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Typology of the Kingdom – Guest Article by David Boone

(MJS – At the 2017 Berean Bible Conference David Boone gave an excellent presentation on the typology of the Old Covenant Kingdom and how these promises were fulfilled “in Christ” and through the New Covenant Kingdom/Church.  I am grateful to him for making this presentation available in article form for you to enjoy here).

Typology of the Kingdom

by David Boone

TYPOLOGY

Typology pertains to types and shadows which are Old Testament people, places, things, or events that foreshadow spiritual realities found in the New Testament.

My aim is to walk through the Biblical narrative and take a broad sweeping look at the types and shadows from the Old Testament that point forward to components of the kingdom.

By “the kingdom” I mean that which Jesus referred to as the kingdom of heaven or the kingdom of God, the Kingdom to which we, as believers, belong.

The kingdom is the central teaching of Jesus in the New Testament.  In fact, the kingdom is the gospel.

Let’s look at some passages that make this case explicitly:

  • Matthew 4:23 Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people.
  • Matthew 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.
  • Acts 8:12 But when they believed Philip as he proclaimed the good news of the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women.

Again, the Kingdom is the gospel.  Notice that the Bible never says that John the Baptist, Jesus, or the apostles ever preached the good news that if one has enough faith he will have better job, bigger house, wealth, health, and prosperity.  The Scriptures declare that they preached the good news of the Kingdom.  The Kingdom is the gospel.

Notice also that we never read that they preached the good news that you don’t have to go to hell when you die; all you have to do is say this prayer and accept Jesus into your heart.  Paul and Barnabus didn’t show up at the synagogue and say, “Listen gang, hate to interrupt, but I’ve got great news.  It’s alter call time.  Anybody who wants to walk down the aisle can do so at this time.  If that’s uncomfortable, just raise your hand with your heads bowed.”  The good news that was preached was the arrival of the Kingdom of God.  The Kingdom is the gospel.

Good news: the long-anticipated kingdom of God has come upon us, the king has arrived and his name is Jesus!

The kingdom is the gospel or good news.

So let’s look at the typology of the kingdom.

Simply put, the Old Testament is the story of national Israel, the Old Creation while the New Testament is the story of the New Creation, spiritual Israel.  Let’s begin with the beginning.

NEW BEGINNING

The Bible from beginning to end is a story about Israel, God’s creation.  It begins with the book of Genesis, which means beginning.  Genesis begins with “In the beginning.”  It begins with Adam and lists his descendants but it moves rather quickly to the point, which is Abraham, Isaac and Jacob who is Israel, God’s creation.

Israel is the clay and God is the potter.  Israel is His handiwork, His workmanship.  National Israel is, in this sense, the Old creation.

The New Testament clues us in on the fact that God was in the process of creating a New Israel, the New Creation, in Christ.

John’s gospel opens up with the very same words as Genesis, “In the beginning.”

John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word and the word was with God and the word was God…”  It goes on in verse 14 to say “the word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.” Virtually everyone agrees that this refers to Jesus.

Now we clearly have here a new Genesis, a new beginning in which we see a new creation and that new creation is the New Israel in Christ.

2 Cor 5:17 if anyone is in Christ he is a new creation. The old has gone the new has come.

Eph 2:10 for we are God’s workmanship created in Christ Jesus

We, the spiritual Israel, are the new creation, the new Israel, God’s workmanship

Thus, National Israel was a type of the Spiritual Israel in Christ.  The New Testament opens with the beginning of this new creation, this new Israel, this spiritual Israel.

NEW FOUNDATION – THE TWELVE

Now the story of Genesis, the story of the beginning of God’s Old Creation, Israel, teaches that the community of Israel has its foundation upon the twelve.  Jacob (aka Israel) had twelve sons and from these twelve sons came the twelve tribes and the descendents who make up the Israel of old.  In this sense Israel was founded upon the twelve.  Time spent in the Old Testament will reveal a heavy emphasis on that number twelve and the corresponding twelve tribes; this is very significant.

In the New Testament, the story of God’s new creation, we see that the New Israel also has its foundation upon a twelve.

When Jesus began his ministry he spent an entire evening in prayer and then in the morning he selected from among his many disciples, twelve who would be apostles.  That wasn’t an arbitrary number.  The number twelve is quite significant and it should clue us in on the fact that God is in Christ creating a new Israel, His new creation and this twelve is the foundation upon which his new Israel is built.

