From that time Jesus began to preach, saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” Matthew 4:17
But this I confess to you, that according to the Way, which they call a sect, I worship the God of our fathers, believing everything laid down by the Law and written in the Prophets, having a hope in God, which these men themselves accept, that there will be a resurrection of both the just and the unjust. Acts 24:14-15
What does it mean, that this Kingdom is at hand, and what is the “way” there? The original Aramaic of “at hand” (ἐγγίζω eggizō) means to make near, i.e. (reflexively) approach: — approach, be at hand, come (draw) near, be (come, draw) nigh.
What does it mean that it is a “Kingdom”, and where is this Kingdom? As I sit here, I can reach out and touch my laptop. In Christianity, the revelation of God’s Christ brought the Kingdom “at hand”. If it is so close, then, how can I find my way there? It is the case that the Kingdom of God touches us. How, where, what, and why is what we need to know. The first recorded words of Christ involve this thing, this “Kingdom” that was “at hand”. Did you know that the earliest Christians referred to themselves as “The Way”? Surely it’s an important thing to talk about! What is the way to this Kingdom?
It’s not enough to know the terrain. There it is. You must certainly learn about it. However, we have somewhere that we need to be. We have work to do, you and I. In our walk of faith, we are truly pathfinders but we are not without a guide in the Holy Spirit and we are not without a manual for navigation: the Holy Bible.
Let’s equip you for your journey. We’re not going to think like Columbus or Lewis & Clark. We are going to think like the men who built the Nina, the Pinta and the Santa Maria. We are going to approach this like Merriweather Lewis, the expedition’s primary logistics planner, who made sure that William Clark had scouts and an adequate line of supply. We’ve learned this, time and again, as we study our nation’s battles. [EXTRA CREDIT READ Into the Unknown: The Logistics Preparation of the Lewis and Clark Expedition.pdf]
During the next weeks we will be addressing what the Way is for each of our lives. As Kingdom Men we share the same gateway to salvation and the same final destination. However, at times we need to band together for shared purposes which often involve battle. We need to understand this new terrain, and master the tools of navigation. We have to be ready to make our own maps using the master set of tools given to us as a gift from God.
We’ll have to outfit ourselves with the correct supplies. Believe it, our outfitter has the best supplies ever created and they are all free. Also, we’ll have to clique up with our brothers so that we can watch over each other from time to time. There are passes through the mountains; we don’t have to go over them. The passes are narrow; we’ll have to work together to traverse.
In the coming weeks, we want to unpack “the Way” to this Kingdom which is “at hand”. Whether we like it or not and whether we know it or not – the way is a journey we are all on: You, your family, everyone you love and anyone you don’t love….yet.
TODAYS TRAINING: Read this short essay entitled “Bible verses about Kingdom of God is at Hand” by John W. Ritenbaugh, available at Bibletools.org — https://www.bibletools.org/index.cfm/fuseaction/Topical.show/RTD/cgg/ID/14158/Kingdom-God-is-at-Hand.htm
Here is another article that discusses the history of “at hand” – https://lifehopeandtruth.com/prophecy/kingdom-of-god/messiahs-message-the-kingdom-of-god-is-at-hand/