"I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God" (Acts 20:27). "But there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. … If any man ['or an angel from heaven'—v. 8] preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed" (Gal. 1:7-9).
The Greek word euaggellion, translated "gospel," means good tidings, good news, a good message. The Bible speaks of it as "the gospel of God," "the gospel of Christ," "the gospel of the kingdom," and frequently just "the gospel."
But many who preach the Gospel do not understand it very fully; and, consequently, some pervert it, whether wittingly or unwittingly. Many who profess to believe and teach the Gospel know little of the fullness of this glorious message. They are likely to be misled or are already deceived into accepting and believing a so-called Gospel that is much more limited and quite different than the true Good Tidings given by Divine inspiration in God's Holy Word.
There was much excuse for ignorance and misinformation in our forefathers of the Dark Ages, when the Bible was a "chained book"; but with Bibles in many translations and Bible helps readily available in our day of enlightenment (Dan. 12:4), there is little excuse for ignorance and perverted views in anyone on this important subject; and with the anathema of the Apostle Paul ringing in our ears (Gal. 1:6-9), we see how important it is that we learn and preach only the true Gospel, the full Gospel, the true, genuine Good News of God's holy Word—"the gospel of the grace of God" (Acts 20:24), "the fulness of the blessing of the gospel of Christ" (Rom. 15:29), "the gospel of the kingdom" (Matt. 4:23).
Many who claim to preach the full Gospel preach instead a narrow and limited Gospel, interspersed with the errors of the Dark Ages, in which the love of God is made too narrow. As the poet has said,
But men make his love too narrow
By false limits of their own,
And they magnify his vengeance
With a zeal he will not own.
Search the Scriptures, search and see,
God's grand law of equity.
There are a number of Bible texts which help us to see clearly exactly what is the glorious Gospel message as given in the Bible, the only sure foundation for our faith (1 Cor. 2:5; 2 Tim. 3:16, 17; 2 Pet. 1:19). Such texts seem to more or less summarize the Gospel message, to give it briefly, concisely, tersely, "in a nutshell." We will consider here some of these. We have chosen six outstanding Bible texts and will treat them each separately in succession, under separate subheadings. We will begin with Gal. 3:8, which is connected with God's great Oath-bound Covenant to Abraham.
THE GOSPEL PREACHED TO ABRAHAM
"And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen [Gentiles] through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed" (Gal. 3:8; Gen. 12:3; 22:16-18).
Some may have thought that the Gospel message is found only in the New Testament, but here we are told that it was preached beforehand to Abraham; and the Gospel, the "good news," was that through him and his seed (especially Christ and His Church, the chief Seed—Gal. 3:16, 29) all nations would be blessed; for according to the Scriptures, God will actually justify (make right, perfect) the heathen, the Gentiles, including all the willing and obedient non-elect ones-not through ignorance, but "through faith," which implies that they will all come to the knowledge of the Truth (Isa. 11:9; 1 Tim. 2:4).
It was not God's purpose to save the world or to attempt to save it in Abraham's day; but in His great Oath-bound Covenant with Abraham He did set forth in a very terse form His glorious Plan for the salvation of the world. Thus He revealed the Gospel in a nutshell—the "good news" for Abraham, for and through his seed and for "all the families of the earth."
Some of the blessings referred to in this covenant belonged to Abraham personally and some of them belong to the seed (Gen. 12:1-4; 22:16-18). In the latter passage, by the expression "the stars of heaven" the heavenly seed—Christ and the Church of the Firstborn (Heb. 12:23)—is meant; and by the expression "the sand which is upon the sea shore" the earthly seed is meant.
These covenant promises are a summary of God's great "Plan of the Ages"; therefore the Apostle Paul in Gal. 3:7-9, 16, 29 calls them the Gospel. They guarantee (1) that Abraham and his seed would be blessed richly, (2) that they would in due time do a work of blessing for and to others, and (3) that their work of blessing would include the whole human family, living and dead.
Accordingly, the Abrahamic Covenant is the Bible in a nutshell; the whole Bible is really an elaboration of this covenant; and though at the time God made the covenant with Abraham and his seed He was doing nothing directly to and for the world to bring them salvation, it nevertheless proves that it was His great Plan to bless at some future time with an opportunity for salvation all the non-elect race—the dead as well as the living—who had not had a chance for salvation through Abraham and his seed.
