What do you know about the kingdom of heaven? How long has it existed? Does it change over time? Is it ready for you today? Have you ever pondered any of these questions? Would you like to know the answers?
The answer is both simple and a little complex. It really isn’t all that hard to understand. Yet we may get confused at times by the tense used when Jesus speaks of the kingdom of heaven. In fact, we see Jesus change tense when He is speaking, sometimes in mid-sentence.
The first thing we must remember is Jesus is God. The second thing we must remember is God is outside of time. He sees past, present, and future all at the same time. Therefore, when Jesus is speaking of the kingdom of heaven, we must keep this in mind.
We see in John 14:1-3 Jesus state He is going to prepare a place for us. Yet we see in today’s passage below the kingdom of heaven has been prepared since the creation of the world. Which is true? Both. Jesus is speaking as God when He speaks of the kingdom of heaven in this way.
In John 14 He is speaking directly to the Apostles. Peter has asked a question about when Jesus will be glorified and telling them they cannot follow at that time. Therefore, He is addressing them on their timeline. It is future for them.
In today’s passage Jesus is telling a parable. He is teaching, not speaking to a specific question. He is talking of His return and the separation of the sheep and goats. You might call to mind other parables such as the wheat and the weeds in a field (Matthew 13:24-30). This is about separating God’s people from those who have chosen to oppose Him.
Isn’t it comforting to know that God has a place in the kingdom of heaven prepared for you? He has everything set up and He is overjoyed to welcome you home. We might compare it to a parent welcoming home a college student who has been at an overseas university for several months. Or a parent who is welcoming home a child who has gone to boot camp and is coming home upon graduation for a few days. As a parent, we are proud, and we have prepared a wonderful welcome home for the child. God has prepared an even better place for us.
Knowing this, we can rest easy. We can be at peace. We can be assured of a wonderful place to spend eternity. We know there is light at the end of the tunnel. The pain, suffering, sadness, trials, and troubles of this world will come to an end and we will live forever in wonderful bliss.
I pray we all find comfort in knowing God has a place prepared for us. I pray we look forward to eternity spent with Him. I pray each one of us find peace today in God’s kingdom. Know that God is waiting for you. Know He has prepared a place for you. Trust Him. Find comfort, peace, and joy in Him. God loves you.
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.’”