And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come, he answered them and said, The kingdo of God cometh not withobservation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.
Deep insid the spirit of every huLuke 17:20-21man being, there is a seed.
It's not merely a seed of greatness to accomplish something important in life. It's much bigger than that. In fact, it has very little to do the lives of individual believers. This seed is the kingdom of God.
God could have put the Kingdom anywhere, but He decided to house it within the spirit of every human being. This is what he meant by, "behold [with spiritual eyes, since it can't be seen in the natural], the Kingdom of God is within you."
The Kingdom of God is within your spirit. It is a place that can be reached by reaching within your spirit. Furthermore, the Bible says that the Kingdom has gates that open and shut.
Matthew 23:13 But woe unto you, scribes and pharisees, hypocrites! For ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.
In this scripture, it mentions that the kingdom's entrance can be shut. You can picture the Kingdom as a city with an entrance. It is open to some and closed to others. Who opens the gates? Who shuts the gates? A deeper search into scripture gives us clues.
The Greek word for "gates" is "to close and lock."
The word "gates" here is not a noun but a verb. It denotes action. Someone is literally closing and locking an entrance to the heaven. That someone is a gatekeeper.
Job 41 speaks of a creature God calls Leviathan. Many bible scholars have debates about what kind of animal he is. Was God describing a dinosaur? A crocodile? Job 33:34 gives us a clue.
Job 33:34 Nothing on earth is its equal - a creature without fear. It looks down on all that are haughty, it is king over all that are proud.
If you look from a spiritual perspective, it looks as if Leviathan is a spiritual creature and not a natural phenomenon. How can a brute beast be king over all that are proud? The proud men and women of the earth? It is a spiritual creature indeed. He is the gatekeeper within each human being that guards the gates to the Kingdom of God. He is the one who opens and shuts the kingdom.
Matthew 11:12 The kingdom of heaven suffereth violence and the violent take it by force.
To gain entrance to the Kingdom of heaven (that's within you), you have to take it by force in a violent fashion. Who are we fighting against? Who must we overcome first? Leviathan, the gatekeeper. He is king over all that are proud. He is the nature of the serpent!
"Leviathan" in Hebrew means "the piercing serpent."
Genesis 3;1-5 Now the serpent was more subtile than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?
And the woman said unto the serpent, we may eat of the fruit of the trees of the gardden: but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
And the serpent said unto the woman, ye shall not surely die: for God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
This is the first introduction of Leviathan in the Bible. He is more subtle [cunning, crafty, and smooth] than any beast of the field. In Genesis 3 Leviathan is deceptively planning the demise of humanity - the fall of Adam - the end of Adam and Eve's intimate relationship with God.
What God sees as the crafty work of Leviathan, we view as things that comfort, soothe, and appease my flesh.
When Eve heard the serpent's words, immediately she cooperated. She did what God clearly forbade. She put up no fight. The serpent's words struck a resounding gong with something deep within her. She became intrinsically motivated.
What was that "something"? What was that "something" in Eve that gave total agreement to the Serpent/Leviathan?
It is the self-nature, or what the bible calls "the flesh." We call it "me, myself, and I."
1 corinthians 15:50 Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither does corruption inherit incorruption.
The flesh cannot inherit, or possess, the kingdom of God. Flesh is corrupted by the Leviathan, or Serpent, nature.
God is clearly not pleased with the flesh.
Romans 8:8 So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.
Romans 8:13 For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body [or flesh], ye shall live.
Both the flesh and the spirit of God dwells within you. Leviathan is king over your flesh. When you follow the ways of your flesh, you walk through life outside the gates of the Kingdom never capable of entering it. It is only by mortifying your flesh (through the spirit) that "ye shall live.."
Ye shall breathe that Kingdom air and walk within the streets of the Kingdom...and live the Kingdom life - life in the Spirit.
Two natures beat within my breast; one is foul, the other blest;
The one I love, the one I hate; the one I feed will dominate.