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The Christian Church/The Kingdom of Heaven.


Will Due
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I thought it would be interesting to explore the difference between a couple of things.

When picturing in your mind the Christian Church and the kingdom of heaven, it immediately becomes clear that they are not the same thing. One is spiritual and the other is mainly social.

 
The Christian Church, as it developed into what it is today, became a substitute for being individually spirit-led and a believer in the teaching that the kingdom of heaven is the enthronement of doing the Father's will in the heart of the individual. "The kingdom is within you".

 

 

"Mistake not! there is in the teachings of Jesus an eternal nature which will not permit them forever to remain unfruitful in the hearts of thinking men. The kingdom as Jesus conceived it has to a large extent failed on earth; for the time being, an outward church has taken its place; but you should comprehend that this church is only the larval stage of the thwarted spiritual kingdom, which will carry it through this material age and over into a more spiritual dispensation where the Master’s teachings may enjoy a fuller opportunity for development. Thus does the so-called Christian church become the cocoon in which the kingdom of Jesus’ concept now slumbers. The kingdom of the divine brotherhood is still alive and will eventually and certainly come forth from this long submergence

 

Jesus' Concept of the Kingdom

 

 

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one of them repeatedly covers up instances of child rape within their ranks.  that seems a major possible difference right off the bat.

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Posted (IP: Staff) ·

The Christian Church is a man-made religious construct that is participated in by the living in a tangible way. Much like many organized religions. The Christian Church has many thousands of variants globally, with a few hundred being better known, and several dozen being fairly popular in practice. 

The Kingdom of Heaven is a theory or thought of something outside mankinds living tangible existence. Multiple religions have the notion of a Heaven, or a goodly place of afterlife for the human soul. Some faiths do not have the concept of such. Within the Christian Church, there are variants as to what Heaven is, or what mankinds interaction with it is- that can depend on which variant of church the Christians are. 

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There is no sin in the Kingdom of Heaven which is the difference.

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6 minutes ago, Davros of Skaro said:

There is no sin in the Kingdom of Heaven which is the difference.

Hi Davros

Maybe when people go to heaven they will be like Adam and Eve before the apple and not know the difference of good and evil then everything is fair game.:whistle:

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1 minute ago, jmccr8 said:

Hi Davros

Maybe when people go to heaven they will be like Adam and Eve before the apple and not know the difference of good and evil then everything is fair game.:whistle:

Adam & Eve were not made to imitate the Father, but the Firstborn was.

:innocent:

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Interesting question,  Will.

To me churches are like football clubs, where like minded people  come together for affirmation and support,  and to better understand the rules of the game  (as understood by that club)

You can, of course, go directly to the football code /rule book, and interpret it yourself. 

The kingdom of heaven has two possible  types.

First, I absolutely agree with you that there is a spiritual kingdom of heaven which exists within us. and is built on a foundational, personal, relationship between an individual and god. 

There may also, however, be a literal "kingdom of heaven"  ie a system of governance spanning the galaxy and overseen by a central authority  

It is not really a kingdom, but to medieval people, that was the form of governance they understood

We would see it more as a centralised bureaucracy, with different arms of government, and a hierarchy of civil servants.  

The leader is a benevolent autocrat, who allows a lot of freedom by individuals and societies, to evolve, grow and learn. 

 

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The Christian Church?  Does that mean all the protestants are returning to the flock?

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Posted (edited)
On 4/11/2022 at 11:24 AM, Mr Walker said:

Interesting question,  Will.

To me churches are like football clubs, where like minded people  come together for affirmation and support,  and to better understand the rules of the game  (as understood by that club)

You can, of course, go directly to the football code /rule book, and interpret it yourself. 

The kingdom of heaven has two possible  types.

First, I absolutely agree with you that there is a spiritual kingdom of heaven which exists within us. and is built on a foundational, personal, relationship between an individual and god. 

There may also, however, be a literal "kingdom of heaven"  ie a system of governance spanning the galaxy and overseen by a central authority  

It is not really a kingdom, but to medieval people, that was the form of governance they understood

We would see it more as a centralised bureaucracy, with different arms of government, and a hierarchy of civil servants.  

The leader is a benevolent autocrat, who allows a lot of freedom by individuals and societies, to evolve, grow and learn. 

 

So, totally not like a football club.

Edited by Golden Duck
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1 minute ago, Golden Duck said:

So totally not like a football club.

To me membership of a church is almost   identical to membership of a football club. It has benefits and  costs/disadvantages but offers mutual support and affirmation. However you don't need to be a member to follow the football or attend matches.