In speaking of the heavenly Jerusalem, spiritual Jerusalem, New Jerusalem (the Kingdom), John writes in Rev 21:14 The wall of the city had twelve foundations, and on them were the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb

Just as national Israel was built upon a foundation of the twelve, so also, spiritual Israel, the new creation is built upon a foundation of the twelve.  The twelve tribes foreshadowed the twelve apostles as foundation of Israel.

NEW BIRTH

In the Israel of old, consider how the community grew and expanded.  New people were added to their number by birth!

Membership in Israel was primarily according to ethnicity, by flesh and blood relation, by national descent.  To grow a kingdom and expand it, one would simply have many children.

In the New Testament we find that people are born into the new Israel not by natural birth, but by spiritual birth through faith.  People become part of God’s family, Israel through faith not flesh, through believing – not through the womb.  John explains it this way:

John 1:10ff 10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him.  12 Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.

Those born OF GOD belong to the Kingdom OF GOD.  They are born from above just as the kingdom to which they belong is from above.

NEW SLAVERY

In the Old Testament, the Israel of old eventually became slaves in Egypt and were in need of redemption, rescue out of that slavery.

In the New Testament, we find that God’s creation, Israel is enslaved, but not to a literal earthly Egypt.  Rather they are enslaved to a spiritual Egypt and are thereby in need of redemption, rescue out of spiritual slavery.

We see this explained in Paul’s letter to the Galatians when he contrasts slavery and freedom.

Gal 4:21ff  21 Tell me, you who want to be under the law, are you not aware of what the law says? 22 For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by the slave woman and the other by the free woman. 23 His son by the slave woman was born in the ordinary way; but his son by the free woman was born as the result of a promise.

24 These things may be taken figuratively, for the women represent two covenants. One covenant is from Mount Sinai and bears children who are to be slaves:  This is Hagar. 25 Now Hagar stands for Mount Sinai in Arabia and corresponds to the present city of Jerusalem, because she is in slavery with her children. 26 But the Jerusalem that is above is free, and she is our mother.

Paul is comparing the people of his day.  There were those who were clinging to the Old Covenant which corresponds to the Old Creation and there were those who were coming into the New Covenant and participating in the New Creation.  He points out that those in his day in earthly Jerusalem clinging to the Old Covenant were in slavery.  In the first century, the city of Jerusalem had become a spiritual Egypt which had enslaved God’s people as they were in bondage to sin and death under the Old Covenant.

First century Jerusalem is clearly identified as a spiritual Egypt.

Rev 11:8 Their bodies will lie in the street of the great city, which is spiritually called Sodom and Egypt, where also their Lord was crucified.

Consider where the Lord was crucified.  It was just outside the city gates of Jerusalem which is here called Egypt.

Egypt’s enslavement of Israel in the Old Testament served as a type that foreshadowed the spiritual enslavement of God’s people that we find in the New Testament in the spiritual Egypt of Israel.

NEW MOSES

In the Old Testament God raised up Moses to lead the Israelites out of slavery.  Moses was a type of Christ as Christ was the one who God raised up to lead (what scholars call) “the 2nd Exodus.”

Moses and Jesus Parallels:

  1. Like Moses, Jesus was born during a time when Israel was under foreign domination
  2. As Moses’ life at birth was threatened by Pharaoh, Jesus was born during a time of a disturbed king, Herod, who wanted to protect his position of power and gave the order to kill all the innocent baby boys.
  3. Like Moses, Jesus was rejected by his brothers
  4. fasted 40 days and 40 nights
  5. sent forth 12 men
  6. performed miracles as a sign of his authority
  7. that authority was challenged
  8. his brothers were almost ready to stone him
  9. He was called God’s servant
  10. considered faithful before God
  11. was the mediator of a Covenant
  12. was God’s prophet to His people
  13. and ultimately delivered his people from bondage

So Moses was CLEARLY a type of Christ.  Christ is the fulfillment.

NEW EXODUS & PASSOVER LAMB

In the Old Testament the book of Exodus is dedicated to detailing the exodus out of slavery in Egypt.  This exodus was initiated with the shedding of the blood of the Passover Lamb.

In the New Testament we have a new Exodus out of the spiritual Egypt and it is also initiated with the shedding of the blood of the true Passover lamb, Jesus Christ, who like the original Passover lamb was:

  • a male without blemish or defect
  • none of whose bones were broken
  • and whose blood covered those who would be passed over instead of receiving God’s wrath.

