear of you and the dread of you shall be on every beast of the earth, on every bird of the air, on all that move on the earth, and on all the fish of the sea.  They are given unto your hand.”  (Genesis 9:1,2)

This first commission is echoed with different words in Psalms 8:4-6 as quoted in Hebrews 2:6-8, and we especially see that with the last words of that quote, in the “And set him over the works of Your hands”, amplified by the following sentence of “You have put all things in subjection under his feet”.  There is an astounding significance to the way the argument flows by Paul in the rest of verse 8 as Paul explains “put all things in subjection under his feet” {and you hear Paul talking in the same kind of wording as of II Corinthians 15 where all things are put in subjection under the feet of Christ, but excepted is God the Father}, but as yet we do not see all things put under Man.  We stop to wonder whether Man Himself or the Son of Man, the Lord Jesus Christ, is going to do this; for we know that immediately Paul launched back off into Jesus:  made a little lower than the angels when coming to earth, like man is a little lower than the angels; and for suffering and death in order that Jesus might taste death for “everyone” (2:9)  God, the argument continues, chose the method of bringing “many sons to glory” to make Captain Jesus, the captain of their salvation, perfect through sufferings. (2:10) Jesus calls them “brethren” because He and they “are all of one” (2:11), Jesus is the He who sanctifies and they are the sanctified.  The children partake of flesh and blood (2:14), Jesus shared in the same; that through death He might destroy him, the devil, who had the power of death {we often think of Satan or the devil as the prince of the power of the air, seldom do we stop to think of him likewise as controlling the power of death}; and release the brethren from the fear and bondage of death (2:15).

“Therefore, in all things He had to be made like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people.  For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted.”  (Hebrews 2:17,18) The real question is that in all of the rest of Hebrews, and also where else in the whole Bible, is there a repeat of the argument of the second half of 2:8b, based on the quote of 2:8a.  First, we will check for the key words of “subjection under his feet” of 2:8b.  The only close similarity we find in Hebrews is in 12:9 where the subjection is of the children to God the Father, who like earthly fathers chasten us, but the Heavenly Father to make us partakers of His holiness.  However, we do in Romans 8:18,19 see a similar argument from Paul of passing from a lack of dominion over all things on the earth to a dominion over death and sin. {It is only complete in considering all the way from 5:12 through 8:39.}

“For I consider the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.  {Rather than from the perspective of all men trying to have dominion on the whole earth, it is a more a present time start with the sufferings of this earth–which could be close to the things not overcome–and then progressing all the way to the glories that shall be revealed in our future of eternal life, of course which we most generally call “glorification”.}  “For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly awaits {and certainly you can see in this reference to creation some of the first great commission to have complete dominion, though now it is an inward thrust, an eager expectation} for the revealing of the sons of God.”  {You can not miss how the brethren here become also the sons of God, much like Jesus.}  And this is consistent with the Apostle John.

“But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God {we also like the KJV of “sons of God”}, to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.”  (John 1:12,13 NJKV)

7-7: Some Definitions in Romans 4-8 and Hebrews 7-12:2.