This covenant, as the Apostle Paul teaches, includes the resurrection of the dead (Acts 26:6-8). Other Scriptures show us that the time for this work of blessing the non-elect world with such a privilege of obtaining salvation is after all the elect of all their classes—of both the heavenly and the earthly seed—are complete, i.e., during the Millennium, the world's thousand-year judgment day (Acts 17:31; 2 Pet. 3:7, 8; Rev. 20:12-15; see our booklet, Is There Hope for Any of the Unsaved Dead?—listed on the back page of this issue).
"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life" (John 3:16). We will examine each part of this wonderful passage, which in a brief form gives the Gospel message.
"God so loved." Is this true? Some claim that it was Jesus who so loved the world; that Satan outwitted God in the Garden of Eden, by causing man to sin; that consequently God is angry, very angry, with the human race because of their sin; but that Jesus so loved us that He threw Himself between us and His angry Father, and thus received the fatal blow on our behalf—which would have landed us into eternal torture. They claim that Jesus, being God, could not die, that His death on the cross was not actual death, and that He arose from the tomb when He wished to do so.
Some of us may have been taught along this line of false and unscriptural reasoning. How much better it is to believe that "God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners [enemies, v. 10], Christ died for us (Rom. 5:8)! "Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation [satisfaction] for our sins … God so loved us" (1 John 4:10, 11).
"The world." Did God really love the world? the whole world of mankind? This is blessed news indeed. Many have supposed and taught that only those who believe on Jesus as their Savior before the Second Advent of Christ (probably not one in a thousand of the world's inhabitants so far) can be saved, and that all the rest of the billions of mankind are eternally lost, most of whom have never even had a chance to hear of the only name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved (Acts 4:12; 16:31). And many still hold to the false doctrines of the Dark Ages, claiming that to be lost means to be eternally tortured in everlasting fire at the hands of fireproof devils (for a complete examination of the hell of the Bible, including every text where the word hell occurs, see our booklet The Hell of the Bible, listed on the back page of this issue).
But God's Word tells us that "the wages of sin is death [cessation of life]" (Rom. 6:23, 21), that "the soul that sinneth, it shall die" (Ezek. 18:4, 20), that "sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death"(James 1:15) and that Jesus "was made flesh, " "that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man" (John 1:14; Heb. 2:9). God "will have ALL men to be saved [from the Adamic sentence], and [additionally] to come unto the knowledge [epignosis, exact knowledge] of the truth." What truth? Especially the truth that "the man Christ Jesus gave himself a ransom for ALL, to be testified in due time" (1 Tim. 2:4-6).
"That he gave his only begotten Son." Here again, many misunderstand the nature of Jesus the SON of God, claiming that He was not really God's Son, but was the same as God Himself. According to their theory, God could not give His Son, since He had no Son to give.
A begotten Son, too? Impossible!—according to their thought. But if we do not believe that God as the Father had a son whom He had begotten, we cannot really believe that God gave His only begotten Son. How much better it is to believe the word of God to His Son, "Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee" (Psa. 2:7; Heb. 1:5), and the testimony of Jesus, that God had created Him, "the firstborn of every creature" (Col. 1:15), "the beginning of the creation of God" (Rev. 3:14)! He Himself testified, "My Father is greater than I" (John 14:28).
"That whosoever believeth in [Greek, into] him." "Whatsoever is not of faith is sin" (Rom. 14:23)—the promise of everlasting life is only to Christian believers. But does it seem reasonable that God so loved the world and yet made provision for only one out of a thousand, allowing the rest to remain in ignorance to perish? Only those who "shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?" (Rom. 10:13, 14.) Surely they could not!
But our loving Heavenly Father has provided for Jesus to be additionally the Teacher, not only of the Church (1 Cor. 1:30) but also of the whole world, saying: "I will also give thee for a light to the Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth"; "for the earth shall be full of knowledge of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea"; "and they shall teach no more every man his neighbor, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD" (Luke 2:32; Isa. 49:6; 11:9; Jer. 31:34).
Jesus is "the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world" (John 1:9). And thus shall all men "come unto the knowledge of the truth." Jesus Himself testified, "I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw [favorably influence by My teachings and works of blessing] all men unto me" (John 12:32).
But if the people of the world would have everlasting life, they also must believe "into him," i.e., accept Jesus as their Savior and King and dedicate their lives to God, their great Benefactor, who will "in the dispensation of the fulness of times [in its first part, the Millennial Age]," "gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him: in whom also we [who believe] have [already, during the Gospel Age] obtained an inheritance" (Eph. 1:10, 11). Thus there is hope, not only for the Church but also for the world, including the heathen; for Jesus is "the propitiation for our [the Church's] sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world" (1 John 2:2).
