When John the Baptist came on the scene, he preached that the kingdom was at hand (Matt. 3:2). Jesus told the Pharisees that if He casted out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom had come upon them (Matt. 12:28). I believe that is what John the Baptist meant when he said that the kingdom was "at hand." It was powerfully manifested through the personal ministry of Christ. If we define the kingdom strictly in terms of a Jewish theocracy, in what sense could the kingdom have come upon those to whom Jesus preached?