Definition of Righteousness by Faith, Peace, and the New Covenant, and New Sanctuary, Romans 4-8 and Hebrews 7-12:2.  The argument above of Romans 8:18,19 continues all the way to the “all things work together for our good” of 8:28 in the following manner:  (1) the whole creation was subjected to futility by God, but by God in hope, and it is that whole creation that will be delivered from the bondage of corruption {you see the similarity of the Hebrew argument of under dominion instead of over it} into a glorious liberty of the children of God {of course you see the children of Jesus that are called brethren and which Jesus identifies of Hebrews in this}; (2) the whole creation together–the earth, the man, the woman, the animals, the plant life, and the forces of nature–like a woman in birth pangs “groans and labors” (8:22) right up to this very moment of time of the life of Paul, and the assumption is that will continue in time until the end of the age {by the way talking of more of the similarities between Romans and Hebrews, we have here in the “whole creation groaning and laboring with birth pangs” a similarity to Hebrews 12:25-29 where the whole heaven and earth will be shaken; and also by the way, what shall we receive in that passage of Hebrews but “a kingdom which cannot be shaken” (12:28)}; (3) we that have the firstfruits of the Spirit {the new birth, of course is the first fruit, the process of Christlikeness called sanctification is the continuing fruit, and the final fruit is the glorification when we shall be like Christ for we shall see Him as He is} also groan inwardly like the rest of creation groans as we look forward to the complete redemption of our physical bodies; (4) The Holy Spirit helps us during these struggling’s and makes intercession for us; (5) Jesus in touch with the Spirit makes intercession to God for our sins.  Now, these are all the things that work together for the good of those who love God and are the called according to His purpose.  For this point, and in 8:28-30 it progresses passes from (1) the purpose of God to (2) the foreknowledge of God of those whom He would call from before the foundation of the earth to (3) the predestination of God for those called to be conformed to the image of Christ, Christ the firstborn and the others His brethren sounding again like Hebrews to (4) the Christian calling with the hope of the one calling to (5) the legal justification in the sight of God to (6) the glorification.

NOTE:  We are in the process of receiving a kingdom, although within us now and can not be seen as it is in heaven, can not be shaken like this old earth and heaven will continue to shake until disintegration, because this kingdom of God and heaven and which will be lowered form earth to heaven is unshakable, much like God Himself.

  1. From this point of harmony between Hebrews 2:8-18 and Romans 8:18-39, we can proceed backwards through the rest of Romans 8, then 7, then 6, and then 5:12-21 thru the argument developments of respectively (1) Sonship through the Spirit, the adoption; (2) freedom from inward sin; (3) freedom from the law; (4) slave hood to sin or to God; (5) death to sin and alive to God; and (6) death in Adam and life in Christ.

(1).  We are the Sons of God if we are led by the Spirit of God, Romans 8:12-17.

(2).  Freedom from the condemnation of God if we live according to the Spirit instead of according to the flesh, Romans 8:1-11.

(3).  Jesus Christ will deliver us from this body of sin and death, Romans7:13-25.     (4).  Another dominion that has been overcome is that of the law, Romans 7:1-12

(5).  From a slave to sin to a slave to righteousness, Romans 6:15-23.

(6). The One Baptism by which we are baptized spiritually into the death and resurrection of Christ Himself, Romans 6:1-14.

  1. Again working backwards to cover all of Romans 4-8, we go from 5:12-21 as the last part of the above through the rest of 5:1-5 on how faith triumphs over trouble, after considering the short passage of 5:6-11 where Christ died for the ungodly; then to 4:9-25 where Paul makes another legal argument, this time of how Abraham was justified before circumcision; and then right up to 4:1-8 on justification by faith.

7-8: The Word “Baptism” in the New Testament.

Since we have discussed “believe” more than “baptism” in the chapters since chapter 4 on BAPTISM, this would be a good point at which to look at all the references in the New Testament where “baptism” is used.  The word in the King James Version is found 23 times in the New Testament, and it is easily grouped into several major divisions.

  1. The Baptism message from John the Baptist, both a water baptism and an immersion (baptism) in repentance before water baptism.

(1).  Matthew 3:7.  When John the Baptist saw Pharisees and Sadducees, the religious leaders of the day, coming for his baptism (s), he called them “vipers” and told them to bring to the water baptism a prerequisite of “fruits worthy of repentance.”

(2).  Matthew 21:25. (also repeated in Mark 11:30 and Luke 20:4) When later some of these same religious leaders , this time the chief priests and elders, questioned the authority of Jesus to deliver His teachings, asked them whether the “baptism of John” had the authority of being from heaven or from men.

