A note from the author:
What does the kingdom of God tell us about the new heaven and new earth? I want to look at that topic next.
For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile. Let him turn from evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and pursue it.
For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers, but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil.
from 1 Peter chapter 3
we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, where in dwells righteousness.
2 Peter chapter 2
And I, John, saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.
And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.
And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.
And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said to me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.
And he said to me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give to him that is thirsty of the fountain of the water of life freely.
He that overcomes shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.
But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.
from Revelation chapter 21
A note from the author:
We look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells. It means we look for the removal of sin from the world.
John the Baptist says about Jesus, behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!
The cross is the foundation, the beginning, of the new heaven and new earth. We are the righteous ones. We are righteous by the blood of Jesus.
The old heaven (where satan stood before God as our accuser) and the old earth (where sin ruled) were both swept away by Jesus at the cross.
God raised Jesus out of the dead to be firstborn of his new creation. And God raises us up with Jesus. All who are baptized into Christ are a new creation. We are changed in baptism from old to new.
The new heaven and new earth are here now. The darkness is vanishing in the light of Jesus. Jesus and the cross are impacting every person. Sinners walking in darkness are transforming into saints walking in light. We are in the midst of the metamorphosis.
Those who refuse to repent are being destroyed from the earth and are returning to dust. The only ones who remain to the end in the kingdom of God are the righteous.
The Pharisees appeared very righteous before man, but God said they were hypocrites and whitewashed tombs. They thought they were in good standing with God, but were in fact the opposite. God was about to take the kingdom of God away from them and give it to others, to those who would produce the fruit of righteousness. The Pharisees were full of darkness, yet thought they were in the light.
I want to talk about light and darkness next, how we can know our own true condition and not deceive ourselves.
As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him should not die, but have eternal life.
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him should not die, but have everlasting life.
For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
He that believes on him is not condemned: but he that believes not is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For every one that does evil hates the light, neither comes to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.
But he that does truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.
from John chapter 3
Then spoke Jesus again to them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that follows me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.
from John chapter 8
This then is the message which we have heard of him and declare to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.
from 1 John 1
Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.
from 1 John chapter 3
We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren. He that loves not his brother abides in death.
from 1 John chapter 3
By this we perceive the love of God, because he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. But whoever has this world's goods, and sees his brother have need, and shuts up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwells the love of God in him? My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth. And by this we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him.
from 1 John chapter 3
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and every one that loves is born out of God, and knows God. He that loves not knows not God; for God is love.
from 1 John chapter 4
He that hates his brother is in darkness, and walks in darkness, and knows not where he goes, because that darkness has blinded his eyes.
from 1 John chapter 2
He that loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no occasion of stumbling in him.
from 1 John chapter 2
Seeing you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit to unfeigned love of the brethren, see that you love one another with a pure heart fervently, being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which lives and abides for ever.
For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withers, and the flower of the grass falls away, but the word of the Lord endures for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.
Therefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speaking, as newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that you may grow by it, if so you have tasted that the Lord is gracious. To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious, you also, as living stones, are built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.
from 1 Peter chapter 2
What does it profit, my brethren, though a man say he has faith, if he has not works? can faith save him? If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, and one of you say to them, depart in peace, be warmed and filled; and you do not give them those things which are needful to the body, what does it profit? Even so faith, if it has not works, is dead, being alone.
Yes, a man may say, you have faith and I have works: show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.
You believe that there is one God; you do well: the devils also believe and tremble. But will you know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead?
Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? See you how faith wrought with his works, and by works faith was made perfect? And the scripture was fulfilled which says, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed to him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.
You see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only. For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.
from James chapter 2
When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory: and before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats: And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.
Then shall the King say to them on his right hand, Come, you blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: For I was hungry, and you gave me meat. I was thirsty, and you gave me drink. I was a stranger, and you took me in. Naked, and you clothed me. I was sick, and you visited me. I was in prison, and you came to me.
Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when did we see you hungry, and feed you? or thirsty, and gave you drink? When did we see you a stranger, and took you in? or naked, and clothed you? Or when did we see you sick, or in prison, and come to you?
And the King shall answer and say to them, Truly I say to you, Inasmuch as you have done it to one of the least of these my brethren, you have done it to me.
Then shall he say also to them on the left hand, Depart from me, you cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry, and you gave me no meat. I was thirsty, and you gave me no drink. I was a stranger, and you took me not in. Naked, and you clothed me not. Sick, and in prison, and you visited me not.
Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when did we see you hungry, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister to you? Then shall he answer them, saying, Truly I say to you, Inasmuch as you did it not to one of the least of these, you did it not to me.
And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.
from Matthew chapter 25
A note from the author:
People chose to walk in light and do good, or chose to love evil and walk in darkness. It is possible to know a lot about Jesus and still be wicked. The demons know who Jesus is but they do not act like Jesus.
