Thy Kingdom Come II (Part 1 of 2)

Jeruslaem

This week the thought occurred of how the Jews of old had steadfastly looked and looked for any signs of the Lord’s kingdom on earth to be established. So much so that they ignored other more important Scriptures. Yet, today, we as His remnant people, the SDA church aren’t looking for it. And we are the ones who the prophecies are directed to! Amazing how both the Jews of old and us today, for the most part, are guilty of  not searching the Scriptures to know them well.

In our first installment of God’s kingdom of glory, we would like  to once again show the beauty of the foretold upcoming kingdom, a kingdom that first starts out on this earth before the millennial reign in heaven.  Many within our SDA church are unaware that this pre-millennial stage will exist but as we go into the various Scriptures, it becomes very clear how God WILL establish His kingdom in front of the heathen. The Lord’s Elijah message has now uncovered these beautiful promises for us.

Let us now  search and behold the marvelous things to come in God’s unconditional word.

Last week we pointed out who is God’s “Israel” of today. These are those who are to be the beneficiaries of the promises as Ellen White explains, ““That which God purposed to do for the world through Israel, the chosen nation, He will finally accomplish through His church on earth today. He has “let out His vineyard unto other husbandmen,” even to His covenant-keeping people, who faithfully “render Him the fruits in their seasons.” Never has the Lord been without true representatives on this earth who have made His interests their own. These witnesses for God are numbered among the spiritual Israel, and to them will be fulfilled all the covenant promises made by Jehovah to His ancient people.”(Prophets and Kings, p.713-714)

The Jews held the following promise close to heart as one of their basics on the kingdom of God on earth.

“For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.

Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.” (Isaiah 9:6-7)

As Seventh Day Adventists, we are well aware of the fact that when Jesus comes again, He will indeed take His saints home to heaven. And be with Him a thousand years, we shall afterward descend in the Holy City to live here in a newly created earth. That is a marvelous thing and that will be a wonderful time. We look forward to that time. Oh yes we surely do, But what of the Kingdom that was promised to Israel and to Judah. What of that Kingdom?

“When they therefore had come together, they asked Him, saying, Lord will Thou at this time restore again The Kingdom to Israel.”

“And He said unto them, It is not for you to know the time, or the times of the seasons which the Father hath put in His own power.”(Acts 1:6-7) In other words, He did not tell them that the Kingdom was not to be established. He simply said, It is not for you to know when. Of course we know it was not to be in their day. But He did not tell them that. Perhaps it would have discouraged them. Kept them from preaching the Gospel with all of their might. But the Lord in His Wisdom kept that from them. But the Bible does tell us when The Kingdom Of God’s Glory is going to be established.

Before we continue, it’s important to note that this “establishment” of the kingdom, per the Scriptures, will not be in heaven, as we SDA are commonly taught. It’s right here on earth, and Lord’s great  Name will finally be exalted by true representatives, those who “walk the walk” and not only “talk the talk”.

Let’s look at some specific promises found in Jeremiah.

“For, lo, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will bring again the captivity of my people Israel and Judah, saith the LORD: and I will cause them to return to the land that I gave to their fathers, and they shall possess it”(Jer. 30:3)

What is important to know in this promise is that in Jeremiah’s day, only the 2 tribes of Judah returned. This promise calls for ALL 12 tribes to return. The 10 tribes of Israel were dispersed among the nations and have never returned to this day. So this remains yet to be fulfilled, lest God has made an empty promise.

Also it’s important to point out that this is unconditional. The words “I will” and “they shall” are, as any knowledgeable english student knows, without conditions. To solidify that this promise is yet future we read,

“The fierce anger of the LORD shall not return, until he have done it, and until he have performed the intents of his heart: in the latter days ye shall consider it. (Jer.30:24)

We are living in the latter days, and as such we now — consider it. We now know that this promise will be fulfilled as we are revealed His upcoming pre-millennial kingdom on earth, His words will not return void–praise the Lord!

Thus we see very clearly that this prophecy begins with the Seventh Day Adventist Church, the Church of the last days. And we just read from inspiration, that all the covenant promises that were made to ancient Israel are to be fulfilled with us today. That is what the Bible says. As strange and new as it may sound, this is what the Bible says. Israel and Judah are to one day go back to the land that He gave to the fathers.

Now why would God want His people back there? Well to fulfill His promise. The promise that He made to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and Israel. He vowed to them that He would have a kingdom. Now you know why the disciples asked Jesus will you at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?

They could not just shove those prophecies aside. They understood that it must be fulfilled. Because God promised it. And Jesus told them it was not for them to know the times. But in the latter days, Jeremiah proclaims it to be. God does not make a mistake. He is always right.

In the book of isaiah, chapter 11, we find something that should make every doubter sit up straight. Carefully observe the promises given and then we’ll discuss what makes these inspired words one of the clearest of all Scripture as to the pre-millennial kingdom.

Isaiah 11:

1: “And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:

2: And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD;

3: And shall make him of quick understanding in the fear of the LORD: and he shall not judge after the sight of his eyes, neither reprove after the hearing of his ears:

4: But with righteousness shall he judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and he shall smite the earth with the rod of his mouth, and with the breath of his lips shall he slay the wicked.

5: And r righteousness shall be the girdle of his loins, and faithfulness the girdle of his reins.

6: The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them.

7: And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox.

8: And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice’ den.

9: They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain: for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.

10: And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious.

11: And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea.

12: And he shall set up an ensign for the nations, and shall assemble the outcasts of Israel, and gather together the dispersed of Judah from the four corners of the earth.

Now you are probably thinking that this is referring to the new earth. Well yes we do understand that in the New Earth everything will be peaceful. Everything will be marvelous. Pretty much as described here will be similar, But this prophecy brothers and sisters is not speaking about the New Earth.

