Lesson Two – Jesus, the King of God’s Kingdom

Jesus, the King of God’s Kingdom

Lesson Aim:  To show that under the new leadership God will have fruit in His kingdom.

Scripture:  Matt. 21:33-46.  Note:  This is the same parable we studied in Lesson One.
Please review the historical analysis section.


The writer of the Chronicles speaks of God’s kingdom as being in existence in the Old Testament with Solomon as the king (I Chron. 28:5).  King David was told by God, “And your house and your kingdom shall endure before Me forever, your throne shall be established forever.”  II Sam. 7:16.  God fulfilled this promise to David when Jesus became king after His resurrection (Luke 1:30-33; Acts 2:30-33).  Jesus spoke of God’s kingdom, or the kingdom of heaven, being at hand and He said it would “come with power” during the lifetime of the twelve apostles (Matt. 4:17; Mark 9:1).  Jesus is king over God’s kingdom, the same kingdom over which Saul, David and Solomon ruled (Matt. 8:10-12).  God has only one kingdom.  Christians have our citizenship in the same kingdom, but we have a new administration, a new spiritual territory and a new covenant.  God’s kingdom still exists in the world.  It is Jesus Christ’s kingdom because He is the king; however, God’s goals for His people are the same.  God’s plan to have children in His Kingdom is plausible “in Christ.”


Jesus is able to transfer believers from the dominion of Satan in the world to His rule “in Christ.”  See Acts 26:18; Col. 1:12, 13.  He calls people by preaching His kingdom (Acts 20:25).  Those who have faith in the message will turn to God in repentance (accept His new covenant.   Heb. 8:10-12) they will believe in our Lord Jesus (Acts 20:21).  These are different processes in the new birth.  The gospel message informs us we were created to be sons of God.  It also proclaims the graces of God that make it possible for us to have fellowship with God.  We believe Jesus is our king and priest; therefore, we accept the final new birth process.  In this process Christians die to sin and they are resurrected to life with Jesus. It happens in baptism in water (Rom. 6:1-10; I Pet. 3:21).  The Apostle Paul was blessed with the same new birth process before he preached it (Acts 22:14-16).  Consequently, those who have been born again of the water and Spirit are the church of God which Jesus purchased with His blood.  See John 3:3-6 and Acts 20:28.

Jesus said to the Jewish leadership, “The kingdom of God will be taken away from you, and be given to a nation producing the fruit of it.”  Matt. 21:43.  The church of Christ, functioning as the body of Christ, is blessed with the blessing and responsibility of “producing the fruit of it.”  See Eph. 4:14-16.  The specific fruit God wants from humanity can be clearly understood by the statement the Hebrew writer makes about Jesus’ next “round trip” from heaven.

For it was fitting for Him, for whom are all things, And through whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to perfect the author of their salvation through sufferings.  For both He who sanctifies and those who are sanctified are all from one Father; for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren.  Heb 2:10, 11

We believe Jesus will bring back to God the fruit He wants from earth, no more and no less.  The Apostle Paul referred to these “sons” Jesus will bring to God as sons and daughters while we are still members of the church.  See II Corinthians 6:17, 18.  The sons and daughters of God, who conform to the likeness of Christ and remain faithful until we die, will inherit the kingdom and receive, or inherit, the crown of life at Judgment.  See Rom. 8:29; Heb. 11:13; I Pet. 1:3-5; James 1:12; 2:5.  A broad description of what our inheritance will mean to us can be understood from Chapter Two of the Roman letter:

…who will render to every man according to his deeds: (v. 6)

to those who by perseverance in doing good seek glory and honor and immortality, eternal life. (v. 7)

The following is what eternal life will mean to us.

…but glory and honor and peace to every man who does good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. (v. 10)

Christians wait for Jesus to come again to bring God’s children home.  The Apostle Paul explained it like this:

Then comes the end, when He delivers up the kingdom to the God and Father, when He has abolished all rule and all authority and power.  I Cor. 15:24

Upon Jesus’ return, the members of the church who are rewarded our inheritance will be a permanent part of this kingdom Jesus will turn back to God.  Our identification as “church of Christ” will not be our identifier in heaven.  It belongs to time.  We now have been “called out,” thus we are the called out (church).  We were called out and delivered “from the domain of darkness, and transferred to the kingdom of His beloved Son.”  Col. 1:13.  We will inherit this same kingdom on Judgment Day.  It was God’s kingdom before Jesus was given the rule to produce fruit for God.  It will be God’s kingdom with us there as the fruit from God’s creation.  “And when all things are subjected to Him, then the Son Himself also will be subjected to the One who subjected all things to Him, that God may be all in all.”  I Cor. 15:28.

The question now is: Why should the citizens of God’s kingdom produce the fruit of righteousness today when they were not able to do so before?  Why should we be able to be “covenant keepers” when the generations before broke the covenants God provided for them?  The new covenant must be accepted in our repentance before our baptism for the remission of our sins.  It is one process in our new birth.  It is the key to developing sons of God.  See Heb. 8:10-12.  The New Testament is just full of answers to these questions but it is all summed up in the following scripture:

But now He (Jesus) has obtained a more excellent ministry, by as much as He is also the mediator of a better covenant, which has been enacted on better promises.  Heb. 8:6

Jesus Christ, Himself, personally is the reason for our success when we have faith in Him.  Along with being our king, He is our high priest, our sin offering, our teacher and our role model brother.  Jesus quoted Psalms 118:22, 23 in our lesson text.  The Apostle Peter quoted from Isaiah and also the same Psalm.