Jesus is watching what we do to others, for by our works we will show our nature, and he is inviting the righteous to enter into the kingdom of God.
This entrance into the kingdom of God is happening now on earth. People are now receiving from Jesus either everlasting punishment or eternal life according to their works. There is now a righteous judge ruling the earth.
pray: Our Father which art in heaven, holy be your name.
Thy kingdom come, thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil,
for yours is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
from Matthew chapter 6
A note from the author:
Do you see the beauty of this prayer?
We ask for Godís kingdom. We ask for Godís will to be done on earth. We ask to be delivered from evil.
What we ask, we receive.
Jesus now rules heaven and earth. Jesus always does the will of the Father. We now have the kingdom of God on earth. We have received what we asked.
Thomas refused to believe Jesus was alive until he saw Jesus alive for himself.
In like manner, many of us insist on seeing the kingdom before we will believe it is here, so we die and go to heaven and then see what we had all along on earth.
We are waiting for the kingdom of God. We are waiting for what we already have. We asked and God gave. That is the beauty of this prayer. The kingdom of God is now ours.
And you he has quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; wherein in time past you walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now works in the children of disobedience: Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.
But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, even when we were dead in sins, has quickened us together with Christ, (by grace you are saved;) and has raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus: that in the ages to come he might show the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.
For by grace you are saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast.
For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to good works, which God has before ordained that we should walk in them.
from Ephesians chapter 2
You are the temple of the living God; as God has said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
Therefore come out from among them, and be you separate, says the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. And will be a Father to you, and you shall be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.
Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
from 2 Corinthians chapter 7
Whoever is born of God overcomes the world: and this is the victory that overcomes the world, even our faith.
from 1 John chapter 5
He that has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.
To him that overcomes will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.
He that overcomes shall not be hurt by the second death.
To him that overcomes will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knows except who receives it.
He that overcomes, and keeps my works to the end, to him will I give power over the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to pieces: even as I received of my Father. And I will give him the morning star.
He that overcomes, the same shall be clothed in white raiment; and I will not blot out his name out of the book of life, but I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.
He that overcomes will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall no more go out, and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.
To him that overcomes will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.
He that overcomes shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.
from Revelation chapters 2, 3, and 21
Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ, to them that have obtained like precious faith with us through the righteousness of God and our Savior Jesus Christ:
Grace and peace be multiplied to you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord,
According as his divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that has called us to glory and virtue;
Whereby are given to us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these you might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.
For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you, that you shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
But he that lacks these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and has forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.
Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if you do these things, you shall never fall. For so an entrance shall be ministered to you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
from 2 Peter chapter 1
And when many people were gathered together, and were come to him out of every city, Jesus spoke by a parable:
A sower went out to sow his seed: and as he sowed, some fell by the way side; and it was trodden down, and the fowls of the air devoured it.
And some fell upon a rock; and as soon as it was sprung up, it withered away, because it lacked moisture.
And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprang up with it, and choked it.
And other fell on good ground, and sprang up, and bore fruit a hundred-fold. And when he had said these things, he cried, He that has ears to hear, let him hear.
And his disciples asked him, saying, What might this parable be?
And he said, To you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God, but to others in parables; that seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand.
Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.
Those by the way side are they that hear; then comes the devil, and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.
They on the rock are they, which, when they hear, receive the word with joy; and these have no root, which for a while believe, and in time of temptation fall away.
And that which fell among thorns are they, which, when they have heard, go forth, and are choked with cares and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to perfection.
But that on the good ground are they, which in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience.
from Luke chapter 8
Enter you in at the narrow gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leads to destruction, and there are many which go in there; because narrow is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leads to life, and there are few that find it.
Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
You shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree brings forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree brings forth evil fruit.
A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that brings not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you shall know them.
Not every one that says to me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that does the will of my Father which is in heaven.
Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out demons? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then I will profess to them, I never knew you: depart from me, you that work iniquity.
Therefore whoever hears these sayings of mine, and does them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
And everyone that hears these sayings of mine, and does them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.
from Matthew chapter 7
For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread: And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.
After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do you, as oft as you drink it, in remembrance of me.
For as often as you eat this bread, and drink this cup, you do show the Lord's death till he come.
Therefore whoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.
For he that eats and drinks unworthily, eats and drinks damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.
For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged. But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.
from 1 Corinthians chapter 11
Examine yourselves, whether you be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know you not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except you be reprobates?
Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you.
The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen.
excerpts from 2 Corinthians chapter 13
For the wrath of God is [also] revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men.
For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not good; being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, without understanding, covenant breakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful. Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.
The judgment of God is according to truth against them which commit such things.
excerpts from Romans chapters 1 and 2
JESUS : THE TRUTH AND THE LIFE