  Faith is like that. You don't need a church, or to attend a church.  It is all in the love of the game 

The kingdom of heaven  can be the way a person responds to faith. ie totally inside their mind 

However if god is real, then it can also refer to the way the galaxy is governed 

In one sense this would be like the way football is governed in a country, with a hierarchy, leader, rules etc. 

You can be kicked out from membership of a football club but can only be turned away from  love of the game, for your own reasons. 

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10 minutes ago, Golden Duck said:

The Christian Church?  Does that mean all the protestants are returning to the flock?

A Christian is anyone who follows Christ.

Any church whose  members follow Christ is thus a Christian church. 

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2 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

To me membership of a church is almost   identical to membership of a football club. It has benefits and  costs/disadvantages but offers mutual support and affirmation. However you don't need to be a member to follow the football or attend matches.

  Faith is like that. You don't need a church, or to attend a church.  It is all in the love of the game 

The kingdom of heaven  can be the way a person responds to faith. ie totally inside their mind 

However if god is real, then it can also refer to the way the galaxy is governed 

In one sense this would be like the way football is governed in a country, with a hierarchy, leader, rules etc. 

You can be kicked out from membership of a football club but can only be turned away from  love of the game, for your own reasons. 

Affirmation is missing from football clubs.  That's why Monday's Experts get a gig.

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2 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

A Christian is anyone who follows Christ.

Any church whose  members follow Christ is thus a Christian church. 

I guess I just have an eye for detail.

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1 minute ago, Golden Duck said:

Affirmation is missing from football clubs.  That's why Monday's Experts get a gig.

Members affirm other members that they are right, and their team is the best.  The y provide social and psychological affirmation that each member is wise and right.  They even [rovide affirmation that the time spent on football is worthwhile. 

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On 4/10/2022 at 12:17 AM, Will Due said:

When picturing in your mind the Christian Church and the kingdom of heaven, it immediately becomes clear that they are not the same thing. One is spiritual and the other is mainly social.

Jesus said the kingdom of heaven is at hand.  

It's right in front of you.  It's right here, right now.  This is all  you have.  Right now is all you will ever have.  THIS is the Kingdom of Heaven.  

No wonder so many people miss it.  ....that was a good breath...

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2 minutes ago, Golden Duck said:

I guess I just have an eye for detail.

Interesting comment  How would you define a christian church? Or indeed a christian person? By detail, do you mean you have a very narrow definition of both/either. 

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Just now, joc said:

Jesus said the kingdom of heaven is at hand.  

It's right in front of you.  It's right here, right now.  This is all  you have.  Right now is all you will ever have.  THIS is the Kingdom of Heaven.  

No wonder so many people miss it.  ....that was a good breath...

This is true, but may not be the whole truth.  ie while we have it now, it doesn't mean  that it is all we will ever have. 

To have it now is wondrous, and enough, but there is  no harm in hoping for more. 

I think it is true that those who live within the kingdom, or in whom the kingdom dwells, have less need for it, than those who live a hard /tough life now, and want something more after death.

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1 minute ago, Mr Walker said:

Members affirm other members that they are right, and their team is the best.  The y provide social and psychological affirmation that each member is wise and right.  They even [rovide affirmation that the time spent on football is worthwhile. 

This absolutely not the the case.  Everyone, is always second guessing the coach or selectors.

The club is put to the test every weekend.  Psycholigical affirmation does not exist in the shadow of a wooden spoon.

Fans, members, and the board are constantly scrutinising the management and players in the quest for results.

This is simply a poor analogy.

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8 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

A Christian is anyone who follows Christ.

Any church whose  members follow Christ is thus a Christian church. 

I ventured off of the Bliss Train for a breath of fresh air.  I didn't find one, so I will just breath my own bottled fresh air.

No...you are Wrong Sir!  A Christian...as defined by the Church is someone who Believes in God the Father Almighty, Maker of Heaven and Earth and in the rest of the Apostles Creed.  It doesn't matter how you live your life.  It doesn't matter if you follow Christ's examples...all that matters is that you  B E L I E V E!

You can literally follow all of Christ's teachings and live the way he did and you would still not be a Christian.  You must Believe.  

Not you, nor I, nor anyone else gets to define Christianity...only the Church gets to do that!  ...alrighty then

...getting back on the train now, this proved to be just a little too stressful...we are going into the mountains now, cool fresh air, trees, wilderness, reality...

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6 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

Interesting comment  How would you define a christian church? Or indeed a christian person? By detail, do you mean you have a very narrow definition of both/either. 

No.  I consider "a" and "the" convey different meaning.

That's the language used in the OP and the title.

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Just now, Golden Duck said:

This absolutely not the the case.  Everyone, is always second guessing the coach or selectors.