"Should not perish, but have everlasting life. " Here again, some—those who hold to the "doctrines of devils" (1 Tim. 4:1)—would paraphrase this to say: "should not have everlasting life in hell [which they misconstrue to mean eternal torture], but have everlasting life in heaven." Thus they would wrest from this Scripture its true meaning and substitute the eternal torture doctrine, the most blasphemous error of the Dark Ages, under which delusion many sincere Christians still labor.
Webster's Dictionary gives the primary meaning of "perish" as "to die, to lose life, in any manner. "Liddell and Scott's Lexicon, a recognized authority, defines the Greek word apollumi (translated "perish" in John 3:16) as meaning (in the active voice) "to destroy utterly, kill, slay." Being in the middle voice in John 3:16, it has, as shown in Goodwin's Greek Grammar, article 1242, a reflexive sense in which "the subject is represented as acting upon himself. " Thayer's Lexicon, another recognized authority, defines apollumi in the middle voice as meaning "to perish, to be lost, ruined, destroyed." Other lexicons confirm this meaning. Wilson's Emphatic Diaglott (interlinear) translates it "be destroyed." And the text itself really defines its own meaning, by placing perishing as the opposite, the antithesis, of obtaining everlasting life.
God's great gift of His only begotten Son for the salvation of the world insures to each member of Adam's race a trial for everlasting life — not that there is a second chance for any of them, but that there is one full, fair opportunity for each of them, because Christ died for all. Some (the Church) hear the "good tidings," repent for sin and have their sins forgiven in this world, or dispensation, the Gospel Age, and some will hear the "good tidings," repent and have their sins forgiven "in the world to come" (Matt. 12:32), in the Millennium.
Life, everlasting or eternal, is promised only to the pure, the righteous (Matt. 5:8; 25:46; 1 Cor. 6:9, 10; Heb. 12:14). Our Heavenly Father intends to have a pure universe; and He has commissioned His only begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, as His Vicegerent, to do the purifying work for Him. Thus Christ and His Bride, the Lamb's Wife, His joint-heirs—the Second Adam and the Second Eve—will regenerate the non-elect of the human race and give "the water of life" and an opportunity for salvation to "whosoever will" (2 Cor. 11:2; Rev. 21:2; 19:7; Rom. 8:17; 1 Cor. 15:45, 47; Matt. 19:28; Rev. 5:9, 10; 22:17).
THE ANGEL'S MESSAGE TO THE SHEPHERDS
"And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people" (Luke 2:10).
Here again we have the Gospel in a nutshell. The Gospel message, the "good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people," was given over 1,900 years ago, and we know that all people have not yet heard this glad message and obtained this great joy; in fact, the great majority have died without even hearing of the good tidings. Therefore, they must receive these blessings in the future—during the glorious thousand-year reign of Christ and His saints, when Satan is fully bound, "that he should deceive the nations no more, till the thousand years should be fulfilled" (Rev. 20:1-4).
Then, in "the times of refreshing" from the presence of the Lord (Jehovah), He sends again (Heb. 9:28) "Jesus Christ, which [who] before was preached unto you: whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began" (Acts 3:19-21).
"And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain [kingdom] of the LORD'S [Jehovah's] house shall be established in the top of the mountains [above all earth's autocratic governments], and shall be exalted above the hills [over all democracies]; and all nations shall flow unto it [become subject to it]. And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD [become subject to God's Kingdom in its heavenly and earthly phases] … and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion [the glorified Christ, Head and Body—Eph. 1:22, 23; Rev. 14:1] shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem [the Ancient and Youthful Worthies, the earthly phase of the Kingdom]. And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruninghooks [they will stop forging the destructive instruments of war, and will make useful, constructive instruments instead]: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more" (Isa. 2:2-4; Micah 4:1-4). How we and all mankind long for that time!
THE ANGEL'S MESSAGE TO JOSEPH
"And she [Mary] shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins" (Matt. 1:21).
This is another Bible text that gives the Gospel in a nutshell. Not only does it specify our Lord's very significant personal name, stating that He would bring salvation to His people and deliver them from their sins, but also it indicates a basic truth, essential to such salvation, namely, that He would have a virgin birth (Matt. 1:23; Isa. 7:14), and not have a human father, a member of Adam's fallen race.
Our Lord's personal name both while in the flesh and since He has come into the spirit nature is JESUS. The Latin equivalent of the Hebrew is JEHOSHUA (ordinarily written JOSHUA; compare Acts 7:45; Heb. 4:8, and note margins); the Hebrew form YAHSHUA means Jehovah is salvation, or Jehovah saves. From Matt. 1:21 we see that this name refers to His office as the Savior of all who become His people, since He will deliver them not only from the condemnation of sin but also from the power and effects of sin.
