The Kingdom of Heaven

After Jesus was tempted by the devil and the angels ministered to him (Matthew 4:1-11), he discovered that John the Baptist had been cast into prison. He left left his home in Nazareth and moved his ministry to Capernaum located along the sea coast in the borders of Zabulon and Nephthalim. Again, this action that he takes fulfills another prophecy. (Isaiah 9:1-2). As we have seen, Matthew is making a point of noting when Jesus fulfills Messianic prophecy.

At this point, Matthew sees Jesus as a great light for the people. This light in the Greek is phos a word means underived and absolute light–the opposite of all darkness. Our word “phosphorus” comes from this Greek word. Phosphorus has an underived light that doesn’t seem to come from anywhere, it produces light that seems to have no source. Matthew sees that Jesus is no ordinary man.

Jesus began to preach,  and his ministry begins with encouraging people to repent, but he does more than tell them to repent. He tells them that literally “the Kingdom of the heavens is at hand.”  What Jesus tells them is that the purpose of  re-establishing the kingdom of God over this rebellious part of God’s realm. this term is only found in Mathew’s gospel. It is a dispensational term and refers to the Messiah’s kingdom on the earth.

The parables that Jesus later tells here in Matthew that has to do with the Kingdom of Heaven applies to the time when the Messiah establishes his kingdom here on earth that lasts forever. The kingdom of Heaven was then and continues to be offered to anyone who wants to believe. What Jesus had to offer was an offer that would transcend forever.

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