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The gospel is the message preached by Christ
and by His Church about God's coming Kingdom, the restoration of His government on earth,
and how mankind can enter that Kingdom and government. It includes the message of what
Jesus has done, is doing. and shall doand ultimately is the message of the entire
Old and New Testaments. The primary purpose and commission of the Church is to proclaim
this gospel in all the world as a witness to all nations, and to baptize and teach those
The word "gospel" means simply "good
news." The gospel of Jesus Christ is the good news that He is coming again to
establish His Kingdom on this earth in place of man's governments, and the good news of
how we can become part of that government as sons of God. Hence, the gospel is called
"the gospel of the Kingdom of God" (Mark 1:14), and it is this gospel which
Christ came preaching (same verse). As Jesus went on to say, repentance and belief in the
gospel go hand in hand (Mark 1:15).
In its broadest sense, the gospel includes the whole story of the
Biblethe whole panorama of what God is doing with mankind, especially God's plan of
salvation and forgiveness of sins.
The true gospel is a message of hope given to a world in danger of
destroying itself. Christ's return is the essential component of the biblical message. The
reason for His return is the establishment of His Father's Kingdom on earth, putting an
end to man's unhappy and unsuccessful rule. Hence, Christ's return and coming Kingdom is
the subject of the message that He commissioned His disciples and Church to preach to all
nations until His return.
In John 18:33 Pilate asked Christ, "Are you the King of the
Jews?" Jesus answered, "For this I was born, and for this I have come into the
world, to bear witness to the truth." That is the true gospel. Christ, destined to
rule this earth as the King of God's Kingdom, was to preach this message the good news to
the world. He came to bear witness to the truthto tell the world that God's Kingdom
is going to rule this earth whether mankind believes it or not.
The disciples of Christ had no doubts about the message Christ was
preaching. They understood He was coming again to put an end to this present evil age and
to replace it with the glorious Kingdom of God that Daniel described (Dan. 2:7). The fact
that the apostles asked Christ when His Kingdom would be set up proves that they
knew about that coming Kingdom and had great expectation of it. Christ's answer to their
question was that His Kingdom would not be set up until the gospel of that Kingdom should
be preached to all the world as a witness (Matthew 24:14).
The message of the coming Kingdom of God includes, as an integral part,
the preaching of spiritual salvation for all through Jesus Christthat He died for
our sins (1 Cor. 15:1-3) and that He was resurrected (v. 14). The only person who has
already been saved is Jesus Christ, who was resurrected from the dead and now sits at the
right hand of God the Father. He is the pioneer of our salvation, the one who has gone on
ahead and shown the way (Heb. 2:10). When He returns, at the end of this age, those who
have died in Christ in previous years shall be raised from the dead and given eternal life
to rule with Him. Previous to His return, salvation shall have been offered only to a
minority; at His return, it shall be made available to all.
Thus, the true gospel is God's message to man through Christ about His
coming Kingdom and how humans may enter it. It includes the ultimate purpose of human life
and the plan devised by God to bring it about. This is the true destiny of manto become
members of God's family. This potential of being born of God as His children in
His family is universally applicable to all mankindIt is the potential of men and
women, Jews and Gentiles, all races and peoples, for we are all one in Christ Jesus (Gal.
This gospel was understood in part by the Old Testament patriarchs and
the prophets. It has been preached "since the world began" (Lk. 1:70). Hebrews
11 states that these men died in faithnot yet having received the
"promises" (i.e., of the Kingdom of God and eternal life, v. 13)"but
having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of them, and embraced them, and confessed
that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth" waiting for God's Kingdom. Those
who acknowledge the temporary physical existence of this life "declare plainly that
they seek a country" (i.e., the goal of Gods Kingdom, v. 14).
Likewise, many Old Testament verses show plainly that those with whom
God was dealing then knew of His coming Kingdom.
"For unto us a child is born, and unto us a son is given: and the
government shall be upon His shoulders: ... of the increase of His government and peace
there shall be no end, upon the throne of David and upon his Kingdom, to order it, and to
establish it with judgment and justice from henceforth and even forever" (Isa.
Only God's government and Kingdom could be eternalthe Kingdom
referred to in these verses (see also Dan. 2; Mic. 4; Zech. 14; etc.).
The gospel of the Kingdom of God can be traced from the patriarchs of
Old Testament prophets, through the ministry of John the Baptist, and finally to Jesus
Christ who greatly expanded our understanding of His coming Kingdom and showed how men
might enter it as members of the God family. Christ commissioned the disciples to preach
it in all its important aspects. "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations,
baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching
them to observe all that I have commanded you" (Matthew 28:19-20). "And this gospel
of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then
shall the end come" (Matthew 24:14).
The early disciples followed Christ's command to preach this gospel of
the kingdom as a witness to all nations. The Church of God also follows this command and
views as the primary reason for its existence the commission to preach the gospel of the
kingdom to all nations in accordance with Jesus Christ's instructions. The church today
strives to continue fulfilling that commission with ever-increasing effectiveness,
following in the tradition of Elijah the prophet and John the Baptist (Mal. 4:5-6), by
preparing the way for Christ's return through the announcement of that gospel
This publication is intended to be
used as a personal study tool. Please know it is not wise to take any man's word
for anything, so prove all things for yourself from the pages of your own Bible.
The Garner Ted Armstrong Evangelistic Association
P.O. Box 747
Flint, TX 75762
Phone: (903) 561-7070 • Fax: (903) 561-4141
More FREE literature is available at our Internet Web Site:
The activities of the Garner Ted Armstrong
Evangelistic Association are paid for by tithes, offerings and donations
freely given by Christians and co-workers who are dedicated to preaching the
gospel according to Jesus Christ.