(3).  Mark 1:4.  (also repeated in Luke 3:3) You have in this verse the two distinct baptisms of John, not unlike the two baptisms into Jesus of water baptism with a prerequisite baptism of salvation:  (a).  Water baptism, “John came baptizing in the wilderness”; and (b) Baptism of repentance, “and preaching a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins”.  Since there is some repentance in real faith and some faith in real repentance, you would have to say that the two baptisms of John the Baptist were almost the same as the two baptisms from the Apostles.  However, where there is any element of doubt such as Paul encountered in believers who had only know the two baptisms of John, then they were more carefully instructed on salvation and then baptized.

(4).  Luke 7:29.  There were cases of people, like the tax collectors, who having participated in the two baptisms of John the Baptist, were doubtless saved in that they “justified God”, those two baptisms having, Jesus taught, come from God; and there were the opposite cases of the Pharisees and lawyers who rejected “the will of God for themselves” by rejecting the baptism of John the Baptist.

(5).  Acts 1:22.  This baptism of John was as much a part of the Gospel of Jesus Christ that an Apostle selected to take the place of Judas Iscariot must know about as well as all that Jesus did and said in the presence of the disciples, from that beginning time of the Gospel until the Ascension, and witness of the Resurrection.

(6).  Acts 10;37.  We must be careful that those who know only the baptism of repentance of John, sorrow for sins toward God, know also the baptism of faith of the Gospel.  What is most important again, is not the two water baptisms, but the inward baptism of both repentance and faith.  The Apostle Peter does in this verse in telling what has just happened in Israel make a fine point of distinction between “the preaching peace through Jesus Christ” and the start of that preaching that God gave Jesus “after the baptism which John preached”.

(7).  Acts 13:24.  You can also see in the early preaching of the Apostle Paul in Antioch in Pisidia that fine point of distinction between before the coming of Jesus, when “John first preached before His coming the baptism of repentance to all the people of Israel”, and the point in history after that when Jesus made His public appearance to John and Israel, where the message of John became more that he was not the Christ but the Christ came shortly after Him.  In order to participate in the One Baptism of salvation, it is important to know both repentance toward God and faith toward the Lord Jesus Christ; and then water baptism is to be an enacted sermon and act of faith in a work that comes behind it.  And then if there was any question as to whether that one baptism of salvation actually happened in the individual because they did not hear all the words of faith necessary for that salvation to happen, then after they really hear and believe, let them be baptized again.  Baptism by water and immersion is so easy; and while it has nothing t do with salvation, it should be done properly and only after sufficient faith baptism.

(8).  Acts 19:1-5.  When Paul re-baptized disciples at Ephesus, it was after they admitted that they did not receive inwardly the Holy Spirit which always comes with the One Baptism.  In other words, it was obvious that there was no real salvation in their life.  Unfortunately, the Pentecostals in just one of their major departures from sound doctrine–and they have many similar violations of Scripture as given in I and II Corinthians all generated by a unjustified pride in the uniqueness of their church membership such as “the Word came out of them”, “the Word came to them only”, “everyone has a song, a prophecy, or a word”, worship that draws attention to themselves, has an uncertain sound and breeds confusion, and a speaking in tongues which are not really languages, always of questionable motivations–have run amuck with a baptism for salvation and then a second blessing baptism of the Spirit. No, the consistent message of the Bible is that the One Baptism of Salvation is also an immersion of the Holy Spirit, most often called the new birth.  Of course, the work of the Spirit does continue through the many years, however not instantaneous, as He works to make the believer more Christlike.  In all these cases sound doctrine dictates:  first comes the Baptism of Salvation, and then comes Water Baptism.

  1. Jesus used the word “baptism” for immersion to refer to the blanketing of persecutions that would come His faith in rejection and crucifixion, which also would be the type of immersion that the Apostles would have.

(1).  Matthew 20:22 and 20:23 (also repeated in Mark 10:38 and 10:39 and Luke 12:50) refer to this kind of baptism of the cross and suffering that the Apostles would share with Him.

