16 Feb 2014

The Kingdom of God

Religious 29 Comments

A short post but perhaps profound. I was explaining to my son that Jesus would not so much talk about “getting into heaven” but rather about the Kingdom of God (or in some gospels the Kingdom of heaven, but it’s clear that it’s in an earthly context). I went on to explain that Jesus never really defined it, but from the context clues you sure understand that it was the most important thing to seek.

Then it occurred to me–duh–that the Kingdom of God is precisely that area that falls under God’s sovereignty. So when you recognize that God is in control of your life, then you have achieved the Kingdom of God. At that point, it is within you, and you will achieve utter peace and joy.

I know there are many readers of this blog who won’t like the above statements. Well, that’s what I think the fabric of reality simply is, and I’m telling it as I see it. If a doctor says, “Drinking milkshakes twice a day will end up making you miserable,” you don’t refute him by saying, “I don’t want to live in that kind of a world.”

29 Responses to “The Kingdom of God”

  1. Ken B says:

    Well you convinced me, but I know of a long dead Galilean Jew who might disagree. He talked about coming with power on clouds, and it happening not in the life of each person over time, but before his generation passed away. And scorched trees. (I don’t get the scorched tree.) So that guy, that long crucified guy they talk about, I doubt he’d agree.

  2. Jonathan Finegold says:

    (Semi-serious:) I’m sure there are people who both believe in God and live miserable lives. That’s a pretty bourgeois interpretation of heaven.

    • Tel says:

      I thought it sounded kind of Buddhist.

  3. ThomasL says:

    The phrase “Kingdom of Heaven” has traditionally been understood as meaning the Church–simultaneously in an institutional sense and in a mystical sense as the “Body of Christ”.

    Both senses operate at once, because you have images such as the wheat and tares/sheep and goats that show that within this world and institutional Church (the earthly kingdom) there are those that are not part of the Body (the heavenly Jerusalem). Likewise there are those that are outside the institution that are nevertheless citizens of the heavenly kingdom (while not diminishing the importance of the institutional Christ founded and then built up through the Apostles).

    If you have any chance at all, I’d recommend reading St. Augustine’s ‘City of God’ which handles this topic at length (over a thousand pages of length). It is a philosophical and theological masterpiece from one of the greatest early saints.

    • ThomasL says:

      I was trying to be brief when I used “earthly kingdom” as a phrase. That really is a very poor word choice.

      The point is precisely to *contrast* the “City of God” to the “City of Men”.

  4. joe says:

    Baby Bush said God wanted him to invade Iraq.

    • Tel says:

      God could have stopped him.

      • joe says:

        But God didn’t because America needed to waste a couple trillion and destroy a few hundred thousand lives? The lord works in mysterious ways.

        Bush ‘crusade’ against terrorists

  5. Ivan Jankovic says:

    this is probably the best book on this problem:

    • Ken B says:

      I have recommended that book on this blog repeatedly.

  6. Harold says:

    “If a doctor says, “Drinking milkshakes twice a day will end up making you miserable,” Surely you would respond that this is outside the doctors area of expertise. He may say it will make you ill, but only you can decide if this will make you more miserable than forgoing the pleasure of milkshakes.

  7. Gamble says:


    Since you are not 1 of the 12, this is the part you were supposed to hone in on.

    ‘Seeing they may see and not perceive,
    And hearing they may hear and not understand;
    Lest they should turn,
    And their sins be forgiven them.’”
    ‘Hearing you will hear and shall not understand,
    And seeing you will see and not perceive;
    For the hearts of this people have grown dull.
    Their ears are hard of hearing,
    And their eyes they have closed,
    Lest they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears,
    Lest they should understand with their hearts and turn,
    So that I should heal them.’

    Throw this in for the bigger picture

    John 18:36
    Jesus answered, “My Kingdom is not an earthly kingdom. If it were, my followers would fight to keep me from being handed over to the Jewish leaders. But my Kingdom is not of this world.”

