If we hope to see how everything that the Bible says fits together, we must always go back to the firm conviction that undergirded everything that the biblical authors wrote: God is the Sovereign of the universe and “from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen” (Rom. 11:36).
the place of the kingdom
A second crucial facet of God’s kingdom is that creation is the place of God’s kingdom. Jesus summed up this ubiquitous biblical teaching when He taught us to pray, “Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” (Matt. 6:10). Notice where Jesus longed to see God’s will done—on earth as it is in heaven.
In God’s heavenly throne room, every creature obeys God’s commands (2 Chron. 18:18; Job 1:6; Isa. 6:1–3; Rev. 4:2–11). You would, too, if you were before God’s glorious throne in heaven. In one way or another, every passage of Scripture reveals how God is accomplishing His infallible, royal plan for history, how He will be glorified as obedience to His commands spreads throughout the earth as well.
In the opening chapters of Genesis, God planted a sacred garden with the goal that His kingdom would fill the whole earth with obedient servants one day. Sin led to humanity’s expulsion from Eden and corruption of the physical world. Yet, in the days of Moses, God led Israel back to what was likely the original location of Eden, to the place we call the promised land. God’s kingdom advanced in the promised land and beyond its borders, especially in the days of David and Solomon. But over time, Israel rebelled against God, and He drove them into exile. For centuries, God’s kingdom on earth languished. Still, even as they anticipated this terrible time in history, God’s prophets boldly proclaimed that one day “all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of our God” (Isa. 52:10).
The New Testament explains how Christ fulfilled this prophetic hope. He began in earnest as He ministered in the promised land and sent His disciples to spread God’s kingdom to every nation on earth. Jesus continues to extend the kingdom throughout the world now through the proclamation of the gospel, and the kingdom of God will reach the ends of the earth when He returns in glory. On that day, every follower of Christ will see that “the kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he shall reign forever and ever” (Rev. 11:15).
Nearly every page of the Bible speaks of the history of events on our planet. If we hope to understand how these countless events fit together, we must always keep in mind that all events in the past, the present, and the future unfold according to our divine King’s one great plan. They reveal how God is glorified as His kingdom comes and His will is done on earth as it is in heaven.
the servants of the kingdom
This brings us to a third facet of what every biblical author believed: Human beings are the servants of God’s kingdom. All kinds of people, doing all sorts of things, appear throughout the Bible. But above all, the Scriptures teach that human beings, in one way or another, will be used to bring about the spread of the kingdom throughout the earth.