The club is put to the test every weekend.  Psycholigical affirmation does not exist in the shadow of a wooden spoon.

Fans, members, and the board are constantly scrutinising the management and players in the quest for results.

This is simply a poor analogy.

If this is true, then it also resembles  some churches  and how their members behave  toward church leaders and even god 

If you don't like one team you swap allegiances to another or give up attending at all.

Faith is put to the test every day  If your team lets you down it can hurt

I was pointing out the difference between a church/team and individual faith/belief (in the game or in the power of god ) 

You must have difernt psychological make up to me, and to many. Even  the supporters of "wooden  spooners"  generally stay loyal( if critical )  and support each other    In a church 

 the hierarchy   is often scrutinised by the members and the various levels of the church hierarchy itself.  

Basically my point is this Humans join churches for the same reasons they join any group, but particularly sporting clubs. 

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11 minutes ago, Mr Walker said:

To have it now is wondrous, and enough, but there is  no harm in hoping for more. 

There is harm in hoping period.  Hope = Fantasy  Fantasy = Not Reality  Not Reality = Harm

Only in the embracing of reality do we find reality.  Anything else is fantasy.  and fantasy is harmful, because it takes us away from reality.  It is all we have, it is all we will ever have.  Not getting that yields one to hope for more.  In hoping for more, one misses the moment at hand.  You cannot have your cake and eat it too.  This moment is the only eternity you will ever have.....

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6 minutes ago, joc said:

I ventured off of the Bliss Train for a breath of fresh air.  I didn't find one, so I will just breath my own bottled fresh air.

No...you are Wrong Sir!  A Christian...as defined by the Church is someone who Believes in God the Father Almighty, Maker of Heaven and Earth and in the rest of the Apostles Creed.  It doesn't matter how you live your life.  It doesn't matter if you follow Christ's examples...all that matters is that you  B E L I E V E!

You can literally follow all of Christ's teachings and live the way he did and you would still not be a Christian.  You must Believe.  

Not you, nor I, nor anyone else gets to define Christianity...only the Church gets to do that!  ...alrighty then

...getting back on the train now, this proved to be just a little too stressful...we are going into the mountains now, cool fresh air, trees, wilderness, reality...

Yes, I said a christian is anyone who follows Christ

No "the church" (whatever you mean by that" doesn't get to define who is Christian or who is not,  otherwise each church would define a Christian as only one of their followers 

You don't have to belong to a church or  accept the apostles creed to be a Christian.

That is only the requirement of certain brands of Christianity 

eg the first followers of Christ were Christians well before the apostle's creed was written.   

It is extremely dangerous to allow any group or organisation to define who you are or are not.

Any church can say you are not one of their followers but no church can say you are not christian, if you follow Christ   

I do agree that following Christ means more than behaviour. It goes to being like Christ in both thought and behaviour 

Neither faith, nor works, alone is enough. IMO both are essential 

 

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3 minutes ago, joc said:

There is harm in hoping period.  Hope = Fantasy  Fantasy = Not Reality  Not Reality = Harm

Only in the embracing of reality do we find reality.  Anything else is fantasy.  and fantasy is harmful, because it takes us away from reality.  It is all we have, it is all we will ever have.  Not getting that yields one to hope for more.  In hoping for more, one misses the moment at hand.  You cannot have your cake and eat it too.  This moment is the only eternity you will ever have.....

......

..............

.....................

..................................

Wow you poor old thing :)  To live without hope in your life 

We hope to be alive tomorrow Some hope for life after death. Neither is certain or assured but t hats where hope comes in It enables us to feel safe strong and comfortable in the now.

We don't know what happens after death for sure, and that uncertainty makes hope valid   You don't know that reality means there is no life after death (even though I  agree thst it is scientifically unlikely)   

Fantasy is not harmful. Indeed it is an evolved safety net of human cognition and psychology which protects us from m psychological harm caused by reality   A  person without fantasy is incomplete, unprotected,  and less likely to survive happily, than one capable of fantasy. 

and no,   there is no reason why you  cant have both.

Embrace the moment in hand while hoping for something in the future We do this all the time with everything.

  Live life to the full, without fear, but hope for another million years of such a life.

That is both normal and healthy.  

 

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24 minutes ago, Golden Duck said:

No.  I consider "a" and "the" convey different meaning.

That's the language used in the OP and the title.

Ok that makes sense 

When i read "the christian church," I understood it to include every form of Christianity. There IS no ONE Christian church   every church is A Christian church.

All Christian churches constitute " THE christian church. "  to differentiate it from  "THE  Islamic church" or, " THE Judaic church" 

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