Remember when Jesus was crucified?  His blood was shed on the cross during Passover.  This is no coincidence.   1 Cor 5:7b for Christ our Passover lamb has been sacrificed.

The Passover Lamb served as a type foreshadowing Jesus, the true Passover Lamb.

NEW COVENANT FOR LIFE IN NEW LAND (FREEDOM & REST)

Moses was also the mediator of the Old Covenant, which corresponded to the Old Creation.  As God was bringing his people out of Egypt and they were transitioning from slavery to freedom, God gave Israel a covenant through Moses, which was embodied in The Law written on stone tablets.  This Law contained the stipulations for Israel regarding life as God’s people in the Land.

Jesus, as the antitype, also, was in the process of leading Israel out of slavery mediated a New Covenant which corresponds to the New Creation and a new law to be written upon the heart.  One might consider The Sermon on the Mount as Jesus’ giving of the new law.  As Moses gave instruction through the Law for Israel’s life in the Land, so also Jesus gave a New Covenant, by which the people were to live in the Kingdom.

The Old Covenant law served as a type foreshadowing the things of the New Covenant.

Heb 10:1  The law is only a shadow of the good things that are coming—not the realities themselves.

Col 2:16-17  16 Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day. 17 These are a shadow of the things that were to come; the reality, however, is found in Christ.

So the Law and those elements of the Old Covenant were shadows of the New Covenant realities found in Christ.

NEW WILDERNESS WANDERING 40 YEARS TRANSITION

In the Old Testament, after God brought Israel out of Egypt they wandered in the wilderness for 40 years before they came into the Promised Land.  Thus we have a forty year period as they transitioned from slavery to freedom

In the Old Testament, during that 40 years in the wilderness, many wanted to return to Egypt saying to Moses, “Why did you bring us out here to die in the wilderness.”  They perished because they lacked faith.

In the New Testament, between 30 and 70 AD there is another 40 year transition period as the new creation, spiritual Israel, transitions from slavery to freedom.  Jesus proclaimed the good news around 30 AD and they were fully redeemed from that bondage in 70 AD with the abolition of the Old Covenant.  This is a 40 year period of transition between the Old and New covenants, an overlap in the ages.  What the New Testament writers called “the present age,” (the Old Covenant age) was coming to an end – their time of slavery had come to an end and they were looking forward to entering their promised Kingdom.  The good news was preached and they were making their way to freedom in the kingdom.  But until the Old Covenant was fully done away and the New Covenant fully ushered in, they were in transition between spiritual Egypt and the Spiritual Land of Israel, the Kingdom.

In the New Testament, during that 40 years of transition, many wanted to return to the Old Covenant because their wilderness was also a difficult one.  The author of Hebrews parallels their desire to that of Moses’ generation.  Consider what the author of Hebrews says to his contemporaries in the first century.

Heb 4:1-2 1Therefore, since the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us be careful that none of you be found to have fallen short of it. For we also have had the gospel preached to us, just as they did; but the message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith.

In the New Testament time, during the 40 years between 30 and 70 AD many were tempted to turn back to the Old, but Jesus and the apostles and writers of the New Testament encouraged them to stay strong till the end, don’t turn back.  Anyone who puts hand to the plow and looks back is not fit for service in the kingdom.

NEW WILDERNESS GENERATION

That Old Testament generation that wandered for 40 years served as a type of Jesus’ first century generation.  We have that explicitly stated in the New Testament.

In 1 Cor 10, Paul is pointing to the generation that wandered in the wilderness.

1 Cor 10:6 Now these things occurred as (types) of us…

1 Cor 10:11 These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us, on whom the culmination of the ages has come.

Thus, the 40 year wilderness wandering in the Old Testament foreshadowed the 40 year transition period between 30 and 70 ad.

NEW JOSHUA TO LEAD THEM INTO THE NEW LAND

Not only did Moses foreshadow Jesus, but so did Joshua.  Joshua is the one who actually led the Israelites into the Land.  Significantly enough Jesus and Joshua are actually the same name.

Joshua’s mother called him by the same name that Mary called Jesus.  Joshua is Yeshua in the Hebrew language.  When we translate the Old Testament from Hebrew to English, we end up with Joshua.  The New Testament is written in Greek.  Yeshua translated to Greek is Ἰησοῦς (pronounced Iesous).  When we translate the Greek to English, this becomes “Jesus.”

