The 'Lord's Prayer' asks for God's Kingdom to come (i.e.
praying for the return of Christ), whereby God's desires will be done on earth as they are
now done in heaven (Matt. 6:10). We are therefore praying for God's Kingdom to come on the
earth. It is a tragedy that thousands of people thoughtlessly pray these words each day
whilst still believing that God's Kingdom is now already fully established in heaven, and
that the earth will be destroyed.
"Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the
earth" (Matt. 5:5) - not '...for their souls shall go to heaven'. This is alluding to
Psalm 37, the whole of which emphasizes that the final reward of the righteous will be
upon the earth. In the very same location that the wicked had enjoyed their temporary
supremacy, the righteous will be recompensed with eternal life, and possess this same
earth that the wicked once dominated (Ps. 37:34,35). "The meek shall inherit the
earth...Such as be blessed of him shall inherit the earth...The righteous shall inherit
the land, and dwell therein for ever" (Ps. 37:11,22,29). Living in the
earth/promised land for ever means that eternal life in heaven is an impossibility.
"David...is both dead and buried...David is not
ascended into the heavens" (Acts 2:29,34). Instead, Peter explained that his hope was
the resurrection from the dead at Christ's return (Acts 2:22-36).
Earth is the arena of God's operations with mankind:
"Heaven, even the heavens, are the Lord's, but the earth hath He given to the
children of men" (Ps. 115:16).
Rev. 5:9,10 relates a vision of what the righteous will
say when they are accepted at the judgment seat: "(Christ) hath made us unto our God
kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth". This picture of ruling in God's
Kingdom on earth is quite removed from the vague conception that we will enjoy 'bliss'
somewhere in heaven.
The prophecies of Daniel chapters 2 and 7 outline a
succession of political powers, which would finally be superseded by the Kingdom of God at
Christ's return. The dominion of this Kingdom would be "under the whole
heaven", and would fill "the whole earth" (Dan. 7:27; 2:35 cp. v.
44). This everlasting Kingdom "shall be given to the people of the saints of the most
High" (Dan. 7:27); their reward is therefore eternal life in this Kingdom which is to
be located on earth, under the heavens.