For this is contained in Scripture:  ‘Behold I lay in Zion a choice stone, a precious corner stone, and he who believes in Him shall not be disappointed.’  This precious value, then, is for you who believe, for those who disbelieve, ‘The stone which the builders rejected, this became the very corner stone, and a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense;’ for they stumble because they are disobedient to the word, and to this doom they were also appointed.  I Pet. 2:6-8

Jesus added to this another statement regarding those who reject His kingship.

And he who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; but on whomever it falls, it will scatter him like dust.  Matt. 21:44

In our previous lesson we learned from the Old Testament how God always found it necessary to separate those who were trying to serve Him from the other people.  The same thing is happening today.  The process of separation was put in action when Jesus became the stone of Zion.

We see two groups from the above Scripture: those who use Jesus upon which to build a fruitful life and those who stumble over Him.  All people will do one or the other.  Many will stumble over Him and never know it, others willfully reject Him. Then there will be the remnant who will strive to reinvent ourselves by developing as sons of God.  Christians overcome temptations by taking advantage of the blessed things Jesus did for us.

The death of Jesus was for our transgressions.  It gave us the final process of our new birth and that is the work of God in our baptism in water (Col. 2:12, 13; Acts 8:36).  A Christian’s new birth creates our personal dividing line in God’s present program of separation.  The two realms available to mankind are identified as the world and Christ’s kingdom in John 15:19 and 18:36.  The Apostle Paul freely used the term “in Christ” in his letter to the church at Ephesus to identify the realm in which Christ reigns as king.  Please read chapter one.   Satan rules the world realm (Eph. 2:1-3).

The blood shed by Jesus on the cross works for us during the new birth by removing our old body of sin.  It continues to work for our justification in Christ.  (To understand the doctrine of justification by faith read Romans 3:21-26).  His resurrection was for our justification (Rom. 4:25).  Our justification is one function of Jesus’ priesthood.  The result is peace with God while the Holy Spirit works with us to strengthen our weaknesses and boost our strengths (Rom. 5:1-5; Heb. 12:12, 13).

We are continually cleansed by the blood of Jesus “in Christ” as we walk by faith.  Therefore, the Holy Spirit can continually fellowship us and help us as our personal minister as we bear the fruit of sonship for God (Acts 5:32; Rom. 8:12-16; II Cor. 13:14; I John 3:24).  The Holy Spirit leads us by the word of God but He also works to strengthen our inner man in some other ways (Eph. 3:16).  He inspired those who wrote the Bible (II Tim. 3:16, 17).  His key role for Christians is sanctification (II Thess. 2:13; I Pet. 1:2).  Just before Jesus told this parable in our text to the Jewish leadership, He had ridden into Jerusalem on a donkey quoting Scripture from the prophets.

Say to the daughter of Zion, behold your King is coming to you, gentle, and mounted upon a donkey, even upon a colt, the foal of a beast of burden.  Matt. 21:5

The crowd responded with:  “Hosanna to the Son of David; blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest!”  Matt. 21:9.  This was an outward show by the Jewish people at the coronation of their new leader.  Jesus was probably the only one who really knew what was happening.  It did happen and we reap the benefits.  God’s kingdom is now ruled by a king who first proved His love for His subjects by spending time in a human body like ours, teaching us the doctrines, making promises for our future, showing the life of the kingdom and dying for our sins.  He qualified Himself to be our priest before He became king.

The human element has been completely removed from high places in God’s kingdom today.  Most of the failures on the part of Israel to serve God were charged to their leadership.  Beginning with Saul, very few of Israel’s kings served God.  The Levitical priesthood had been scandalized even before a man was named as king.  Jesus is now both king and priest.

When each church functions as the body of Christ and leaves the big decisions to the head, Jesus Christ, we are able to be fruitful.  When churches use boards and special offices, they put human beings in positions God did not ordain.  The first departure from Jesus’ rule would be a change in church government.  All offices above the local church level have already been filled by Jesus Christ.  He has directed the local churches to ordain elders in each church (Acts 14:23).  Men with their qualifications do not need to hire professionals to teach and oversee the church (I Tim. 3:1-7; Tit. 1:5-9).

The primary reason Christians’ are able to produce fruit in God’s kingdom today is because we have divine leadership.  We must be careful to maintain God’s system of church leadership as revealed in the New Testament.  Another system will lead with human wisdom and God will not receive the fruit He desires.  Don’t forget!  God wants each of us to be His son in His eternal kingdom.  Jesus will deliver to God the fruit He desires.  God’s desire for children like Jesus is the reason for His creation (Heb. 12:5-11).

Questions for Discussion

  1. Solomon and Jesus were, and Jesus still is, kings over whose kingdom?
  2. Give the promises made to David that gave Christians our king today.
  3. Name the kingdom that was taken away from the Jewish leadership and given to another people.
  4. Why should Christians be able to produce fruit for God?
  5. Where does the process of separation for each Christian start today?
  6. What is the result of justification by faith?
  7. List the two realms in which people have a choice to dwell.
  8. What was the significance of Jesus’ ride into Jerusalem on a donkey?
  9. What element has been removed from God’s kingdom that gave Israel a lot of trouble?
  10. Why should the big decisions in the church be left to Jesus in God’s kingdom?

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