LUKE 17:20; NOT BY OBSERVATION
Those who do not believe in a future literal reign of Christ on earth quote Luke 17:20 as a proof text.
Luke 17:20 And when he was demanded of the Pharisees, when the kingdom of God should come (erchetai) he answered them and said, The kingdom of God cometh (erchetai) not with observation.
The Pharisees assumed that the real Messiah would initially come like most kings with a sudden highly visible announcement of majesty, power, splendor and outward physical conquest.
Jesus was not saying that the kingdom of God would not be a literal physical kingdom on earth. Such would contradict all the prophets which He had previously inspired. He simply denied that the kingdom would come in the manner which the Pharisees expected. Jesus was saying that its initial “coming” would not be observable because the initial coming of God’s kingdom is an inner change of the heart (17:21). The first disciples’ desire to see just one of the days of the Messiah would end in disappointment because Israel had rejected its Messiah and the visible coming of His kingdom would be long delayed (17:22).
Luke 17:24 For as the lightning, that lighteneth out of the one part under heaven, shineth unto the other part under heaven; so shall also the Son of man be in his day.
When some shall say “Here or there is the kingdom” do not believe them (17:23). When the kingdom does arrive visibly, you will know it because it will be as visible as lightning (17:24).