present with the community, working to prepare his 'chosen ones' through purification and instruction. The indoctrination into the mysteries of God was therefore a manifestation of the Kingdom's reality. The role of their leadership was understood as clear proof of God's involvement with them in the present. Their 'choosing' was bound up with their soteriology. To use a near parallel, our similar indoctrination as JWs, they were in a 'spiritual paradise' and they already had begun everlasting life because of having the "truth". The Jws however place much more emphasis upon a violent expression of the Kingdom than many Jews and Christians in the past.
Having a belief that the full expression of the Kingdom was imminent makes this bridge much easier, however, the present 'spiritual state' is/was felt to be as real as any future physical expansion of the Kingdom. The Kingdom can/could therefore be viewed as a state of divine enlightenment. This appears to be a strong current in Paul who much emphasized the mysteries of God and having been chosen and acting as agents of the Kingdom. Even Valentinus who followed Paul still voiced belief in some future aspects of the Kingdom, though these were not of greatest concern. Given the strong sense of present in Luke, I suspect the author's emphasis had shifted (or preserved earlier emphasis) toward a realized eschatology.
The fact that a similar outlook existed in Far Eastern religion (which also often has a future eschatology) is not evidence against this conclusion. Perhaps suggesting the contrary, the Jewish mind had centuries of contact with these faiths from the East through the Hittites as well as later missionary activity. Ultimately however even without contact with these other cultures, the human mind works in similar ways given similar pressures.