  1. The Baptism of Salvation, the One Baptism.

(1).  Romans 6:4.  As Paul’s great treatment and definition of the One Baptism in Romans 6 and Romans before he refers back to it in Ephesians as the One Baptism, and where by the way as discussed in this commentary where all the great basic doctrines of the Bible are mentioned as “ONEs” and where there is not One for salvation.  There is no need, that is the One Baptism.  Read Ephesians 4:4-6 and then come back to Romans 6 to define the one baptism.  Well, here is some of it:  (1) when we are “baptized into Jesus” we are baptized into the death of Jesus–another way Paul says this in Galatians 2:20 is that “we are crucified with Christ”.  How are we crucified with Christ?  When we go down into the river or the baptistry to be immersed, or even when we have a nudge to start speaking in tongues?  No, how can we be crucified in water or speak tongues in water!  (2)  Even as Christ was raised from the dead by the power of God, so are we in the new birth raised by the power of God to walk the style of a new life.

(2). Ephesians 4:4-6, the Great Major Doctrines of Faith.  Ephesians is a condensed summary of all the 10 letters that Paul wrote before it with the great truths, teachings, and doctrines of the Christian Faith, and Ephesians 4:4-6 summarizes in turn Ephesians.

“There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called in one hope of your calling; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.”  (Ephesians 4:4-6)

Is there only one baptism in Scripture; certainly not, there is only one major baptism that exceeds all the others in importance because it is the salvation of God.

(3).  Colossians 2:12.  In this similar language of Romans 6, “buried with Him in baptism”–by the way the message of Ephesians is also repeated in Colossians, so that Colossians like Ephesians is a summary of the first 10 books including Romans–you have a comparison of this salvation not only in terms of a one baptism but also for emphasis in terms of a “circumcision without hands”.  Even as the one baptism is a baptism without any words and any hands, so also is the one baptism like an inward circumcision where no hands works on the flesh and there is no work on the flesh.  You are reminded again of Peter’s statement about “not the putting away of the filth of the flesh”–in other words no water involved in this baptism–but rather the inward answer of a good conscience toward God.  So much of this distortion of water baptism as part of salvation, or as necessary for salvation, has come from the desire of church leaders, primarily at first the Catholics and then the Episcopalians and Lutherans and Anglicans and now the church of Christ and even others, to have control over and a part in your salvation.  Do not let them!

(4).  Hebrews 6:2.  This talks of the “doctrine of baptisms” {plural for baptisms} in such a way as to visit up to the realities of many baptisms in the Bible; but also in such a way with “doctrine”, the singular, to note how they are related.  Does this allow for any such deceptive thing as a “baptism in the Spirit”, so called by the Pentecostals, which comes after the one baptism of salvation and even after water baptism. No!  However it does allow as you read the context of the rest of Hebrews for a complete immersion in the Spirit over a period of time which most generally in Scripture is “sanctification”–a life long process-most often referred to, especially in Ephesians, as a growth into the full stature of Christ.  The problem with these Pentecostals is that they want sanctification instantaneously; they want to have the pride of a second blessing as unique Christians beyond what others have as they like the Gnostics gain a spiritual knowledge not possessed by other church members; and they want instant and easy evidence that they are the real children of God.  {You see that over and over in I and II Corinthians.}

(5).  I Peter 3:21.  You saw the exegesis of this in chapter 4 in this famous Scripture from the Apostle Peter of how the One Baptism is not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, therefore having nothing to do with water baptism.  Well, not nothing; they are related as one doctrine of many baptisms to the extent that the opposite of salvation, the immersion of the whole world in a flood, is related to the one salvation.

In order to completely digest all this Bible meat on the kingdom in Volume 3 and more, you will surely want to free download it from SunGrist at www.sungrist.org/GospelKingKingdom.pdf .

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