Message and Hope of the Gospel

Sunburst Ocean - Photo by Will van Wingerden on Unsplash
After his resurrection, Jesus declared to his disciples, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me; therefore, go and make disciples of all nations.” During his ministry, they were not to preach to the Gentiles or the Samaritans, though he did so on several occasions in anticipation of the opening of the gospel to the “nations.” But initially, they were to proclaim the good news of the Kingdom only to the “lost sheep of Israel” 
- [Photo by Will van Wingerden on Unsplash].

Once Jesus was elevated to become Lord over all things, his followers were tasked with bringing the “good news of the Kingdom of God” to all the nations - To Jews and Gentiles alike.  Just before he ascended to heaven, he commanded his disciples to tarry in Jerusalem until they “received power when the Holy Spirit came upon them.”  Thereafter, they would be “his witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria and to the uttermost part of the earth” - (Acts 1:7-9).

The Apostle Paul wrote a lengthy letter to the churches in Rome, congregations experiencing tensions between Jewish and Gentile members.  In it, he described the “righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe, for there is no distinction.”

Sin is the Great Leveler that puts every man and woman in the same desperate place - Both Jew and Gentile. Because “God is one” and the Creator of all men, He offers salvation to all regardless of anyone’s ethnicity, and all on the same basis:
  • (Romans 3:22-30) – “A righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ to all that have faith; FOR THERE IS NO DISTINCTION, for all have sinned and lack the glory of God; being declared righteous freely by his grace. through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus…Where, then, is the boasting! It is excluded. Through what kind of law? Of works? Nay, but through a law of faith. For we reckon that a man is to be declared righteous by faith apart from works of law. Or is God the God of Jews only, and not of the Gentiles also? Yea! of the Gentiles also, If, at all events, God is one, who will declare righteous the circumcision by faith, and the uncircumcision through their faith.
Now, in Christ, all men may receive right-standing before God on the same basis - whether Jew or Gentile - from the faith of Jesus.  Therefore, there is no basis for human boasting or self-confidence, “since all have sinned and lack the glory of God.”

Paul appealed to his monotheistic faith in support of his proposition.  “Is he not the God of Gentiles also? Yes, of Gentiles also since God is one and will justify the circumcised from faith and the uncircumcised through faith.” No individual is more advantaged or disadvantaged because of his or her ethnicity:
  • But now do you also put them all away: anger, wrath, malice, railing, shameful speaking out of your mouth: lie not one to another; seeing that you have put off the old man with his doings, and have put on the new man that is being renewed unto knowledge after the image of him that created him: where there cannot be Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, bondman, freeman; but Christ is all and in all.” – (Colossians 3:9-11).
God is creating a new humanity in Christ, one drawn from every nation and culture, and shaping it into the image of His Son. The traditional distinctions of race, gender, social and economic status are now inappropriate. The announcement of this glorious salvation is one Message intended for all men and women. The Gospel of Jesus is a message that transcends all such man-made walls.

The scriptures declare that all believers are the “sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female:  for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's seed, heirs according to promise” - (Galatians 3:28).

The primary task of the Church is to proclaim this good news in every inhabited corner of the earth. The completion of this mission is necessary before the return of Jesus in glory.  National borders, cultural imperatives, and ethnic barriers will not prevent the proclamation of the Kingdom from reaching its consummation - (Matthew 24:14).

A day is coming when the destructive works of the Devil will vanish from the earth.  Sin, and the “last enemy, Death will be eliminated forever.  This grand victory will coincide with the “arrival” of Jesus in majesty and power at the “end of the age.” At that time, he will resurrect the righteous dead, vanquish “Death,” reward his faithful followers, and usher in the consummated Kingdom of God - (1 Corinthians 15:20-28).

Thereafter, God’s reign will prevail unhindered throughout the Universe.  In the interim, His sons and daughters are called to proclaim this Good News to any and all men who will hear it and respond in faith.


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