John the Baptist (Matt. 3:2), the apostles (Matt. 10:7) and Jesus (Matt. 4:17), all predicted that “the kingdom of heaven was at hand.” Jesus told some of his disciples they would not die till they had seen the kingdom of God come. “Verily I say unto you, That there be some of them that stand here, which shall not taste of death, till they have seen the kingdom of God come with power” (Mark 9:1). The expression ‘at hand’ indicates a short time. It is supremely sad that most believe Jesus’ prediction failed. Moses said:
And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken? When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him (Deut. 18:21-23).
If Jesus’ prediction failed, he is a false prophet. If he were not wrong, then the kingdom has already come. His prediction did not fail. The kingdom came in the lifetime of some of those who were standing there as he predicted. If the kingdom came, why do men not find it? Most Christians, like the Jews, are still looking for the kingdom. Strange, but most believe Jesus is the king of the kingdom, and they believe he has been a king for 2000 years, but with no citizens to be king over! What a pitiful king that would be! But Jesus does have citizens in his kingdom. Paul testified that the kingdom had already come. He said that God: “… hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son” (Col. 1:13). Paul and the Colossians had been translated into the kingdom of Christ. The apostle John testifies: “I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ” (Rev. 1:9). The kingdom must have come because Paul, John and the Colossians were in it. Where is the kingdom now and when did it come?