Last week we talked about the first of the 6 points about the Kingdom of God: the Kingdom is first about the King. The King has come and inaugurated a new Kingdom reality. This week we will look at point #2.
The Kingdom is where God’s will reigns (righteousness).
The angel told Mary that Jesus would reign over Israel, and His Kingdom would never end (Lk.1:33). Jesus taught His disciples to pray, “Your Kingdom come; Your will be done” (Mt.6:10; Lk.11:12). He declared that only those who do the will of the Father will enter the Kingdom (Mt.7:21). The Kingdom is not a location, it is knowing the King (Mt.7:23) and doing His will. The characteristic of the Kingdom is righteousness, doing the will of the Father.
Jesus is the King, and His teaching must be listened to and understood. The scribe who spoke with Jesus was not far from the Kingdom, because he understood and agreed with the teaching of Jesus on the law (Mk.12:34). When Jesus spoke in parables He asked if the disciples understood (Mt.13:51-52). Those who did not understand were like a seed that was snatched away by the evil one (Mt.13:19). When the disciples realized they did not understand, they made the choice to ask Jesus, who gave them insight into the Kingdom (Mt.13:11; Mk.4:11; Lk.8:10).
People are called to make a choice to follow the King and enter the Kingdom – doing His will with His power. Jesus called for people to repent: to turn from their ways (Mt.4:17; Mk.1:15; cf.Mt.16:24; Mk.8:34; Lk.9:23) and become humble like children – those who become humble like children are the greatest in the Kingdom (Mt.18:1-4), and those who will not become like children will not enter the Kingdom (Mk.10:15; Lk.18:16-17). All are invited, but those who reject His invitation and message will be severely punished (Mt.22:2; cf.Lk.14:15).
Thus, the King and the Kingdom are worth more than anything. Jesus told the people to seek first the Kingdom (Mt.6:33; Lk.6:31). The Kingdom is like a treasure (Mt.13:44), or a pearl that is worth selling everything for (Mt.13:45). The Kingdom is more important than family and the obligation to bury the dead (Lk.9:60; also cp.Mt.12:50; Mk.3:35). There are those who have made themselves eunuchs for the sake of the Kingdom (Mt.19:12), and those who have left family for the sake of the Kingdom will receive a reward (Lk.18:29-30; cf.Mt.19:29; Mk.10:30). Jesus called for hard work and top priority (Lk.9:62). Jesus did not hesitate to be clear about the cost of following Him (see Lk.14:26-28).
The Kingdom of God is where God’s will reigns. Jesus demanded that the righteousness of His followers be greater than the scribes and Pharisees (Mt.5:19f). This is possible because the Kingdom has come. Through the presence of the King, those who know and follow Him can fulfill the will of God (see Mt.5:48), have new relationships with each other and the world, and join in His mission of bringing near the reign of God.
Being a Christian is not just about going to church or having your sins forgiven; it is about life with the King in the Kingdom. This is a new reality, and it includes doing the will of God. Our wills need to be transformed by the Holy Spirit. The more we allow the Spirit to unbend our wills and redirect our choices back to the Father, the more we experience the freedom and joy of the Kingdom.
 The early Christians used Kingdom frequently (NT Wright, Jesus, 215). The Jewish story was the same but its symbols were changed: holiness without deference to Torah, and not food laws but righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit (218).
 This is a possible explanation for Lk.17:20-21 – “the Kingdom is within you.”
 Bruce Chilton and J.I.H. McDonald, Jesus and the Ethics of the Kingdom (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1987) 9. They point to the entire Sermon on the Mount as the ethics of the Kingdom. Further: Jesus is not only the one who brings in the Kingdom, but also the one who shows what it truly means to live as a member of the Kingdom. (13).
 Sobrino writes that the parables are teachings that force you to make a decision – is the Kingdom like this, or not? Jesus the Liberator, 100-102.
 Cf. Mt.4:19; Mk.1:17; also Jn.1:43.
 Scot McKnight, A New Vision for Israel (Grand Rapids: Eardmans, 1999). McKnight lists the categories of vocation, family, possessions, and self as costs involved in following Jesus (pp.176-196).