The Disciples Proclaimed the Kingdom
So why do we hear so little about the Kingdom of God—as proclaimed in the Bible—in modern Christianity?
The disciples of Jesus obviously understood His message. References to the Kingdom of God—or the King...dom of Heaven, as the Gospel of Matthew usually refers to it—appear many times in their writings. Matthew alone contains 37 references. Together the four Gospels specifically mention God's Kingdom 86 times in addition to other, oblique, references to it. The remainder of the New Testament, from Acts through Revelation, mentions God's Kingdom many times.
The disciples recognized with crystal clarity that, when Jesus spoke of the Kingdom of God, He spoke in terms of a real government—a structured, organized entity with the very authority of God behind it. Certain rulers who heard Christ's message recognized the political implications and viewed His words as a threat to their own power. This became a factor in Christ's eventual crucifixion (Luke 23:2; John 19:12).
To Jesus and His disciples, the term Kingdom of God meant a government that would be established on earth. They anticipated that its arrival would amount to nothing less than a sweeping, overwhelming change in the world order.
In teaching the message of this Kingdom, Jesus was simply extending the central theme of the Old Testament. The Hebrew prophets had earlier stressed the reality of this Kingdom. Old Testament and New Testament thus stand together as the two acts of a single drama" (The Kingdom of God.