Is The Kingdom of Jesus To End?
Problem: Skeptics believe they have found a contradiction. The Bible teaches that the kingdom of Jesus would not come to an end (Daniel 7:14; Luke 1:33), whereas in other passages it is stated that the kingdom will come to an end (1 Corinthians 15:24-28).
Solution: There is a great misunderstanding on the part of the skeptics with regards to these verses. People need to understand that there are different meanings to the word "kingdom". It is sometimes referring to God's people (the church of Christ - Matthew 16:18). Sometimes it is referring to the reign or right of rule. This is what will be considered in this question. People need to understand that the kingdom of God existed prior to the creation of heavens, earth and mankind (Genesis 1:1; Psalm 95:3). It has existed in different phases. And it will continue into eternity.
1. God gave the creational mandate to Adam and Eve. Part of their commission was to "have dominion over...all the earth" (Genesis 1:26,27). They were to be vice-regents of the great King who reigned over creation. Unfortunately, Adam and Eve failed in their commission and were exiled out of the garden of Eden (Genesis 3:24).
2. God then gave the mandate to the nation of Israel in that they were to participate in what Adam and Eve were supposed to do (Exodus 19:5,6). They were to be made a "kingdom of priests." The Israelites, however, failed in their commission and were exiled into Babylon (2 Kings 25).
3. God prophesied that His reign (kingdom) would be given over to the Messiah (Daniel 2:44; Isaiah 9:6,7). John the Immerser and Jesus had prophesied that the reign of God was near and that it would be transferred over to Jesus (Matthew 4:17). John was preparing the hearts of Israel to reconcile to God in that many of them would receive a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins (Mark 1:4; Luke 7:29,30) [based on the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross - Hebrews 9:15-17] that would place them in the preparatory phase of the kingdom (John 3:1-8; Matthew 11:12). The nation of Israel forfeited their role in allowing God's reign to rule in their lives. The reign, nonetheless, was given to Jesus (Matthew 21:43,44). Jesus began His reign over the kingdom when He sat down at the right hand of God (Matthew 28:18; Acts 2:29-36; Psalm 110:1,2; Hebrews 1:1,2).
4. Jesus will continue to reign until He has put all enemies under His feet, even physical death (1 Corinthians 15:24-28). The kingdom under the Messiah will come to an end in the sense that Jesus will then transfer the right of rule back to God the Father and subordinate Himself to the Father. This will become the consummated phase of God's kingdom in that it will be the dwelling place where God rules over the righteous without any end (2 Peter 1:11; Revelation 21:1,2).
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