Ask a Franciscan

What Is the Kingdom of God?

Please explain in simple language the concept of the kingdom of God.

What Jesus means by the expression the kingdom of God is accepting God’s values as trustworthy and enough, not needing any “improvements,” as we often describe them.

Unfortunately, many of Jesus’ critics during his lifetime were like the Statler and Waldorf characters in The Muppets, the two grumpy old men who sit in the balcony and freely offer critiques about everyone else’s work. Those critics live on today. C.S. Lewis once observed that some people would rather be Jesus’ critics than his disciples.

Accepting the kingdom of God means being wide open to God’s grace, being content with any place at the heavenly banquet, and rejoicing in whoever is across from me or next to me.

When the kingdom of God has taken deep root in a person’s life, there is no sense of “If only I had X, then my life would be complete.” God is enough for those who accept God’s values and the kingdom that these promote.

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