There Is Only One Gospel. The Apostle Paul said: “Though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so we say again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed” (Gal. 1:8,9). As if to emphasize the fact that there is only one gospel, the Apostle repeated the same wording twice.
The Gospel Was Preached to Abraham. “The scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed” (Gal. 3:8).
It is the Gospel of the Kingdom of God. “Jesus went about all of Galilee, preaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people”
Belief in the Gospel of the Kingdom of God is Necessary to Salvation. “I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ; for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek”
With these four facts in mind, let us proceed to a detailed study of the gospel of the Kingdom of God.
Though the gospel of the Kingdom was preached to Abraham, it did not take definite shape until the time of the covenant that God made with David. David offered to build a house for God; but God spoke to him through the prophet Nathan, forbidding him. Instead, God made the following promise to David: “When thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build an house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom for ever.”
(2 Sam. 7:12,13). That promise that was made to David is repeated many times in the scriptures, and confirmed to Solomon.
The promise of the everlasting nature of David’s kingdom and of his family is repeated so many times in the prophecies that it would be utterly impossible to cite them all in this short space. Some of the most important ones must suffice:
“Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder; and his name shall be called, Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase in his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of Yahweh of hosts will perform this”
This, and other like passages show that Christ is the seed that was promised to David, and that he should rule on the throne of David, and there is to be no end to his Kingdom.
“Behold, the days come, saith Yahweh, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth. In his days Judah shall be saved and Israel shall dwell safely; and this is his name whereby he shall be called, YAHWEH OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS” (Jer. 23:5,6).
The “weeping prophet” paints anything but a picture of gloom in the foregoing passage. There he speaks definitely of the same Kingdom over which Christ shall reign. “In those days, and at that time, will I cause a branch of righteousness to grow up unto David; and he shall execute judgment and righteousness in the land…For thus saith Yahweh; David shall never want a man to sit upon the throne of the house of Israel…” (Jer. 33:15,17).
Even the Pharisees recognized that the Christ would come in the family of David: “While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them saying, What think ye of Christ? Whose son is he? They say unto him, The son of David” (Matt. 22:41,42).
Any kingdom has essential parts:
1)- It has land: “Yahweh shall inherit Judah his portion in the holy land, and shall choose Jerusalem again” (Zechariah 2:12). The Psalmist, in speaking about Christ’s Kingdom says: “He shall have dominion also from sea to sea, and from the river unto the ends of the earth” (Psalm 72:8)
2)- It has people: “The kingdom and the dominion, and the greatness of the kingdom under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the saints of the most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and dominions shall serve and obey him” (Daniel 7:27).
Simeon said, when he had the baby Jesus in his arms in the temple: “Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace according to thy word; for mine eyes have seen thy salvation, which thou hast prepared before the face of all people: a light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel” (Luke 2:29-32).
“The seventh angel sounded ; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.”
This passage gives not only the people but the extent of the Kingdom and its duration – forever.
3)- It has a King and other rulers: “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout O daughter of Jerusalem; behold the king cometh unto thee; he is just, and having salvation; lowly and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foul of an ass” (Zechariah 9:9).
To Mary, the mother of Jesus, the angel of the annunciation said: “He shall be great, and shall be called
the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David; and he shall reign over the house of Jacob forever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end” (Luke 1:32,33).
The passage quoted before from Daniel says that the saints will be rulers with Jesus in his Kingdom. The Apostle Paul also said: “The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God….. and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we maybe also glorified together”
From the foregoing, it is evident that: the Kingdom of God is going to be on the earth, with its capital in Jerusalem; Christ is going to be the King; the people of his church are going to be joint-heirs with him; the Kingdom will last forever.
How do we gain entrance into this Kingdom? By baptism into the name of Christ (Gal. 3:27-29); and thereafter, living the kind of life set forth in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew Chapters 5, 6 and 7). Paul and Peter and the other New Testament writers also set forth the same requirements.
When shall the Kingdom of God be? That answer is left indefinite in the Scriptures: “When they therefore were come together, they asked of him saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore the kingdom to Israel? And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in His own power” (Acts 1:6,7)
That was the last message Jesus gave to his followers before he ascended to heaven. But we do have many statements telling of the kind of things that will exist before the coming of the Kingdom of God. Jesus said that before he would come, the confusion and strife in this world would come to a climax. (Matt. 24 and 25). Paul also spoke of the state of affairs in the world at that time when writing to Timothy. (2 Timothy 3:1ff.) Wars are growing worse and more devastating with each new one. Mankind’s economic, social and moral life is degenerating. Man does not know how to govern himself. World conditions socially and environmentally are becoming worse. Only after the establishment of God’s Kingdom will the earth be returned to the way it was at creation.
When Jesus returns as the King and ruler of the earth:
There shall be eternal peace (Isaiah 11:35; Psalm 35:72, and numerous others passages; there shall be no more sickness or death (Isaiah 33:24; 1 Corinthians 15:24-26); there shall be justice, and equity for the poor (Psalm 72; Isaiah 11, and many others). “He shall judge thy people with righteousness, and thy poor with judgment…. He shall judge the poor of the people, he shall save the children of the needy, and shall break in pieces the oppressor….In his days shall the righteous flourish; and abundance of peace so long as the moon endureth….For he shall deliver the needy when he crieth; the poor also, and him that hath no helper” (Psalm 72)