Another name that belongs to Jesus in His posthuman existence (though it belonged to Him in His human and prehuman existence also) is the "Just One" or "Righteous One"—Acts 3:14 (ASV); 7:52; 22:14; 1 John 2:1. This is an attribute of character in Him that was absolutely indispensable to His becoming mankind's Savior, for had He not been just, or righteous, He could not have become a Savior or an acceptable Ransom-price for Adam and his race. His justice makes Him acceptable to God's justice and One able as our Advocate to impute His righteousness to God for us and to us before God.
Our only hope for salvation is in One who was a perfect man, the virgin-born Jesus, with God as His Father, for of those begotten by human fathers, Adam's condemned race, we read (Psa. 49:7): "None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him." Surely one convict under a death sentence is in no position to offer his condemned life as a substitute for the condemned life of another convict and thus to save him, for both are condemned to death; nor could any of Adam's condemned race offer a perfect human life to pay as a ransom, an equivalent, a corresponding price, for the perfect human life forfeited by Adam when he willfully disobeyed God.
But Jesus, who laid aside the glory that He had with His Father before the world existed and "was made flesh" (John 17:5; 1:14), was able to offer His perfect human soul, Himself, a perfect human being, as a ransom, a corresponding price, for Adam and the race that was in his loins when he sinned. Thus He "made his soul an offering for sin" and "poured out his soul unto death [for 'the wages of sin is (not eternal life in torment, but) death']" (Isa. 53:10, 12; Rom. 6:23).
Of God's original creation of man, in Adam, "the first man" (1 Cor. 15:45), we read (Psa. 8:5): "Thou hast made him a little lower than the angels, and hast crowned him with glory and honour"; so as a Ransom, a corresponding price, for Adam and his race, "we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death [not eternal life in torture, for that is not the penalty for sin] for every man" (Heb. 2:9, 16; 1 Cor. 15:3). "Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood [human nature], he also himself likewise took part of the same [became a human being—John 1:14]; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil" (Heb. 2:14).
How deeply we should appreciate and love our dear Lord and Savior, who "though he was rich, yet for our sakes he became poor [was made even `lower than the angels for the suffering of death'], that we through his poverty might be rich [in being given the gift of everlasting life]" (2 Cor. 8:9; Eph. 2:7)! "God sent forth his Son, made of a woman [a virgin], made under the law" (Gal. 4:4).
According to Phil. 2:7-11, Jesus "was made in the likeness of men: and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name [nature, honor, office, power and authority—Matt. 28:18] which is above every name [the Father's name alone excepted—1 Cor. 15:27]: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things [Persons] in the heaven, and things [persons] in earth, things [persons] under the earth [the dead in their graves, who will be brought back from the unconscious state of death and then will bow to Jesus; compare Psa. 22:29; Isa. 45:22, 23; Rom. 14:9]; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."
All have not in this life submitted to Jesus, nor have all in this life recognized His right to rule over them. Therefore this must occur in the next life in the case of those who did not do these things in this life. Isa. 35 is to the point. In v. 4 Christ's Second Advent, accomplishing the overthrow of Satan's empire and the punishment of its supporters in the Great Tribulation, is set forth. Vs. 5, 6 teach how He will enlighten, reform and uplift sinful humanity, and the restoration of Paradise is taught in vs. 7, 1 and 2. V. 8 teaches the opening of the Highway of Holiness for the unclean (Adam's sin-defiled race), who, however, must cleanse themselves, if they would pass over its full length. V. 9 shows that all harmful influences, conditions and things will be taken away from it, but that the redeemed, those who will by Jesus' Ransom be delivered from the death sentence (1 Tim. 2:4-6), will be privileged to walk there. V. 10 shows that the dead, whom Jesus' Ransom also covers (Hosea 13:14), will return from the sleep of death (John 5:28, 29) and come to Zion, Jesus and the Church (the Second Adam and Eve-1 Cor. 15:45-47; Rev. 22:17), with songs and everlasting joy upon their heads: and they shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away."
A GOSPEL DECLARATION BY PAUL
"The gospel of God (which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures) concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which [who] was made of the seed of David according to the flesh, and declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead" (Rom. 1:1-4).
Here is another good brief statement of the Gospel. Paul, whom the Lord appointed to be one of the twelve Apostles, and to whom He gave the most prominent position among the Apostles, including the privilege of writing most of the books of the New Testament, declares in this passage a very important truth connected with "the gospel of God." God had promised an opportunity of salvation for all of Adam's race through Christ and had set forth this good news through all His holy prophets (Acts 3:21) in the sacred Scriptures. Paul explains that Jesus "was made of the seed of David [through his mother, the virgin Mary] according to the flesh," even as God had promised.
