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The Church - Lesson 3

The Church in 25 Lessons

Jon Gary Williams

Lesson 3 - The Church: A Kingdom

Several descriptive words used in a figurative way are applied to the church found in the New Testament. These words give emphasis to various features of the church and set forth different aspects of its nature. These figurative descriptions enable us to have a clearer, more complete concept of the Lord's church. Our third description of the church is found in the word kingdom.

I. The government of the church - a kingdom
A. A kingdom was to be given. (Lk. 12:31,32)
B. Parables of Christ set forth the church as a kingdom. (Mt. 13:24,31,33,44,45, 
C. The apostles were given authority in a kingdom. (Mt. 10:40; 16:18,19; Lk. 
9:1,2; 22:29,30)
D. In coming into the church people receive the kingdom. (Heb. 12:22,28)
II. The kingdom - existed in the first century
A. The kingdom was preached as "at hand." (Matt. 3:2; Mk. 1:14,15)
B. People living at the time of Christ were to witness the coming of the kingdom. (
Mk. 9:1) (cf. Lk. 9:27)
C. After Pentecost the kingdom was spoken of as in existence. (Acts 8:12; 20:25; 
19:8; 28:30,31; Col. 1:13; I Thess. 2:12)
D. The Lord's supper is in the kingdom. (Lk. 22:16-18)
III. The kingdom - spiritual in nature (Lk. 17:20,21; Jn. 18:36; Rom. 14:17)

IV. The king of this kingdom - Christ
A. Jesus taught that he was king. (Lk. 23:1-3; Jn. 18:37)
B. His throne and crown. (Lk. 1:32,33; I Tim. 6:15; Heb. 2:9)
C. His territory. (Mt. 28:18-20; Acts 1:8)
D. His law. (Jn. 1:17; 12:48) (cf. Gal. 6:2)
V. The kingdom - its citizenship

A. Entered by the new birth (obedience). (Jn. 3:5; I Pet. 1:23; Matt. 7:21)
B. Affections are to be centered on heavenly things. (Phil. 3:12-15; 20; Col. 3:1-4)
C. Love and unity is essential. (Eph. 5:1,2; Lk. 11:17) (cf. I Cor. 1:10; Phil. 2:2)
D. Sacrifice is required. (Rom. 12:1,2)
VI. The kingdom - its future
A. Its subjects will shine forth as the sun. (Mt. 13:43)
B. It will be taken from earth to be with God eternally. (I Cor. 15:24) (cf. I Jn. 3:2)