Jesus said, "This Gospel of the Kingdom must be preached to the nations as a witness..." (Matthew 24:14).
The Gospel that Jesus taught, demonstrated and delivered to the church was more than a message of salvation, but one of restoration of God's Kingdom in the earth. The Kingdom was God's original and ultimate plan for mankind, and constituted the foundation of the message Jesus taught and delivered to the early church, which they in turn also took to the nations of the world. Somehow, the Gospel of the Kingdom has been overlooked in favor of the salvation only message; which is the means by which we obtain the object of the Gospel - The Kingdom!
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New Book explores the necessity of reclaiming the original Gospel that Jesus Himself taught, demonstrated and delivered to the church as a provision to empower it to fulfill its assignment in the earth in advancing the Kingdom of God. This book also explores the problem with teaching and preaching a salvation only Gospel and why it is only a small component of the Full Gospel God intends for the believer to embrace and receive to not only experience victory in the life to come, but victory in the life we have in the here and now!
The best way for us to determine what is the Full Gospel, is not to look around at what is being preached or taught today, nor by asking any of our contemporaries but to turn to the scriptures and examine what Jesus taught and delivered to the church as the gospel. By studying Jesus’ message, and those He discipled, we can gain insight into what was, and was not, considered the Gospel.
It is evident from the condition of the Body of Christ today that something is missing in what we are declaring as the Gospel. Although we claim to have the answer to the world’s woes, statistically we fair no better than the world in our health, finances, marriages and morality. I believe this is in a large part due our over emphasis of one aspect of the gospel, to the exclusion of the rest of it. We have placed an inordinate amount our focus on getting the individual to the introductory salvation experience, but have failed to provide sufficient insight into “that” which they have been saved for. As I have stated throughout this book, there are several reasons for this disparity, both natural and supernatural. However, the task still remains to restore to the church the provision God gave man to overcome in life and advance His Kingdom against the kingdom of darkness. Only the Full Gospel, as delivered by Christ can accomplish this. Anything less is not does not qualify as good news or “The Gospel”.
The Full Gospel
I found it interesting, in my search to gain as many definition of what, commentators and biblical scholars defined as the gospel, that the most accurate generic definition I found came from a secular source. The Merriam Webster online dictionary defines says that the word “gospel” is: (often capitalized) the message concerning Christ, the kingdom of God, and salvation. WOW! Somehow, the world recognizes that “The Gospel” is not complete unless it provides insight and instruction concerning: (1) Christ, (2) the Kingdom of God, and (3) salvation.
The Amplified Bible recognizes that what the original church shared as the Gospel was not confined or defined by the message of salvation only, but also contained the revelation of “Jesus as the Christ” and the “Kingdom of God”. Specifically, the Amplified Bible translates in the book of Acts, “the word of God” is meaning: “concerning the attainment through Christ of eternal salvation in the Kingdom of God" . Just as Merriam Webster’s dictionary included in its definition of the Gospel: (1) Christ, (2) the Kingdom of God and (2) salvation; the Amplified Bible likewise defines the “word of God” that was preached as containing these exact same elements: (1) Jesus as the Christ, (2) the Kingdom of God and (3) salvation”. These extra-biblical resources confirm that the original church understood that the Gospel message was not one dimensional nor confined to the salvation message alone. It was inclusive of the Person, ministry and work of Jesus as the Messiah Christ, the necessity of salvation from the consequence of the fall and curse upon the ground, and the reality and return of God’s Kingdom in the earth! This was the Full Gospel the early church used to turn the known world upside down! (Acts 17:6). Likewise, the church today will again need to embrace the Full Gospel for it to impact our world and advance God’s Kingdom to all nations!