WHAT IS “THE RELIGIOUS ERROR”? It is the same error that Rabbinical Judaism, Christianity, and even the Messianic Movement has made in regard to God’s Kingdom, and that is that they all view it as a RELIGION, rather than as an actual KINGDOM.
WHAT IS A “KINGDOM”?
A KINGDOM is a political, social, cultural, historical and, in this case, spiritual entity consisting of a KING ruling and reigning over a multitude of people who live and reside within a specified territory. Consequently, to define God’s KINGDOM as only a “spiritual KINGDOM” is to ignore or greatly restrict the meaning of the term KINGDOM since it does NOT include the other aspects of a KINGDOM.
But unlike what many people seem to think, God does not rule by means of a Democracy, a Republic, Socialism, Communism, or any other type of government. His kingdom is that of a MONARCHY; however, the problem, at least in the United States, is that many American Christians approach God and His Kingdom Manual [i.e., the Bible], as if He is running a Democracy. But the Bible is quite clear that God is a KING, and not a President or any other elected official.
Of course, there are some unique features to God’s KINGDOM. For one, and the most obvious unique feature, is that God, who is an eternal Spirit and the Creator of all things and, therefore, exists outside of all time, space, and matter, is the King. Therefore, those within His KINGDOM must be made spiritually alive, so that they may be able to interact with Him, in order to know His desires and how they are to serve Him. The other unique feature of His KINGDOM is His territory. It consists of all that He has created, both the physical universe and another alternate parallel universe that co-exists with the physical one, which we call “the spiritual realm.”
KINGDOM VS. RELIGION
Some may wonder what the differences are between a KINGDOM and RELIGION. A RELIGION, unlike a KINGDOM, is not a form of government centered around and led by a KING, but it’s a set of fundamental beliefs and practices that have been generally agreed upon by a group of people. I believe the differences are the following:
|In a KINGDOM, the KING is the focus.||In a RELIGION, the beliefs and practices are the focus.|
|In a KINGDOM, the KING is in control.||In a RELIGION, the people are in control.|
|The people who live in a KINGDOM are its citizens, who have rights, privileges and responsibilities granted to them by the KING.||The people who belong to a RELIGION are its members, who have rights and privileges voted upon by all the members.|
|In a KINGDOM, the KING makes the laws and commandments, which are to guide the lives of its citizens.||In a RELIGION, the people decide on what doctrines and practices they will stand for and represent, and which ones they won’t.|
|In a KINGDOM, the KING decides on who will be in His KINGDOM.||In a RELIGION, the people choose if they want to be in a RELIGION or NOT.|
|A KINGDOM reflects the character and nature of the KING.||A RELIGION reflects the character and nature of the people involved.|
As we can see, there are distinct differences between a KINGDOM and a RELIGION, they are NOT the same. And if we read through the Bible as a whole, we discover that what God wants us to be a part of His KINGDOM, not part of some RELIGION. But because of our sin nature and our need for control, we continue to want a RELIGION, rather than a KINGDOM.