Are We Currently Living In The Kingdom Of God

For those alive right now are we living in The Kingdom Of God? I have read “The Rapture Trap” by Paul Thigpen and watched a few videos on you tube dealing with this subject from a Catholic perspective, and am having a tough time wrapping my head around the convoluted end time scenarios that float around some Protestant circles. A novice at apologetics I am of the opinion that at Pentecost if not before like in the birth of Jesus Christ, we are indeed living in the Kingdom of God.

Any information on this matter would be appreciated.

Yes, the Church is the kingdom of God. I am not necessarily referring to only the Bishops and such, though that is a part of it. The Kingdom will be unveiled in all its glory at Christ’s parousia.


I am not an expert on rapture and tribulation theories, but here is what I gathered as an observer:

-Catholics believe the communion of saints, the church, include Christians in heaven and earth as one body (Eph 1, Col 3), which is not separated by death (Rom 8).
-Catholics believe the 1,000 year reign is already here in a larger sense.
-Catholics believe there will be one second coming of Jesus as described in Matthew 25 and other parts of scripture.

-Some non Catholics believe that heaven is empty of humans spirits. They will only go to heaven after the second coming.
-Some non-C’s also believe the 1,000 year reign will only ensue after the second-coming, rapture and tribulation. The church in heaven is totally cut off from us now.
-This non-C version of events means that the second coming will happen in stages - e.g. the rapture verses the tribulation- because the elect will not have to suffer the tribulation.

Catholics believe in a rapture, but do not hold these view regarding “stages”, a future 1,000 year reign, and “tribulation” as an accurate interpretation of scripture.

My understanding is these theories were developed by John Nelson Darby in the 19th century.

Did you know that the phrase, “Kingdom of God” occurs 122 times in the New Testament?

Did you know that 99 of these occurrences are found in the synoptic gospels (Matthew, Mark, and Luke)?

Did you know that 90 of those 99 occurrences come from the mouth of Jesus?

Yeah, me neither. That was until I read Jesus of Nazareth, volume 1 by, now, pope emeritus Benedict. If you haven’t yet read it yet, you really should.

let’s examine three historic and harmonizing interperetations of the kingdom of God, each of which shed light on this important concept.

The Christological Dimension

Here we see that “the Kingdom is not a thing, it is not a geographical dominion like worldly kingdoms. It is a person; it is he. On this interpretation, the term ‘Kingdom of God’ is itself a veiled Christology. By the way in which he speaks of the Kingdom of God, Jesus leads men to realize the overwhelming fact that in him God himself is present among them, that he is God’s presence.” (Pope Benedict, Jesus of Nazareth, Part 1)

The Idealistic/Mystical Dimension

Here we see that The Kingdom of God resides in the heart of man. Church Father, Origen wrote, “those who pray for the coming of the Kingdom of God pray without any doubt for the Kingdom of God that they contain in themselves, and they pray that this kingdom might bear fruit and attain its fullness.”

The Ecclesiastical Dimension

Here we see that the kingdom of God is in the here and now, present in and through the Church. Yet it is a mixed reality that will only be perfectly realized at the end of history. This current “mixed” state can be seen as the Church on earth which now grows in the field of the world with both weeds and wheat until the harvest when Christ says he will “tell the reapers, Gather the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned. But gather the wheat into my barn” (Matt 13:30).

We pray “Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” It’s a work in progress. Keep on praying, and keep on working with hope toward that destiny.

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