The Kingdom and the Holy Spirit

Below is a response from Dr. Don Kouri to a discussion topic in the Forum On Kingdom Initiation for my AD250 The Non-Negotiables of Apostolic Christianity, Lesson 2. It is a very insight response regarding Messiah’s Kingdom and the Holy Spirit. Dr. Kouri’s discussion of Kingdom Initiation demonstrates both the depth and relevance of the apostolic and prophetic curriculum of the Apostles Theological Seminary.

Dr. Kouri is the head of the Graduate Studies in Phyical Chemistry at the University of Houston in Houston, Texas and part of the Adjunct Faculty of the Apostles Theological Seminary.


AD250 is being offered as a free introductory course for any one who goes online and registers a user name and password at www.apostlestheologicalseminary.org.

Re: The AD250Kingdom and The Holy Spirit
by Donald Kouri - Friday, May 4 2007, 04:19 PM

I have some thoughts on this (the relationship between Messiah’s Kingdom and the Age of the Spirit), but they are not necessarily direct answers to the questions raised. I hope that is OK.

First, I think it is useful to think about the character and origin of kingdoms in human history. Ultimately, they are based on the family or clan concept.

In the Genesis account of creation, God created man in His own image. The Hebrew word used is “tzelem” (which is the basis of the modern Hebrew word for a photograph). It says that this image requires male and female, since it states “God created man in His own image, male and female created He them”. They are commanded to populate the earth, that is, produce a family or clan. I believe this presages the Triune God of Father, Son and Holy Spirit. It is no accident that the Holy Spirit is the source of the new birth, and the birth of Jesus resulted from the over shadowing of Mary by the Holy Spirit. Unfortunately, this clan relationship is disrupted by sin before it can really get started and the first family is cast out of the Garden (from the Presence) and is disrupted by disunity. The result is the first murder, a consequence of the lie of Satan. ( Indeed, it is very interesting to examine the lie that was swallowed. Basically, the serpent says that God hasn’t really made man in His own image but rather has held back something. Thus, the lie is that Adam and Eve aren’t yet truly in God’s image and God is stingy.) Of course, God made man as much in His image as was possible in the circumstances. The entire salvation saga from that point on is God working to not just restore the marred creation but to go beyond it. The new man in the Kingdom will be in the image of the Son of God!

The crucial importance of family and clan is further stressed by the Bible’s preoccupation with detailed geneologies. Genesis is full of them, as are many other books of the Bible. Geneologies are particularly stressed in the history of Israel and in 2 of the gospels.  With Abraham, the Bible becomes much more focussed on a specific clan. It is a family that owes its existence to 2 things. The action of God in power (enabling Abraham and Sarah to have a son in their old age) and to the faith of Abraham (in leaving from his own clan and family and in continuing to have sexual relations with Sarah even though both were old). It is significant that the clan symbol is ordered to be circumcision. The connection to the ability to procreate is completely intentional (and I think another example of God’s sense of humor). It is also notable that it is the mother that is crucial in creating the clan. It is through Sarah, not Hagar, that the clan is produced. Paul takes Hagar later to symbolize the law; that is man trying to save himself through his own power. Again, the entry into the clan can only come about through the Holy Spirit.

The clan ultimately connects to a Kingdom as society develops. As clans grew, they ultimately became city states and then kingdoms, but typically it was the clan head who was king. The first king of Israel is Saul. Saul is a “type” of the nation of Israel that rejected the Messiah, King Jesus. His downfall is disobedience and the Spirit departs from him. This is like the vacating of the Temple by the Shekinah described by Ezekiel and which also occurred in 70 AD with the destruction of the 2nd Temple. It is important to note that Saul’s general (commander in chief) of the army of Israel is his uncle, Abner. Later, David’s main general is Joab, the son of Zeruiah, David’s sister and therefore David’s nephew). His other nephews, Abishai and Asahel (brothers of Joab) are members of David’s “might men”. These can be thought of as David’s apostles. It is also ironic to note that the man betrayed by David, Uriah the Hittite, was also one of his might men!

David is promised an everlasting Kingdom, and furthermore, he is promised that his descendant will never have the Holy Spirit withdrawn from Him.  The prophet, Jeremiah, makes a tremendously important revelation regarding the clan and how one gets admitted into it (and thereby into the Kingdom). He states that clan membership will result from circumcision of the heart. This requires a blade sharper than any 2 edged sword, which can separate between the marrow and other tissue. That is, it is the work of the Holy Spirit. Jesus refers to this heart circumcision as being “born again”. Thus, the true clan of God, and the members of His Kingdom are born into it by the power of the Holy Spirit, Who also birthed the Lord Jesus Christ through Mary. Again, lets recall Jesus’ conversation with Nicodemus. Nicodemus was totally shocked when Jesus told him (in essence), being born a Jew does NOT admit one into the Kingdom. Nick couldn’t believe his ears! Jesus then tells the woman at the well in Samaria that true worshipers must worship in Spirit. It must come through entrance into the Kingdom, which comes ONLY through membership in the clan. This comes ONLY through the new birth.

This view is echoed by the Apostle Paul. In Romans, he states that anyone not having the Spirit is not part of the Kingdom and family of God. This is why the Apostles questioned people in Acts as to whether they had received the Spirit. Without the Spirit, it is impossible to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Indeed, when the Bible speaks of the “fruit of the Holy Spirit”, it really means the manifestation of the new birth. It is nothing less than the “family resemblence” or the personality of Jesus (the Head of the clan of God) that results from the in dwelling of the Holy Spirit. It is fascinating that the thing that convinced Peter and the Jewish Christians in Jerusalem that the Gospel was also open to the gentiles was the fact that Cornelius received the gift of the Holy Spirit (the gift of entrance into the Kingdom).

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