Undoubtedly you have heard the terms used
in the above caption, and perhaps wondered what they mean. I will endeavour
to give you a simple, straight-forward answer. We shall divide the subject
into its two natural parts, and deal first with the name "Jehovah"
and secondly with His "Theocratic Kingdom."
"Jehovah" is one of the names
of God used in the Bible. It is used of no other person, e.g., Psalm
83:18: "That men may know that thou, whose name alone is JEHOVAH,
art the most high over all the earth." Moses commanded his people,
Israel: "Hear, O Israel: Jehovah our God is one Jehovah: and thou
shalt love Jehovah thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul,
and with all thine might." Deuteronomy 6:4, 5. "Jehovah"
is the name for God used many times in the Old Testament and identified
in the English King James Version by the words LORD and GOD spelled
with capital letters. "The sacred name is derived from the verb
'to be," and so implies that God is eternal and that He is the
Absolute, i.e., the Uncaused One." (The New Compact Bible Dictionary.)
Although the name "Jehovah" is used many times, it is not
the predominant name, nor was it the first name, to be employed in the
Bible. In Genesis one, the name used for God is "Elohim."
"Jehovah" appears for the first time in Genesis 2:4 where
it is seen in conjunction with "Elohim," thus: "... in
the day that Jehovah Elohim made the earth and the heavens." Thus
the two names do not indicate two Gods, but refer to the same Almighty
Being. (See, also, Exodus 6:2, 3.) "Jehovah" is the name indicating
God as Saviour and thus it is associated with His redeeming purposes
As for the term, "Theocratic,"
it is made up of two Greek words: "theos," meaning God and
"kratos," meaning rule, and simply means "a government
in which God Himself is the ruler." When the Lord Jesus Christ
was here, He referred to this theocratic kingdom many times. The herald
of Jesus, John the Baptist, warned the people of his day, and said:
"Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand." This warning
was reiterated by Jesus, and in his sermon on the mount He gave the
principles or, as we would say, the platform of that kingdom. The Lord
Jesus Christ, Himself, is its King by divine appointment. The Psalmist,
David, wrote about it in the second psalm. In verse six he quotes God
as saying: "Yet have I set (anointed) my king upon my holy hill
of Zion. I will declare the decree: the LORD (Jehovah) hath said unto
me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee. Ask of me, and I
shall give thee the heathen for thy possession." When, in the temptation
in the wilderness, Satan offered Jesus the kingdoms of the world, our
Lord rebuked the devil and replied, "Get thee hence, Satan: for
it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt
thou serve," Matthew 4:10. Jesus knew that when his work of kingdoms
was finished, He would receive those kingdoms in His own right as the
prophecy of Revelation 11:15 so plainly sets forth: "And the seventh
angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms
of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of His Christ;
and he shall reign for ever, and ever."
The theocratic kingdom, however, will not
have in it those deteriorating materialistic elements which characterize
now the kingdoms of this world. When Jesus was delivered to the Roman
governor by the Jews, Pilate asked Him, "What hast thou done?"
To this Christ replied, "My kingdom is not of this world: if my
kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should
not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence."
As far as spiritual realities are concerned, the kingdom of God is eternal
and we may enter it now and find operating within us those principles
enunciated by Jesus Christ when He was here among us. Our lives can
be governed by His laws and our personalities display the qualities
of His kingdom, which are "love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness,
goodness, faith, meekness, temperance," against which there is
no law formed.
It is the highest privilege of every human
being to belong to that kingdom. How may we enter? The Lord Jesus Christ
spelled it out in positive terms when He conversed with Nicodemus. He
said to this ruler of the Jews, "Verily, verily, I say unto thee,
except a man be born again (from above), he cannot see the kingdom of
God." John 3:3. Jesus put in another way when He spoke to His disciples.
He said, "Except ye be converted, and become as little children,
ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven," Matthew 18:3. The
theocratic kingdom cannot be entered by good works or by human effort.
It can only be entered by a spiritual birth. Jesus said, "Except
a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom
of God." It is one of the divine imperatives: "Marvel not
that I said unto thee, ye MUST be born again," John 3:5, 7.
You may ask, "This is a mystery. How
can it become a tangible reality to me?" It involves the word of
a King, and your obedience to it. If you will believe the word of God,
and obey it, your entrance into His kingdom will be realized. The apostle
Peter put it this way: "Being born again, not of corruptible seed,
but of incorruptible, by the Word of God, which liveth and abideth forever,"
1 Peter 1:23. What does that word require? Simply this: "That if
thou shalt confess with thy mouth (to God) the Lord Jesus (i.e., Jesus
as your Lord, your Master, your King, as God sent Him to be) and shalt
believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou
shalt be saved," Romans 10:9. Act upon that promise
and be assured of your sonship, for "as many as received him, to
them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe
on his name: which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh,
nor of the will of man, but of God," John 1:12, 13. Lift your heart
in prayer to God now. Make that surrender and let God perform the miracle.
Pastor G.R. Dawe, D.D.
(from the tract JEHOVAH AND HIS