From “Feast of Tabernacles,” Chapter 14- Tabernacles – The Feast of His Appearing, continued
THE KINGDOM IS WITHIN
“And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say Lo here! or lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you. (Lk. 17:20,21.) A common explanation of this passage is this: the kingdom of God in the Church is invisible and “cometh not” with observation; but when the earthly Kingdom Age begins, then it will come with observation. As a matter of fact, there is nothing intimated here about two kingdoms; nor is it stated that the Kingdom of God cannot, or will not, be observed. Of course it will be observed and made manifest in the earth in due course; and “of His Kingdom there shall be no end.” But this passage is very clear as to how and in what manner the Kingdom shall be brought into being.
Not with a great burst of glory from Heaven, for it “cometh not” with observation. Rather shall it come “in secret,” in the hearts of God’s people.
“So is the kingdom of God, as if a man should cast seed into the ground; and should sleep, and rise night and day, and the seed should spring and grow up, he knoweth not how. For the earth bringeth forth fruit of herself: first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the ear.” (Mk. 4:26-28.) The full corn is wonderful to see; so is the ear: and even the blade is visible. But it all started under the ground through the mysterious, secret, invisible processes of nature, we know not how.
“Again the kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field. . .” Matt. 13:44.) The hidden kingdom! And Christ is the One who sold all that He had, and purchased us unto Himself. To do so He redeemed the whole world through His Blood. Soon will He remove the treasure from its hiding place, and manifest it!
LOOKING FOR THAT BLESSED HOPE
In Christ’s day the Jews were constantly looking forward to the day when their Messiah would suddenly manifest Himself in great power, deliver them from the Roman yoke, and set up the Kingdom. No wonder the Lord was so unpopular with them, for He told them plainly that the Kingdom would not come with “intense watching” (as the word ‘observation’ means). It is strange that one generation will not learn from the mistakes of their predecessors. For practically the whole body of evangelical churches today is looking forward with that same “intense watching” for a rapture or a kingdom that will deliver them from earth’s bondage, and establish them on thrones of power and authority in the earth. True, there shall come a day when the glory of the Lord shall cover the earth “as the waters cover the sea”; when every eye shall see Him; when the same Jesus that was taken up into Heaven, shall come in like manner as they saw Him go. But first there is the Appearing of Christ in the midst of His people by the Spirit, to establish the Kingdom of God within, and that is the hope of the Church.
Says Paul, “Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ.” (Titus 2:13) Literally, it reads: “Looking for that blessed hope, and the appearing of the glory of the great God . . .” When Solomon’s temple had been constructed, the priests and Levites set in their place, the singers and the musicians in theirs, and the vessels and furniture all properly arranged–then, “It came even to pass, as the trumpeters and singers were as one, to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the Lord . . . that then the house was filled with a cloud, even the house of the Lord; so that the priests could not stand to minister by reason of the cloud: for the glory of the Lord had filled the house of God.” (2 Chron. 5:13,14.) That is the Hope of the Church! GHW
We notice two concepts Bro. Warnock brings out here. Unity and order. Both are needed in the Church today. On the day of Pentecost, they were all in one place, in one accord. When the fulness of time had come, the Holy Spirit fell upon them in power. This is what we long for. This is the hope of the church.