Father Thomas Hopko, of blessed memory, liked to point out that, when we pray the “Our Father” every day, we may not realize that we’re praying for the end of the world – Thy kingdom come.
True but, I think, incomplete. At Christ’s return, the world will end,and be completed in its fullness. But the Scriptures and the holy Fathers abundantly testify that the Kingdom is also now: within us, among us, or in our midst, depending on your favored translation of Luke 17:21.
I was reminded of this most recently while reading a morning prayer of St. Basil the Great. Like most Orthodox prayers, it ends with a Trinitarian affirmation:
…that through us unworthy ones thy most holy Name may be glorified: Of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, one Godhead and Kingdom, to whom is due all glory, honor, and worship, unto the ages. Amen.
There couldn’t be a clearer statement that the eternal and ever-present God is the Kingdom.