The Kingdoms of
Grace and Glory
Give the promise which our Saviour made to the "little flock."
"Fear not, little flock; for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom." Luke 12:32.
NOTE: This text shows that while one may belong to the "little flock," the favored of God, the real kingdom is yet before him. While in God's service, however, he may, in one sense, be in the kingdom. But there are at least five essentials to the formation of a kingdom: (1) A king, as the reigning head; (2) A throne, as the chair of state from which the king may issue his decrees; (3) A definite territory over which the king has jurisdiction, without which there can be no real kingdom; (4) Subjects in that territory to rule over, to bive power to the king, and stability to his throne; (5) Laws by which the subjects may be governed. If one finds in the sacred word any of these parts of a kingdom in existence, he may be sure that the kingdom itself is recognized.
To what throne are we exhorted to come to find mercy?
"Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." Heb. 4:16.
NOTE: It would be useless to come before any throne for a favor, if that throne had no occupant. The throne of grace, therefore, supposes a king of grace. If there is a king, he must have subjects, and laws to govern those subjects. Then, while in this state, and receiving grace, or favor, from God, one must be in the kingdom of grace.
To what other kingdom do the Scriptures call our attention?
"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." Matt. 25:31.
NOTE: This kingdom is to be established at the second coming of Christ.
By what are men saved from sin?
"For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God." Eph. 2:8 (Rom. 6:23).
NOTE: It follows then, that ALL -- including Abraham, Moses, David, as well as Peter, Paul, and John -- must be saved by the grace, or favor, of God, as there is no other way to save those who have been sinners. These all, therefore, were in the kingdom of Goace, which must have been set up as early as there were lost men who needed grace.
In the parable of the wheat and tares, what does the good seed represent?
"The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one," Matt. 13:38.
Who sows the tares?
"The enemy that sowed them is the Devil." Matt. 13:39.
Satan first sowed the tares of sin in Eden, Hence the kingdom of God was in existence at that time. The earth was God's kingdom, and was designed to be His forever.
To whom did God entrust His kingdom?
"And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth." Gen. 1:26.
NOTE: Man fell, and the world became the abode of sin. It can no longer be man's kingdom until sin is blotted out of it. Whoever, after that, would become a subject of God's kingdom, must now separate from this kingdom that has been usurped by Satan, and yield obedience to God's laws. In thus doing, they enter into arrangement, made by God, by which they become His subjects, and renounce the service of Satan. They are then in God's kingdom, or the kingdom of grace, because they are the subjects of God's favor, or grace.
When Christ sent out His disciples, what did He tell them to preach?
"And He sent them to preach the kingdom of God, and to heal the sick." Luke 9:2.
In carrying out their commission, what did they preach?
"And they departed, and went through the towns, preaching the gospel, and healing everywhere." Luke 9:6.
NOTE: We are sure, then, that the grace of God, in which the gospel is founded, has been extended ever since man needed salvation from sin. By this arrangement man could be "called out" into a temporary kingdom, that should run parallel to the one lost in the geginning, until it could be redeemed and restore to its rightful owner.
After the loss of the first kingdom, what promise did God make to Israel, if they would obey Him?
"Now therefore, if ye will obey My voice indeed, and keep My covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto Me above all people: for all the earth is Mine. And ye shall be unto Me a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation." Ex. 19:5-6.
NOTE: Although the kingdom as a whole, was in the hands of Satan, the Lord would take the Israelites, if they would obey Him, and of them form a kingdom within the usurped kingdom, to continue until the usurper should be overthrown.
After the children of Israel were settled in Canaan, what did they request of Samuel the prophet?
"Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways: now make us a king to judge us like all the nations." 1 Sam. 8:5.
Upon taking the matter to God, what instruction did Samuel receive?
"And the Lord said unto Samuel, Hearken unto the voice of the people in all that they say unto thee: for they have not rejected thee, but they have rejected Me, that I should not reign over them." 1 Sam. 8:7.
NOTE: The people had heretofore been instructed and governed by God, through His prophets; but they wanted now to be like the kingdom out of which they had been called, and of which the nations around them formed a part.
Notwithstanding the perverseness of Israel, what did the lord promise to David their king?
"Thy seed will I establish forever, and build up thy throne to all generations." Ps. 89:4.
Through whom was the throne of David to be perpetuated?
"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, Counsellor, 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." Isa. 9:6-7.
Who is this seed of David, the heir to his throne?
"Thou shalt. .bring forth a son, and shalt call His name Jesus. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God shall give unto Him the throne of His father David." Luke 1:31, 32.
While the kingdom was still held by the Jewish kings, what prediction was made concerning the kingdom?
"And thou, profane, wicked prince of Israel, whose day is come, when iniquity shall have an end, Thus saith the Lord God; Remove the diadem, and take off the crown." Eze. 21:25, 26.
After the crown was taken from the Jewish king, and that kingdom had become tributary to the Babylonians, what more was predicted concerning it?
"I will overturn, overturn, overturn it; and it shall be no more, until He come whose right it is; and I will give it Him." Eze. 21:27.
NOTE: This threefold overturning was accomplished in the successive subversions of the kingdoms of the Babylonians, the Medes and Persians, and the Grecians. See reading on "Prophetic History of the World." The Jews were under the rule of each of these dynasties. The last overturning took place when Rome conquered the Grecians, 168 B.C.; but the famous league between the Romans and the Jews, made 161 B.C. brought the latter people more completely under the rule of that iron power. In 70 A.D., the Jews were dispersed to all parts of the world, and the throne of David, which their kingdom represented, was to be no more, till He should come to whom it belongs.
Christ did not take that throne when on earth. Did He assume it when. ascending to heaven, or did He occupy the Father's throne, with Him?
"To him that overcometh 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." Rev. 3:21.
What is He doing at the Father's right hand?
"The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou at My right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool." "The Lord hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou art a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek." Ps. 110:1, 4; Heb. 10:12, 13.
When His priestly work is finished, what will Christ do?
"Then cometh the end, when He shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father." 1 Cor. 15:24.
When He comes to earth, on whose throne will He sit?
"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." Matt. 25:31 (Rev. 11:15).
Then what will He say to the redeemed?
"Come, ye blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world." Matt. 25:34.
How will the saints appear after reaching that kingdom?
"Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father." Matt. 13:43.