Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
October 8, 1964

The Kingdom Of God

Jerry F. Basset

In Romans 14:16-18 there is an interesting and significant statement on the nature of the kingdom of God which also bears on the fact of its existence. Paul wrote, "Let not then your good be evil spoken of: For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. For he that in these things serveth Christ is acceptable to God, and approved of men." When considered in the general context of the Roman letter this statement shows clearly that the kingdom of God was already in existence in the First Century when the letter was written, and is not then of recent origin, much less of future origin as Premillennialists falsely teach.

Two conditions are basic to the existence of any given object. First and obviously, all set elements must be assembled to form the finished product. For example, the existence of a material building depends first on the existence of all the materials that compose it, and second on these materials being assembled to form the building. When these two conditions are met, the building exists. Paul says that the elements o f the kingdom of God are righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Ghost. If it can be shown that these elements existed and were assembled according to God's plan when the Roman letter was written in the First Century then it must be concluded that the kingdom of God was already in existence at that time.

The very idea of the Roman letter is the revelation of the righteousness of God in the gospel of Christ. 1:16-1'7. It shows that his righteousness is in Christ distinct from fleshly Israel and from the law of Moses that governed it. 3:19-26; 9:6-8. It says that "... Christ is the end (objective) of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth..." 10:4. Further, it declares that those who partake of this righteousness, that is, who are justified by faith in Christ, "...have peace with God ...and rejoice in hope of the glory of God." 5:12. Thus the elements of the kingdom of God were in existence when Paul wrote this letter.

But it must also be shown that these elements were assembled according to God's plan to form the finished product, and Paul's letter to the Romans clearly shows that such is the case. It says that righteousness is in Christ, and that peace and joy are through Christ (5:1-2, 11) he being the anointed one of God, the Son of his right hand in whom he is well pleased. And unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, 0 God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows." Hebrews 1:8-9.

The kingdom of God is then established, and exists in the relationship God provided in Christ Jesus more than nineteen centuries ago. And of eternal importance to each one of us is the fact that every man who serves Christ in righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost is a citizen in God's kingdom and acceptable to him,

— 320 Minner Avenue Antioch, California