Yeshua à Joshua

Yeshua à Ἰησοῦς à Jesus

Joshua = Jesus

NEW INHERITANCE (LITERAL PROMISED LAND; SPIRITUAL KINGDOM)

The Old Testament calls the Promised Land Israel’s inheritance.  Joshua 11:23  So Joshua took the whole land, according to all that the LORD had spoken to Moses, and Joshua gave it for an inheritance to Israel according to their divisions by their tribes.

The New Testament calls the Kingdom Israel’s inheritance. Matthew 25:34  “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.

In Old Testament the Promised Land as the Inheritance of Old Covenant Israel served as a type of the Kingdom as the inheritance of the saints.

 NEW TEMPLE

Depending on the era, in the Old Testament there was a sanctuary of sorts, either a tabernacle or a temple in which God’s presence dwelt.  It was a physical, earthly structure.

In the New Testament there is a new sanctuary, a new temple in which God lives by his spirit, it is not physical or earthly, but spiritual.  Eph 2:19ff  19 Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21 In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.

The temple of Old served as at type of the body of Christ, the new temple.

Spiritual temple in a spiritual kingdom.

NEW PRIESTHOOD

In the Old Testament, Levites (those from the tribe of Levi) served as a priesthood offering literal animal sacrifices to atone for the sins of the people.

In the New Testament temple, the spiritual temple, there is a spiritual priesthood offering spiritual sacrifices.  These are not literal Levites, but those who have been made Levites by the spirit.  We find this foretold in the Old Testament.

Isaiah 66:19ff 19 “I will set a sign among them, and I will send some of those who survive to the nations—to Tarshish, to the Libyans and Lydians (famous as archers), to Tubal and Greece, and to the distant islands that have not heard of my fame or seen my glory. They will proclaim my glory among the nations.  20 And they will bring all your brothers, from all the nations, to my holy mountain in Jerusalem as an offering to the Lord—on horses, in chariots and wagons, and on mules and camels,” says the Lord. “They will bring them, as the Israelites bring their grain offerings, to the temple of the Lord in ceremonially clean vessels.21 And I will select some of them also to be priests and Levites,” says the Lord.

This would sound astonishing to an Israelite under the Old Covenant because you can’t simply make someone a priest who is not a Levite and you can’t simply make someone a Levite.  Levites are descendants of Levi…period.  In the New Israel, however, you can because flesh and blood, ethnicity, and pedigree have nothing to do with status.  In the Kingdom, God turns people from the nations not only into Israelites, but into Levites and priests.
Rev 5:10 You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.”

In the Old Testament, the literal priesthood as the literal blood descendants of Levi served as a type foreshadowing the spiritual priesthood found in the New Testament.

NEW CIRCUMCISION

In the Old Testament, circumcision the defining mark of Israel, a symbol of the covenant.  This extremely important rite takes on a new form in the New Covenant as Paul writes to the Galatians.

Gal 6:15 Neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything; what counts is the new creation

Paul points out that circumcision of the flesh is no longer what counts because that pertained to the OLD Creation.  The NEW creation is what counts and the new creation is not associated with circumcision of the flesh, but a radically different kind of circumcision, a spiritual circumcision not done with human hands.  Look what Paul says in

Rom 2:27ff 27 The one who is not circumcised physically and yet obeys the law will condemn you who, even though you have the written code and circumcision, are a lawbreaker.

28 A man is not a Jew if he is only one outwardly, nor is circumcision merely outward and physical. 29 No, a man is a Jew if he is one inwardly; and circumcision is circumcision of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the written code. Such a man’s praise is not from men, but from God.

In the Old Testament circumcision of the flesh done with human hands foreshadowed the spiritual circumcision of the heart in New Testament.

NEW SON OF DAVID/KING

In the Old Testament, once Israel established themselves in the Promised Land, they put a king over them.  Once they inherited the land, the goal was to have rest from their enemies and peace.  David and his mighty men shed much blood and put their physical, literal, earthly enemies under their feet.

After David, in the time of Solomon, Israel enjoyed great peace.  Solomon means peaceful.  It is a variant of Shalom which means peace.  Solomon, the son of David, as king foreshadowed Jesus, the prince of peace, the true shalom, the King of the Kingdom.

Solomon, the literal son of David is a type of Christ, the heavenly son of David.

