The True Gospel Message
The gospel is the message of hope to all who accept Christ as their Lord and Saviour, since this is the only way we can receive forgiveness, purpose and eternal life. While this is surely 'good news', this is only part of the true gospel message because the Kingdom of God is also of great importance and relevance. For while the Gospel of Personal Salvation offers hope to the individual, the gospel of the Kingdom of God offers hope to Israel (not to be confused with the modern day 'Jews' or Israeli state today) and eventually all other nations. In fact it is mentioned, taught and prophesied throughout the Old and New Testament. Christ Himself spent most of His ministry on earth preaching the ‘Gospel of the Kingdom of God’, with this phrase occurring 103 times in the gospels alone. Despite this, the Kingdom of God remains one of the most misunderstood and misapplied subjects in the bible.
The confusion and misunderstanding seems to arise as a result of many churches today failing to understand the full gospel, which includes both the gospel of the Kingdom of God and the gospel of Personal Salvation. Both essential to God’s plan of redemption and salvation of mankind.
The Full Gospel Outlines God’s Plan and Purpose For Us
As a result of this lack of understanding, many of us are failing to appreciate the purpose for which God has called us (what He wants us to do), our goal in life, our responsibility to one another and the prize which is set before us, which we are encouraged to strive for. Most of us having become Christians are led to believe that since we have already received the ‘grand prize’ of eternal life and ‘access’ into heaven, what we do in life no longer really matters since we are all going to the same place and getting the same reward anyway. This creates confusion and we end up drifting through life blinded to our real purpose and reasons for it as we seek some meaning in our lives other ways.
If you have ever found yourself asking the question “what does God want me to do?”, then I would encourage you to change your question to one which has a readily available answer like “what is God doing?”, or “what is God’s plan and purpose?” For these answers can be found in His Word and through an understanding of the full gospel message. Once we know what God’s plan and purpose is and what He is doing to achieve these, we can simply follow Him, using our circumstance, skills, knowledge and gifts to great effect and purpose. Then we will understand why it is so important to believe Him and obey His commands as we demonstrate love for one another. Learning His ways now, so we can be useful to Him. Not only now, but after He comes in His Kingdom, which is to be established on this earth, where He will rule over Israel and eventually all nations and people (Isa 2:2-5; Mic 4:1-5; Zech 14).
For there will be much work to be done after He comes, as we work with Him to restore this earth back to how it was originally intended to be and teach the nations and people of this world His Ways that they might be blessed also. It is important to understand the purpose for our preparation now so we can truly overcome this world (this includes our own sinful nature) and learn to obey Him. The character and obedience we develop now will be of great value in His Kingdom.
The Gospel of the Kingdom of God
The Gospel of the Kingdom of God is both national and international in scope and details the fulfillment of the promises made concerning the nation and people of Israel. Their later redemption and restoration made possible through Christ’s death and resurrection, enabling God to bring them back, as a nation into covenant relationship with Him that they might fulfill their responsibilities in later days. The return of Christ to earth, to rule over the House of Jacob (Israel) and eventually all nations and kingdoms of the world. This being achieved as Israel finally takes up its responsibility and becomes the model nation and therefore a blessing to all families and nations on earth. A servant people, demonstrating God's love to all. Other nations and races will be invited to study God’s Laws in operation and to observe the benefits which follow, in order they might too adopt the same laws and thereby enjoy the same benefits and blessings and become part of the Kingdom of God also (Isa 2:2-5; Mic 4:1-5; Zech 14:16-19). Thus fulfilling the promise that the kingdoms of this world will become the kingdom of our Lord.
The Gospel of Personal Salvation
The gospel of Personal Salvation is the message of hope to all who will accept Christ as their Lord and Saviour, repenting and following Him (obeying His commandments). For only those who accept Christ as King and obey His Laws will receive forgiveness, purpose, eternal life and entry into His Kingdom (Kingdom of God). This salvation being from God alone, by grace alone, through faith alone, in Jesus alone. This salvation though Jesus Christ is available to all, both Israelite and Gentile.
It’s a shame that for the most part, the modern church, whether Pentecostal, Charismatic or mainstream has lost sight of the Gospel of the Kingdom and only preaches the Gospel of Personal Salvation (though some have indeed lost both). In truth, it is not enough to only believe in Christ, for we must also believe His Word and follow it too.
Our loving God has made everything perfectly and wonderfully for a purpose. A God who knows us better than we know ourselves and has our best interests in mind at all times. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him, shall not perish, but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16) “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you” (Jer 29:11- 14)
Call upon the Lord while there is still time and He will answer.
If you desire to know more about the Kingdom of God, then please read the section on 'Who and Where is Israel Today' which answers these important questions. The answers will surprise you!