I had a question regarding the kingdom of God. From my understanding, the kingdom of God is another term for the church. However, after reading the gospel accounts, I found a problem with Luke 21:31. "So you also, when you see these things happening, know that the kingdom of God is near." My understanding of this passage is that Jesus is referring to the destruction of Jerusalem. But I don't understand how he said "know that the kingdom of God is near" when by that time, the church should have been established already by that point of time. I hope you can offer some insight on this or maybe I'm overlook something.
Thank you for your time and service.
"Then He told them a parable: "Behold the fig tree and all the trees; as soon as they put forth leaves, you see it and know for yourselves that summer is now near. So you also, when you see these things happening, recognize that the kingdom of God is near. Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all things take place" (Luke 21:29-32).
I believe Jesus is telling the Jews that in seeing all the various signs leading up to the destruction of Jerusalem they were also seeing evidence that the kingdom they had long awaited for was near to them and not something in the distant future. In this case, "near" isn't even referring to the near future, but "near" in the sense that it was nearby, if they would bother to look.