Here are a couple great explanations of the Kingdom of God and its accompanying theology:
“The [kingdom of God] is the abstract or dynamic idea of reign, rule, or dominion…” – George Eldon Ladd
“… the kingdom of God is the central theological motif that gives definition to all that we believe.” – Phil Strout
“… the Vineyard is a movement distinctively centered in a renewed understanding of the centrality of the kingdom of God in biblical thought… [we understand] the kingdom of God as the overarching and integrating theme of the Bible.” – Vineyard Core Values
So a basic summary of Kingdom Theology might be:
- Inaugurated, not consummated.
- Both now and not yet.
- The kingdom has come, comes, and is coming (breaking in).
- The reign and rule of God (cf. Matt. 6:10).
But why does kingdom theology matter? Why is having a solid kingdom of God framework vitally important? Here are four simple answers to that question:
- Kingdom theology is the same message that Jesus and the apostles preached (Matt. 3:2; 4:17; Acts 8:12; 14:22; 20:25; 28:23-31).
- Kingdom theology centers our theology and praxis on King Jesus and his kingdom versus our own kingdom (Matt. 26:39; Col. 13).
- Kingdom theology is the only way to explain why miracles happen and why we continue to pray for God to break in, for heaven to come to earth. (Matt. 12:28).
- Kingdom theology is the only way to somewhat explain why miracles don’t happen and why everyone isn’t healed (Rev. 21:4).
Those are four quick ways in which I think kingdom theology matters.
What would you add?
Luke is a pastor-theologian living in northern California, serving as a co-lead pastor with his life, Dawn, at the Red Bluff Vineyard. Father of five amazing kids, when Luke isn’t hanging with his family, reading or writing theology, he moonlights as a fly fishing guide for Confluence Outfitters. He blogs regularly at LukeGeraty.com and regularly contributes to his YouTube channel.