Isa 65:9-20 Speaks about the New Earth. It tells how the wolf shall dwell with the lamb. Very similar to that of chapter 11. But here are three main reasons why this cannot be speaking about the New Earth. Isaiah 11:1 must be speaking about a time before Jesus comes.

THE FIRST REASON is simply this…It mentions in vs 10 that when this Kingdom is established when the wolf is lying down with the lamb, when the leopard is lying down with the kid, it says, vs 10, in that day there shall be a root of Jesse which shall stand FOR AN ENSIGN, (means a standard or a flag) for the people. And to it, (to the kingdom, to this ensign) shall the Gentiles seek.

Brothers and Sisters, THERE WILL BE NO GENTILES OR STRANGERS OR UNBELIEVERS IN HEAVEN OR IN THE NEW EARTH. So here Isaiah cannot be speaking about the New Earth or heaven. This prophecy is talking about a time when unbelievers, Gentiles, strangers, will be flocking to the kingdom. They will be coming to join God’s people. But this again cannot happen in heaven or the New Earth. Probation will already be closed by then.

Now with that in mind you can look at the next vs. That is vs 11.

11: And it shall come to pass in that day, that the Lord shall set his hand again the second time to recover the remnant of his people, which shall be left, from Assyria, and from Egypt, and from Pathros, and from Cush, and from Elam, and from Shinar, and from Hamath, and from the islands of the sea.

Here the Lord says He is going to reach out and gather His people. Just like He did anciently, except he will not gather from Egypt alone this time, but from all the islands of the sea. And vs 12 says that He will gather them from the four corners of the earth. You can see Brothers and Sisters that Isa 11:11 must apply to a time when you can have Gentiles seeking the Kingdom. Wanting to know more about God and His people. And He is going to gather His people from all over the world. That has to be pre-millennial. Don’t you think? Not after, not during. But before, prior to.

Now with this in mind we can surely see that it is talking about now, our time, in the days of these kings. The latter days. But you may be saying again this is conditional. Brothers and Sisters, let’s focus on the fact that there are no conditions attached here. What God says He will do and unless He says otherwise, we are to accept what He says. Whatever is uttered from His mouth He will not change. No buts, no maybe’s. It is very plain. It is a prophecy that will be fulfilled. The Bible says exactly what God is going to do in the days of these kings.

Next week we’ll look at more reasons that Isaiah’s prophetic words apply to the upcoming earthly kingdom before the Lord’s return in the clouds. One thing we should be clear is that this kingdom will be what is termed Theocracy. That means a church kingdom that will be based out of Israel, the land He promises His remnant people in these Scriptures. The kingdom will not be considered a world governing kingdom because we know that the mark of the beast system will be set up as well during this time.

The two kingdoms will be directly opposed and as such people will have a clear-cut idea which side to choose and join up with. The main proponent is either worship Him corporately on the so-called “Lord’s day” which is promoted as Sunday, or the Biblical Sabbath which starts at sunset Friday evening to sun-set Saturday evening.  The Lord is going to pull out “all stops” in one last witness to mankind. Sort of like “Here I AM, are you going to join Me?” This will be the time as prophesied by our prophetess.

“The light that was shed upon the waiting ones penetrated everywhere, and those in the churches who had any light, who had not heard and rejected the three messages, obeyed the call and left the fallen churches. Many had come to years of accountability since these messages had been given, and the light shone upon them, and they were privileged to choose life or death. Some chose life and took their stand with those who were looking for their Lord and keeping all His commandments.

The third message was to do its work; all were to be tested upon it, and the precious ones were to be called out from the religious bodies. A compelling power moved the honest, while the manifestation of the power of God brought a fear and restraint upon their unbelieving relatives and friends so that they dared not, neither had they the power to, hinder those who felt the work of the Spirit of God upon them.

The last call was carried even to the poor slaves, and the pious among them poured forth their songs of rapturous joy at the prospect of their happy deliverance. Their masters could not check them; fear and astonishment kept them silent. Mighty miracles were wrought, the sick were healed, and signs and wonders followed the believers.

God was in the work, and every saint, fearless of consequences, followed the convictions of his own conscience and united with those who were keeping all the commandments of God; and with power they sounded abroad the third message. I saw that this message will close with power and strength far exceeding the midnight cry.”

Servants of God, endowed with power from on high with their faces lighted up, and shining with holy consecration, went forth to proclaim the message from heaven. Souls that were scattered all through the religious bodies answered to the call, and the precious were hurried out of the doomed churches, as Lot was hurried out of Sodom before her destruction. God’s people were strengthened by the excellent glory which rested upon them in rich abundance and prepared them to endure the hour of temptation. I heard everywhere a multitude of voices saying, “Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.”(Early Writings, p.278-279)

One thing we should understand here is that during this time of glorious miracles  and calling out time, the people of God must come “out” and go into a righteous place where God wants them. Where will that be? it will be His holy land–Israel.

 Therefore, behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that they shall no more say, The LORD liveth, which brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt; But, The LORD liveth, which brought up and which led the seed of the house of Israel out of the north country, and from all countries whither I had driven them; and they shall dwell in their own land.(Jer. 23:7-8)

My brothers and sister the above promises have never happened to this very day. We know that God’s word CANNOT return void. You and I may “shoot at the wind” in our speaking, but God’s word is life.

Next week in part 2, we’ll look at further reasons that Isaiah’s prophetic words apply to the upcoming earthly kingdom before the Lord’s return in the clouds. Also we’ll take a look at Ezekiel’s prophecies.

(We’d like to thank our friends at SDA prophetic ministries for some of the quotes and comments  used in this post.)

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