NEW KINGDOM (COMMUNITY & TERRITORY)

Solomon’s Kingdom, was for Israel a time of unprecedented peace and prosperity.  2 Chronicles 9 indicates that he reigned in righteousness and justice and that he had great renown as the wisest of all men.  Israel enjoyed great economic and territorial expansion as well as freedom and rest from their enemies.

In this, Solomon’s Kingdom foreshadowed the Kingdom of Christ.  In Christ, under his reign, Israel is restored to her former glory under a king reigning in wisdom, justice and righteousness, territorial expansion, in peace and prosperity.  This gloriously restored Israel is spiritual Israel, the New Creation.  The Kingdom is Israel restored to her former glory under the reign of the son of David.

The earthly kingdom of Solomon in the Land foreshadowed the heavenly Kingdom of Christ.

NEW ZION

In the Old Testament Solomon reigned in Jerusalem, the city of his father David, the fortress of Zion.

In the New Testament we find a Heavenly Jerusalem a Heavenly Mt Zion.

Heb 12:22ff 22 But you have come to Mount Zion, to the heavenly Jerusalem, the city of the living God. You have come to thousands upon thousands of angels in joyful assembly, 23 to the church of the firstborn, whose names are written in heaven. You have come to God, the judge of all men, to the spirits of righteous men made perfect, 24 to Jesus the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.

25 See to it that you do not refuse him who speaks. If they did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, how much less will we, if we turn away from him who warns us from heaven? 26 At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, “Once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.” 27 The words “once more” indicate the removing of what can be shaken —that is, created things—so that what cannot be shaken may remain.

28 Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe, 29 for our “God is a consuming fire.”

DOMINION

In the story of the Old Testament the old creation, Israel walks in rebellion to God and gets removed from the Land and dominion is transferred to the gentiles.  Assyria, Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, Rome.  This is where the parallels stop!

We don’t find a New Testament counterpart to this in the story of the New Testament regarding the New Israel because the kingdom of God will never be shaken.

In Daniel 2, King Nebuchadnezzar had a dream of a large statue which represented the dominion of various kingdoms.  Daniel interprets that dream for him and virtually all scholars agree that the kingdoms represented in the dream are Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece, and Rome.  Daniel 2:44“In the time of those kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, nor will it be left to another people. It will crush all those kingdoms and bring them to an end, but it will itself endure forever.

The kingdom won’t be handed over to another people or taken away; it isn’t an earthly kingdom that can be taken by the sword or force as with earthly kingdoms.  It is a spiritual kingdom – an everlasting kingdom that will remain forever.  The saints have inherited the kingdom and will possess it forever.

SUMMARY

In the Old Testament we find the story of God and his people Israel.  This was manifest in physical earthly elements.

  • an earthly or natural Israel
  • built upon a foundation of twelve
  • expanded by natural birth
  • who experienced slavery in an earthly Egypt.
  • God raised up Moses to lead a literal exodus
  • initiated by the shedding of the blood of a Passover Lamb.
  • They ended up wandering for 40 years in a physical wilderness
  • before Joshua/Yeshua led them into their inheritance, a geographically defined Promised Land
  • where they lived under the administration of the Old Covenant
  • in which they practiced fleshly circumcision
  • had an earthly priesthood administering earthly rituals, making animal sacrifices
  • in an earthly temple in the midst of an earthly kingdom
  • which found its golden years under the reign of the son of David.

 

All of this served as types foreshadowing the spiritual realities found in the New Testament.

There we have the same story retold following the spiritual counterparts, the antitypes to these very same earthly elements.

  • A new beginning of a new Spiritual Israel
  • built upon a foundation of twelve
  • bringing forth spiritual descendants born from above through faith
  • a new Moses to lead an exodus out of a spiritual slavery in a spiritual Egypt
  • initiated by the shedding of the blood of Christ, our Passover Lamb
  • a forty year wandering in a spiritual wilderness
  • before a new Joshua/Yeshua led them into their inheritance
  • a heavenly habitation – a heavenly Jerusalem in the Kingdom of Heaven
  • to operate under the administration of a new covenant
  • where there is a spiritual circumcision of the heart
  • a spiritual temple
  • a heavenly kingdom of priests
  • under the reign of the Son of David.

 

CLARITY OF THE NATURE OF THE KINGDOM

Consider the benefits of studying typology.  First, it helps us to see nature of Kingdom more clearly.

When framing the Bible in terms of types and shadows it becomes easy to see how the Kingdom fits into the Biblical narrative contextually.  We see the antitypes that correspond to those Old Testament types and shadows.

