And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent you, and believe the gospel.
The same thought as St. Paul's "fulness of time." (Galatians 4:4; Ephesians 1:10). THE KINGDOM OF GOD and of heaven. These two formulae are used with a slight difference of meaning.
I. "THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN" STANDS OPPOSED TO THE KINGDOMS OF EARTH: the great world empires that lived and ruled by the strength of their armies and that were, in means and ends, in principles and practices, bad. These had grown out of the cruel ambitions, jealousies, and hatreds of men and States; had created war, bloodshed, famine, pestilence, the oppression which crushed the weak, and the tyranny which exalted the strong. But the kingdom from above was the descent of a spiritual power, calm and ubiquitous as the sun to light: plastic, penetrative, pervasive, silently changing from ill to good, from chaos order, both man and the world.
II. "THE KINGDOM OF GOD" HAS ITS OPPOSITE IN THE KINGDOM OF EVIL OR SATAN, the great empire of darkness and anarchy, creative of misery and death to man. It belonged to God, came from Him, existed to promote His ends, to vanquish sin, and to restore on earth an obedience that would make it happy and harmonious as heaven.
(Principal A. M. Fairbairn.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.