n HTS : Theological Studies - as agtergrond van die Christelike : original research

Volume 71, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 0259-9422
  • E-ISSN: 2072-8050



The concept 'kingdom of God' is fundamental to the kerygma on the salvific meaning of Jesus Christ in New Testament times. This article aims to explore the why this concept had been such an important element in the . It argues that the as the primary ideology of the Roman Empire played a significant role. The advocated harmony with the gods, and subsequent heavenly peace and global stability and security in the inhabited world. However, the replaced the as an ideology with the apocalyptic-eschatological concept 'kingdom of God'. According to apocalyptic eschatology, an end to the known world is expected. This end was considered to be a cataclysmic catastrophe awaiting in the future, albeit indeterminate to humankind. On the contrary, the church's proclaimed that the kingdom of God was already present. An element of Jewish apocalyptism, however, remained in the Christian religion - yet adjusted. That is, although the kingdom of God was regarded already present, the idea of a second coming of Christ as Redeemer was upheld. The article demonstrates that the Christian on the realised kingdom of God had its origins in the expectation of an utopia, as envisaged in the as ideology.

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