What the “Coming” of God’s Kingdom Means
DO YOU ever say the Lord’s Prayer? If so, then, like many millions of other persons, you repeat the words, “Thy kingdom come,” or, perhaps in modern English, you say, “Let your kingdom come.”—Matt. 6:9-13.
But stop and think. Do you fully realize what you are praying for when you say these words? And just as important, Do you really want that kingdom to come?
The Bible says that the coming rule of God’s kingdom or government will bring drastic changes, nothing short of a glorious and peaceful paradise here on earth. This, of course, is the ultimate result. But first consider how such a condition will be brought about.
POLITICAL RULE BY MEN REPLACED
Did you know, for example, that, according to the Bible, God’s kingdom will replace the now-existing governments of men? God’s kingdom will be no world federation, nor will it be a continuation of the present United Nations concept; it will not be a glorified polylingual debating society whose members, with or without veto power, champion various political ideologies.
The Scriptures abound with prophetic descriptions of just what the coming of God’s righteous kingdom will mean. Daniel’s prophecy (Da 2:44) says: “The God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be brought to ruin. . . . It will crush and put an end to all these kingdoms, and it itself will stand to times indefinite.”
Do you fully comprehend what that will mean? The prophecy of Daniel likens God’s kingdom to a stone that grinds the entire complex of human governments to powder, after which the Kingdom grows until it fills the whole earth.—Dan. 2:34-45.
Keep in mind that our wanting it or not wanting it will not in the least affect the certainty of its coming; this is the determined purpose of Almighty God. However, depending on our attitude, its coming will be for good or for bad to us individually. We must make our own choice. If we sincerely want it we will act in harmony with it, and that with benefit to ourselves.
Not everyone wants God’s kingdom to come. “The kings of earth,” the Bible psalmist says, “take their stand and high officials themselves have massed together as one against Jehovah and against his anointed one.” (Ps. 2:2) Obviously, those whose positions of power will be eliminated by the coming of God’s kingdom are not eager for its coming, and they frequently try to silence those who urge others to put faith in it.
Many persons whose prosperity is geared to the present selfish system of competition are not anxious to see it all end. Great stars of stage and screen, and athletic and sports heroes who relish the huzzah and praise of the populace will not rejoice to see the end of the system that puts them on glamorous tinsel-bedecked thrones of fame. Superpatriots and radical racists who worship nationalism and pride themselves over racial origins do not want to lose their cherished distinctions, yet under God’s kingdom there will be “neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, foreigner, Scythian, slave, freeman.”—Col. 3:11.
Despite such self-centered attitudes, the need for a great change, a global change, becomes daily more evident. God’s solution to the grave problems facing mankind is to replace the wicked old system with the righteous new one of His design. The whole social and economic system of the present must be terminated with the grinding destruction of human rule by God’s kingdom as promised. “Look! I am making all things new,” says the Sovereign Ruler who authorizes this new government.—Rev. 21:5.
If you truly love your Creator, your neighbor, your family, yes, your own life, you will be anxious for that change to come. You will not be disappointed either, for its coming will mean many more essential, yes, delightful benefits.
FINALLY—THE END OF ALL WAR
Under the new administration of God’s kingdom, “nation will not lift up sword against nation, neither will they learn war any more.” (Isa. 2:4; Mic. 4:3) What a blessing this will be! No more bombing of cities, no more killing of innocent men, women and children. Earth wide, people “will indeed find their exquisite delight in the abundance of peace.”—Ps. 37:11.
Most persons will agree that peace is very much to be desired, and they say that they earnestly want it. They are disappointed with international negotiations for peace that go on for years without tangible results. They realize that stockpiling of death-dealing weapons is not a reasonable way to promote an atmosphere conducive to genuine security. They cannot agree with those who protest the war policies of their governments by themselves engaging in acts of violence. They are also well aware that the United Nations has not put mankind on the way to peace. But are they willing to listen to what God’s Word says about peace? Are you?
God’s purpose to bring peace is not dependent on negotiations with any other government, nor is it hindered by their stockpiles of weapons. Jehovah is the Almighty, and all the forces of the universe are at his disposal. It is by means of his kingdom that “he is making wars to cease to the extremity of the earth.” (Ps. 46:9) This he will do by removing all peace disturbers.
As we have seen, this means the destruction of selfish political governments, but that is not all. The Bible also shows that those who personally indulge in strife, hatred and fits of anger, as well as those who disrupt relations with their fellowman by practicing fornication and adultery, “will not inherit God’s kingdom.” (Gal. 5:19-21) So, if we personally want to enjoy the peace that God’s kingdom will bring, we need to take steps now to root such tendencies out of our own lives. That is something that we can do by a conscientious study of the Bible and earnest application of its principles.
NO MORE FALSE RELIGION
The coming of God’s kingdom also means the end of all false forms of worship. Do you know that this too is what you are praying for when you repeat the Lord’s Prayer?
Your Grand Creator tolerates no rivalry. As he states in the Ten Commandments: “You must not have any other gods against my face [or, “in defiance of me”] . . . because I Jehovah your God am a God exacting exclusive devotion.” If Jehovah insisted on such devotion when he ruled over Israel as Judge, Statute-giver and King, no less can be expected when his rule is extended over all the earth.—Ex. 20:3-5; Isa. 33:22.
This means that drastic changes will come with the take-over of earth’s affairs by the Kingdom, for, as in Paul’s day, so now “there are those who are called ‘gods,’ whether in heaven or on earth, just as there are many ‘gods’ and many ‘lords.’” (1 Cor. 8:5) Why, India alone is said to have 330,000,000 gods and goddesses, and these plus many others are worshiped by many persons among the more than two and a half billion of the world’s population who are no part of Christendom. Obviously, if there is to be one united world the divisive forces of all such polytheistic worship must be removed.
Jehovah will likewise soon put an end to the hundreds of different so-called Christian denominations that make up Christendom’s sectarianism. There can be only one way of worshiping the one true God, the way he alone approves. The apostle writes, there is “one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all persons.”—Eph. 4:5, 6; 1 Cor. 1:10-13.
So when you pray for God’s kingdom to come, it could mean that you are praying for the end of your own church. Did you know that? If you belong to one of the more than 230 denominations active in the United States, the mathematical likelihood that your church will survive into God’s new order, is only about four tenths of one percent. But if we take into consideration the great variety of additional religious groups found in all parts of the world, then the mathematical likelihood that your religion is the right one is reduced to one tenth of one percent or even less.
Why gamble on so important a matter when it means your very life? Why not make sure that your religion is the one that survives? It will survive only if it agrees with God’s Word the Bible. Write us today and we will put you in touch with Bible teachers in your community who truly believe in God’s kingdom and who will gladly aid you in searching the Scriptures for the truth that leads to eternal life.—John 8:32.
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Most people would be glad to see war gone, with ‘swords beaten into plowshares,’ but do they also welcome the prospect of the end of divisive nationalism and false religion?