(The Difference Between “The Kingdom Of God” And “The Kingdom Of Heaven”)
By Pastor Chris Oyakhilome
TO THE BIBLE: “Now after John was put in prison, Jesus came to Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel.”
In Matthew 11:11, the Master said: “Assuredly, I say to you, among those born of women there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist; but he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.”
It’s important for us to understand that the underlined portion above says, “…he who is least in the kingdom of heaven…” and not “…he who is least in the kingdom of God….” You might want to ask, “Is there a difference between the “Kingdom of God” (referenced here in Mark 1:15) and the “Kingdom of heaven?” The answer is “Emphatically yes!”
Both expressions, “the Kingdom of God” and “the Kingdom of Heaven,” though synonymously used, are clearly different. The Kingdom of God refers to all that’s under the influence of the Almighty God in heaven and on earth.
The Kingdom of heaven, on the other hand, has to do with the work of Jesus Christ on the earth; it’s the extension of the Kingdom of God on the earth, headed by Jesus Christ. The Kingdom of heaven is the Church, of which we’re a part.
So, when Jesus said he that is least in the Kingdom of heaven is greater than John the Baptist, He was talking about us—those who are joint-heirs with Him. We’re greater, because we’re the body of Christ, and each one of us has been exalted to sit together with Christ at the right hand of power (Ephesians 2:4-6).
Our greatness isn’t the result of human associations but a function of our oneness with Him; we have the same life with Him, having been born of His Word and His Spirit. We’re associates of the God-kind; we’re inextricably united with Him: “…he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him” (1 Corinthians 6:17).
Go Deeper: John 15:5,16
Speak: I’m a joint-heir with Christ; everything He has belongs to me, and my life is for His glory. I walk in boldness and confidence today, conscious of my inextricable union with Him. Hallelujah!
Daily Bible Reading: ONE YEAR James 1, Jeremiah 36-37
TWO YEAR John 12:42-50, 1 Chronicles 18
Act: Thank the Lord Jesus for putting you in His Kingdom, and declare that you’re in oneness with Him.