RE:QUESTA space for resources to help RE teachers and their students explore the Christian faith
Lat Blaylock, Editor, RE Today
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Jesus' Teaching: The Kingdom of God
What did Jesus teach about the Kingdom of God?
Jesus taught a lot about the Kingdom of God; it was central to his teaching. But what exactly is the Kingdom of God, and how do people enter it?
WHAT IS THE KINGDOM OF GOD?
Christians believe that the Kingdom of God is not a physical place on earth, you cannot draw a map of it or visit it for holidays. The Kingdom of God is the domain over which God reigns as King. So wherever God is 'in charge,' that's where his kingdom is. This means any person who puts God first carries the Kingdom of God within them, as they go about helping the poor and sick.
HOW TO ENTER THE KINGDOM OF GOD
Jesus taught that to enter the Kingdom of God, people must be born again. That is when they decide not to follow their own ways, which are often self-centered, but to live a new life with God in control. Jesus often compared the kingdom of God to a seed planted in the hearts of men and women. Everyone has the seed of the kingdom within them, but it will grow only if given the proper 'care and feeding.'
Jesus talks about this in his famous Parable of the Sower:
“A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants. Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop—a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown. Whoever has ears, let them hear.” (Matthew 13:3-9)
At another time Jesus said that in order to inherit the Kingdom of God a person must become like a child.
People often discuss what Jesus meant. What do you think he meant? Why do you think Jesus would want people to be more like children than adults?