We can see the nature of the Kingdom even more clearly as SPIRITUAL.  The Old Testament story of Israel is bound up in earthly natural, physical elements.  In the New Testament, we find their spiritual, heavenly counterparts.

That is the pattern, the flow of the narrative.  It goes from physical/fleshly/natural/earthly à spiritual.

When moving from the type to the antitype, from the shadow to the substance/reality, the movement is always towards that which is far greater, vastly superior, and more glorious.  It would be antithetical for God to bring forth a new creation that is spiritual, with a new birth that is spiritual, bring his people out of a slavery that is spiritual to wander in a wilderness that is spiritual in order to enter into a kingdom that’s PHYSICAL in a land that’s physical.  That’s not upgrading.  That’s downgrading.  It doesn’t follow the pattern or flow and it’s not what the Bible teaches.

APPRECIATING THE BIBLE

Understanding this framework of Biblical typology gives us an appreciation for beauty of the Bible as we see the wider Biblical narrative as one beautiful, homogenous story about God’s creation, Israel.  It helps us to formulate a cohesive, coherent, and consistent theology.

An understanding of the typological framework of Scripture also protects us from an unhealthy neglect of the Old Testament as well as an unhealthy emphasis on the Old Testament.  As citizens of Israel, it helps to see the value of the Old Testament as our heritage and our roots, but to recognize that the Old Covenant and all of its fleshly requirements were for natural Israel and not us, for we belong to the new covenant.

OUR PLACE IN THE NARRATIVE

Studying typology also helps us to understand where we fit in God’s story as we identify our Old Testament counterparts.  There is currently a lot of teaching in which believers are encouraged to find themselves in the narrative.  However, without a proper biblical framework it is easy to mistakenly identify our position.

To whom in the Old Testament do we correspond?  Of whom are we the spiritual counterparts?  We are clearly not the twelve; those were chosen in Jesus’ day and are found in Peter, James, John, Bartholomew, Matthew, Nathaniel, Judas and the others.  We are not those coming up out of spiritual Egypt.  That Egypt was judged in the first century with the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD.  Although it is a popular notion today, we are not amongst the generation wandering in the wilderness who have not yet received the inheritance of the Kingdom.  The Kingdom was given to the saints in the time of those kings, (Dan 2:44) which was the time of Ancient Rome.  Our spiritual ancestors received the kingdom 2000 years ago.

Our Old Testament counterparts are those dwelling in the land during Israel’s glory days during the reign of Solomon – a time of unprecedented peace prosperity, territorial expansion, during an administration characterized by wisdom, justice and righteousness.

This is where we find our place in God’s story.  We are the spiritual counterparts to those dwelling in Israel during the glorious reign of the son of David.  We dwell in the everlasting kingdom in the gloriously restored Israel and this glorious kingdom will remain forever; it will never be handed over or given to another people.

ENJOYING WHAT WE HAVE

There is a lot of teaching out there that says that we are still looking forward to the establishment of the kingdom.  In an American church inundated by that kind of teaching surely some false expectations have been established and one may be tempted to ask, “If the inheritance of the kingdom has been given already, what do we have to look forward to?”

Imagine you’re 14 years old and you came across a will written by your great grandparents, which decreed an inheritance of a mansion to be given.  If your parents inherited that mansion 10 years ago when you were four, would you look back at that document and say, well if the inheritance has already been given, what do I have to look forward to?  No, you rejoice that the inheritance was already given, and you continue enjoying the benefits of that inheritance as you were born into it and dwell in that BIG BIG HOUSE WITH LOTS AND LOTS OF ROOMS.

We aren’t amongst those looking forward to the kingdom.  The kingdom has come.  We are among those that get to enjoy the kingdom that has been given.  I don’t think anybody living during the reign of Solomon ever said, I sure am looking forward to the time when God will give us the Promised Land flowing with milk and honey where his name will dwell and establish a kingdom of unprecedented peace and prosperity with a son of David on the throne over a glorious kingdom.  They were already enjoying that.  They simply recognized what they had and enjoyed it.

As their spiritual counterparts we have the antitype of that which is far greater, vastly superior, and more glorious!  Let’s enjoy it!  We are dwelling in the Kingdom under the reign of the son of David, Jesus Christ who is wiser than Solomon and rules with more justice, and more righteousness.

We get to enjoy the spiritual prosperity, peace, freedom and rest of the glorious Heavenly Kingdom.

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