As God made man in three dimensions - spirit, soul and body - so has He designed the Kingdom of God. After Yeshua (Jesus) was raised from the dead, He spent forty days with His disciples in an intensive teaching program, "speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God (Acts 1:3)." In the discussion that follows, we see the three dimensions, like three photographs, laid one over the other in a "triple-exposure" montage. To understand the kingdom we must see how these three fit together into an integral whole.
The Temple building had a symbolic meaning concerning our destiny to become the dwelling place of God. Ultimately God expresses and manifests Himself through inhabiting His people. It is like a man who built a house for himself and then moved in to dwell there. Any understanding of the kingdom of God without the Spirit of God living inside us, would miss the central aspect of the kingdom. The kingdom of God is essentially God dwelling inside the human race. Anywhere people are filled with the Spirit of God, the kingdom of God exists. The word for "tabernacle" in Hebrew, mishkan, means dwelling place. In modern Hebrew, the words for neighborhood, house mortgage and housing project, all come from the same root.
Racism is inherently contradictory to the purpose of the kingdom of God. Racial reconciliation (unity with diversity) is an expression and realization of God's dream. For this reason, God chose the rainbow to be the sign of His covenant with Noah (Genesis 9:16). The international community of faith (the true "Church") is by its very nature just that: international. God does not want every nation to be the same; He wants to remove the strife between us. The rainbow has many different colors that are blended together in a beautiful harmony. That is the artistry of God. God works not with paint and canvas, but with the hearts of human beings. This international harmony is an esssential part of the kingdom of God.
The disciples had in mind the prophecies given to David - that his kingdom would last forever and eventually encompass the entire world (II Samuel 7:14, Isaiah 9:7; 11:1). The indwelling of God's Spirit and the multinational harmony of the kingdom of God eventually have to find their expression in a real life human society in which God is the architect and governor (Hebrews 11:10). This third aspect is the earthly fulfillment of the kingdom. It will take place at a certain point of time and space, where the history of man will intersect with the promises of God. It has not yet been fulfilled, but it is in the process of development.
The word "kingdom" means a government led by a king. God's kingdom has a king, who is Yeshua. It exists in our heart, but it will also come to pass as a perfect world, a righteous society, an international empire with Jerusalem as its capital and Yeshua as its monarch. Yeshua did not come to do away with the kingdom of David, but to enlarge and expand its dimensions. He added to David's kingdom all the nations of the world (Isaiah 49:6). He added to David's kingdom eternal life and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit (Isaiah 55:3). David's kingdom is one of the three dimensions of the kingdom of God.
God's Kingdom on Earth
When we integrate these three dimensions - the Dwelling Place, the Rainbow, and the kingdom of David - we can see the full picture of the kingdom of God. To remove any one of these is to eliminate the spirit or soul or body of the kingdom. All three have validity. They all come into their New Covenant fulfillment through Yeshua the Messiah. First comes the baptism of the Holy Spirit, then world evangelism, and finally, kingdom restoration in Israel. Thank God, the first seeds of revival in Israel are already beginning to take place. (Romans 11:26). Some people have difficulty understanding that the kingdom of God has an earthly fulfillment. Yet the Lord's prayer states that the kingdom is for God's will to be done on earth, in the same way that it is done in heaven (Matthew 6:11). The plan of God has always been, from before the foundation of the world, to unite all that is in heaven and earth (Ephesians 1:10). At the time of the resurrection, not only will human beings receive new bodies, planet earth will also be renewed: "The creation itself will also be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God (Romans 8:21)."
What an encouraging promise - animals and plants, rocks and streams will also be redeemed. Heaven and earth will be joined; God will live among men; Eden will be restored; and everything will be perfect.