Heirs of the Kingdom

 
50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption. I Cor 15:50
 
The scripture above is so often misunderstood by Christians that it bears closer examination with an open mind and a receptive spirit.  The first misconception is the notion, held by many Christians, that our inheritance in Christ Jesus will be claimed in the afterlife.  It is very important to understand that in the Spirit, just as in the natural, it is the testator’s death that enables his heirs to inherit, not the heir’s death.  In fact, if an heir dies without finding out about his inheritance, he simply loses what could have been enjoyed in this life.  Sadly, such is the fate of millions of Christians who go to the grave in ignorance of what was rightfully theirs through the death and resurrection of Jesus.  As the scripture says, truly His people perish for the lack of knowledge.
 
Many Christians that do understand that the kingdom of God is for this life often cling to dispensational doctrines that declare that the kingdom is for another time (when Jesus comes back to rescue us), another place (old Jerusalem), or for another people (natural Israel).   However, the inconvenient truth that does not fit into dispensational doctrine is that the kingdom of God is within us.  The “flesh and blood” mentioned in this scripture refers to our adamic nature and natural genetics, not our physical bodies.  Nobody inherits the kingdom simply by being a natural Jew or a natural anything else.  In the context of this scripture, Paul is drawing the distinction between the natural man, Jew or Gentile, and the spiritual man who by virtue of being born again has the seed of God growing within him.  The kingdom is within him and he is a citizen of God’s kingdom without having to wait for any future event.  King Jesus, who scripture declares seated himself on the throne of David at His resurrection (see Acts 2:30-31), has made his habitation in us.  He does not need to seat himself on any man-made throne in a man-made temple constructed at some future point in time.  If we allow His life to take us over, we will rule and reign with Him right now.
 
The Old Testament experience of the children of Israel as they entered the promised land provides a metaphor for us in understanding our inheritance and how to take possession of it.  (It is instructive that the punishment for the disobedience of the generation that left Egypt was death.  Physical death was not portrayed by God as the entrance into a reward but rather as a mark of falling short of the promise.)  Canaan in the Old Testament was a mere figure of our true inheritance.  It amazes me that Christians identify the kingdom with a sliver of desert land in the Middle East.  When God commanded the children of Israel to fully possess the land by destroying the occupants, he was pointing to an inheritance that cannot be measured in square miles or geographical boundaries.  He was pointing to our dominion over all the earth.  This dominion will be accomplished as we learn to rule and reign over every aspect of our being – spirit, soul and body – in His Name.
 
In a very real sense, we are the promised land and our physical body is the earth that is inherited by the meek or those who manifest His Nature.  Just as the children of Israel had to go into every corner of the promised land to dispossess the ungodly inhabitants, we need to walk this inheritance out by subduing every enemy of God within us. The last enemy of the kingdom to be conquered is the death that is working in our physical bodies.  Rest assured that there will be a people who will experience this and will reach this mark of the high calling that Paul strove for.  In order to reach that goal, God’s people need to develop an overcoming faith and they need to be delivered from the doctrine of devils that has put His promises just out of reach when in reality they are available to those who have the faith to attain them and the burning desire to walk in the fullness of our inheritance.
 
May the following poem bless you and add to your understanding of God’s mysteries:
 
The Kingdom
 
It cometh not with observation, He said
Which interpreted means this:
His coming will not be televised.
CNN will not provide live coverage 24/7.
He will not be on the cover of Newsweek.
Christian, please don’t bother booking your ticket
To Jerusalem to see him seated in a man-made temple.
 
His coming (unto them that look for Him)
Is an inside job.
Outwardly a quiet thing,
Inwardly a melt down of your heavens and your earth,
As the Holy Thief robs you of all your treasure
Leaving you with only
His Presence.
 


  

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