The Kingdome of God

D L Henderson
5 min readSep 7, 2023

September 7, 2023

Why am I wasting your time with this topic? Actually, I hope I am not wasting anybody’s time, including my own.

First, my purpose is to clarify the Bible so people get the right message, so they can develop a clear picture in their minds of what the Bible is, in order to be able to make well-defined, intelligent decisions about God, Jesus, and the Bible itself.

Second, most nations nowadays don’t have kings which estranges us from the basic idea of the Messiah (Christ) as King, and we reject the requirement of turning to Jesus to rule or have dominion in our lives. Why would I turn my ship over to some Harbor Pilot who didn’t have proper credentials?

The Bible, especially the New Testament, has eyewitness accounts providing the readers with plenty of evidence of Jesus’ full credentials. And turning our lives over to God is exactly what the Gospel of Jesus requires. And that is a hard request when you don’t have a modern map with accurate information.

“Kingdom” in the original Greek Bible text pictures something a bit different than the English: The word “kingdom” is a translation of the Greek word “basileia” which in turn is a translation of the words “malkuth” (Hebrew) and “malkutha” (Aramaic). These words do not define kingdom by territory but by dominion. Jesus said of the Kingdom of God that one cannot say, “Look here it is!” or “There it is!” Luke 17:21. According to C. H. Dodd, the common translation of “malkuth” with “basileia” in Greek and hence “kingdom” in English is therefore problematic… (newworldencyclopedia.org).

From another site (biblestudytools.com/lexicons/greek), “Basileia — royal power, kingship, dominion, rule… not to be confused with an actual kingdom but rather the right or authority to rule over a kingdom.”

Referring back to the Creation Story in Genesis, the old King James Bible uses the word “dominion” in verse 1:26, “And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion…” while most modern translations use “rule over” as in the New International Version, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”

It isn’t about a dictator controlling us. It’s about us allowing God to take His proper place in our lives.

There used to be a bumper sticker that said “God is my Copilot.” This says to me that God exists to rubber stamp the driver’s navigational decisions.

However, it is God’s world that He gave to us, and we should realize that He knows the proper use of it and how we can live fully and effectively.

There are many examples in the real world which prove we haven’t a clue about using the gift of God’s green Earth or how to live life — even minimally.

Climate change proves we don’t know this world’s proper use. Pollution of air, and the pollution of Societies, people’s uncontrollable anger, jealousy, mass murders, the political chaos, and the like, prove we don’t know the first thing about living fully and effectively.

Not to mention, where’s the love?

The Greeks had at least 5 words for “love.” English has hundreds of words for love, but basically there are only two: “like” or “love.” The rest, as in the Greek language, are about levels of intensity. (see, MerriamWebster.com)

Unfortunately, English also has hundreds of words for “dislike” and “hate.” (ibid)

So many choices. So little time.

Likewise, I’ve encountered two basic attitudes toward God, Jesus, and the Bible. It is really a false dichotomy: God is good/God is bad.

If you look at the main characters of the Bible. Those who were caring, living to please God, had good relationships with Him. Those who were opposing God, living hurtful lives, had little or no relationships with God. The first gives credit to God for their lives, while the second blames God for theirs.

I have found in my little sphere of discourse, people get mad at God and blame Him for any and all negative experiences in their lives — whether or not they even believe God exists. I guess that would be a conundrum for atheists and agnostics. You’ll have to ask them how they rationalize themselves out of that philosophical corner they have painted themselves into. Nevertheless, they are especially sensitive to encounters with Christians and are more than willing to tell them what they should or shouldn’t believe — even without listening to what they have to say about the whats and whys of their beliefs. They also tell them how Christians should talk — even whether they should even talk at all. They tell them how they should act — even though they never look at how they themselves are acting. They can never explain why they believe the way they do except from a place of pain — pain that Jesus would relieve and heal — if only they would go to Him and ask politely,

Some people will try anything to get away from the horrible pains and the messes of this life. From drugs to simple distractions, but much worse, too many look to suicide as a way of escape. I know, because I did. I know now how fortunate I was not to have succeeded. I was fortunate, many people are not.

So, now, because I didn’t succeed, I am able to share this with you:

Jesus said, “Yes, I am the gate. Those who come in through me will be saved. They will come and go freely and will find good pastures. The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them{the sheep} a rich and satisfying life.” (reference, NIV, John 10, verses 9 and 10).

Nota Bene — “They will come and go freely…”

(I hope you don’t mind being referred to as sheep.)

“All of us, like sheep, have strayed away. We have left God’s paths to follow our own. Yet the LORD laid on him the sins of us all.” — Isaiah 53 6, New Living Translation.

So, the answer to my rhetorical question, “Where is the love?” “This is real love — not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.” — 1 John 4:10, ibid. (Note: “sins” = “hurts.”)

Here’s something significant to ponder: Chapter 53 of Isaiah is recognized as a prophetic foretelling of the sufferings of the Messiah, Jesus of Bethlehem. It was written somewhere around 750 years before His crucifixion. Seven hundred fifty years. Hundreds of years before He was even born! I think everyone should read it for their own enlightenment and edification.

Read the Bible and seek a personal relationship with God and Jesus,through the Bible — especially what Jesus said and did. I hope you discover that it is not merely an intellectual exercise.

It could be life changing… if you allow it.

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D L Henderson

Born 1950; HS 1968; Born again 1972; Cornell ILR; Steward, Local President/Business Agent; Husband, father, grandfather; winner/loser/everything in between