    (MF atheist in 3,2,1…I love to watch people arguing with and attempting to disprove the non-existent;)

  8. John Becker says:

    Off-topic but I saw “Dallas Buyer’s Club” this weekend and recommend it to any libertarian. It’s basically the story of voluntary exchange fighting against the evils of a giant bureaucracy-the FDA.

    • Gamble says:

      Dallas Buyers Club is on VUDU, I have been meaning to watch it. Speaking of Matthew McConaughey, Mud was a great movie.

      I recently went to see the LEGO movie, it has some interesting subject anarchist subject matter.

      • John Becker says:

        Dallas Buyer’s Club is a much more straightforward glorification of markets and shows the evils of bureaucracy much more clearly than the LEGO movie.

        • Gamble says:

          I usually stream a movie once per week, I will watch DBC, Friday.

  9. TravisV says:

    Hi Bob,

    TravisV from TheMoneyIllusion comments section here:

    General question: what are the prevailing theories for why the gold standard failed in the 1930′s? The view of Sumner, Glasner, Irwin is (1) WWI really skewed the equilibrium, which eventually led to (2) excessive gold hoarding by the French central bank, then by the U.S. central bank, etc. etc.

    Are there competing Austrian theories floating out there? What does Bob Murphy believe? Peter Schiff? George Selgin? Larry White?

    • John Becker says:

      Do Bob a favor and look at his “Politically Incorrect Guide to the Great Depression and the New Deal.” That’s where you’ll find the real free market take on that subject.

      • TravisV says:

        Jim Caton answered my question by providing links here:


      • TravisV says:


        Could you provide a quick summary of Bob’s answer to my question in “The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Great Depression and the New Deal”?

        • John Becker says:

          Ok but with the caveat that I am probably doing the theory an injustice so if you have a problem with the theory you should respond to what the book says and not how I summarize it.

          1.World War I was the end of the proper gold standard. Period. It was a gold exchange standard where citizens abroad using foreign currencies could no longer turn their money into gold.

          2. The deflation following the stock market crash wasn’t particularly bad. The Fed responded in the wrong way by sharply cutting the discount rate and trying to inflate.

    • Major_Freedom says:


      The gold standard is a choice. If there arise individuals who use force to impose a fiat system, that doesn’t imply that the gold standard “failed.”. For if we start understanding failure in that way, then it would mean a “successful” monetary system is one that withstands and resists all human choice. Such a monetary system would not even be a monetary system created by man at all.

      In other words, just because violent people prevent X from taking place, that doesn’t mean X is a “failure.”

  10. Major_Freedom says:

    “If a doctor says, “Drinking milkshakes twice a day will end up making you miserable,” you don’t refute him by saying, “I don’t want to live in that kind of a world.””

    What if the doctor says that *believing* drinking milkshakes twice a day is the path to happiness and joy? Then a response of “It doesn’t make me happy or joyful, and I wouldn’t want to live in such a world” would be a valid rebuttal. And that is exactly when such a rebuttal is most often used.

  11. knoxharrington says:

    Will somebody please get Bob a bushel under which he may hide his light. Please. I’m begging you.

    • Ken B says:

      What irks me is the whirling circle game Bob plays. His views are holy because they come from the bible. But then you see things like this, where he replaces what the bible actually says with his own preferences. So Bob reads into the bible any damned thing he wants and then reads out of it divine sanction. It’s like a perpetual motion machine.

      • ThomasL says:

        This is one tip in favor of Catholicism. The Church does not have occasion to define dogmas or doctrines often, but when She does She says, “No, it means *this*, and if anyone says differently than ‘anathema est’.”

        Now, one may not like what She says it means, but it does get off the “it means whatever you think it means” train.

      • knoxharrington says:

        Absolutely right. Bob is not alone in this – they all do it. From Westboro Baptist to high church Presbyterians – they read their personal preferences into the bible and then derive them back out as holy writ.

        Nasty, hypocritical, dangerous business.

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