“The Kingdom of Heaven Is at Hand”
by Clarence W. Chadwick
It’s been an accepted theory that the kingdom of heaven is a place, and that no one can ever enter this sacred domain until after what is called death. Yet, John the Baptist said that the kingdom of heaven was “at hand.” He knew that heaven meant a state of purified consciousness, and warned men to turn from their sinful thoughts and acts to find this kingdom now, in this present world.
And what was Jesus’ mission but to reveal to mankind the kingdom of heaven on earth? What was the need of his coming to earth if death is the way to paradise? Why did he urge men to repent “and believe the gospel,” and instruct his disciples to “go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand,” unless he meant just what he said? He healed the lame, the halt, the sick, and the blind to prove to humanity what the kingdom of heaven meant.
Living the teachings of Christian Science is the kingdom of heaven; and for this reason, it demands the forsaking and overcoming of all evil. It does not make the mistake of promising us immunity from pain and disease when we are dealing dishonestly in the business world. We must think right and do right in every walk of life if we would learn the meaning of heaven or harmony and enjoy its healing blessings. People are sometimes more than willing to part with some of their errors, while they refuse to give up others that promise them a certain amount of false pleasure. If we would ever know God aright, and experience His kingdom on earth, we must learn to be honest with ourselves, and strive to forsake the whole of evil instead of just a part.
The kingdom of heaven is already complete. Nothing can be taken from it nor added to it. As the Bible so beautifully states, “Every good gift and ever perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.”
Jesus’ declaration, “The kingdom of God is within you,” clearly shows the ability to realize and experience it in this present world. John’s vision of a new heaven and new earth was his recognition of heaven within; and this vision is ours the moment we begin to prove that evil has neither intelligence, power, nor authority. This proof can come only as we take a firm stand against all belief in evil, and resolve to think and declare only the allness of good, God.
God’s thought, reflected by man, will and does solve every life-problem. What a different world this would be if we would all begin today to think, study, and discuss only such subjects as make for health, peace, and happiness. This would be the “kingdom of heaven at hand”!