But while Jesus was thus "made flesh" and could and did give His "flesh," i.e., His humanity, and His life as a perfect human being, "undefiled, separate from sinners" (Heb. 7:26), "for the life of the world" (John 6:51), and while this was all that was needed as a Ransom-price to pay to justice the debt for Adam and his race, the Apostle shows that our salvation would still be incomplete if our Savior were not raised from the dead, "with power, according to the spirit of holiness." We need more than merely a dead Savior, perfect "according to the flesh," the "man Christ Jesus, who gave himself a ransom for all," though this is basic and essential to our salvation; we need also a living Savior, "an high priest," "made higher than the heavens," a powerful Savior, who "is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them" (Heb. 7:25, 26; Eph. 1:19-21).
Jesus as a perfect human being offered Himself at the age of 30, the age of full manhood under the Law, to do His Father's will, even as prophesied of Him (Psa. 40:6-8; Heb. 10:5-13). He was baptized at Jordan and was there begotten of God's holy Spirit (Matt. 3:13-17). As a New Creature Son "he learned obedience by the things which he suffered; and being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him" (Heb. 5:8, 9). It was not as a human Son, but as a New Creature Son, that He was "called of God an high priest after the order of Melchisedec" (Psa. 110:1-4; Heb. 5:10; 6:20).
During the 3½ years of Jesus' earthly priestly ministry as a Spirit-begotten New Creature Son, He was instructed, perfected and severely tested by His Father. He was faithful unto death, even the ignominious death of the cross and, as the Apostle states, was "declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead. "
Jesus' great power was according to the spirit, or disposition (2 Tim. 1:7), of holiness. The depth and fullness of His consecration and His delight in doing the Father's will enabled Him in His enlarged capacity to receive God's holy disposition without measure (John 3:34; note by contrast our limited condition and the exhortation to us to be enlarged—Rom. 12:3; 2 Cor. 6:13).
Jesus' resurrection from the dead manifested God's declaration and approval of Him. His Spirit-begotten New Creature was now ready to be born of the Spirit as a spirit being, when He would be enabled to come and go invisibly, as the wind, even as He had so clearly explained to Nicodemus (John 3:6, 8). This accounts for His ability as a spirit being during the 40 days after His resurrection, to appear to His disciples. He did this only a few times and in different forms (Mark 16:12; John 20:14, 15), and then He vanished from their sight (Luke 24:31), even entering the room "when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled for fear of the Jews" (John 20:19, 26).
Jesus was "put to death in the flesh, but made alive [not in the flesh, be it noted, but] in the spirit"(1 Pet. 3:18, RSV). He did not take back His "flesh," which He gave "for the life of the world." In His resurrection as a perfected New Creature He was "the firstfruit [see Diaglott] of them that slept" (1 Cor. 15:20), "the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the pre-eminence" (Col. 1:18). He "was delivered for our offences [but this did not complete the providing of the Ransom-price; the following is also necessary], and was raised again for our justification" (Rom. 4:25). At His ascension He, our living High Priest, entered "into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us" (Heb. 9:24). Thus during the Gospel Age He, our living Savior, at the right hand of God makes intercession for us (Rom. 8:34). We thank God for our Advocate (1 John 2:1), who on the basis of His Ransom merit intercedes for us and as the Captain of our Salvation with grace sufficient helps us to overcome in the good fight of faith and to lay hold on eternal life (2 Cor. 9:8; 12:9; Heb. 2:10; 1 Tim. 6:12).
THE EVERLASTING GOSPEL
"And I saw another angel fly in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach unto them that dwell on the earth, and to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people, saying with a loud voice, Fear God, and give glory to him, for the hour of his judgment is come: and worship him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters" (Rev. 14:6, 7).
The Everlasting Gospel here spoken of embraces all the good news of salvation for the Church and the world contained in God's Word. Included in it is the good news of Gal. 3:8-that in Abraham and his Seed all the families of the earth will be blessed; John 3:16—that God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in (Greek, into) Him should not perish, but have everlasting life; Luke 2:10-that the good news of great joy shall be to all people; Matt. 1:21—that our salvation centers in the virgin birth of Jesus, whose name Yahshua is significant of the salvation provided by Jehovah, and that He will save His people from their sins; and Rom. 1:1-4—that while Jesus was made of the seed of David according to the flesh, He was by His resurrection from the dead as a Spirit-born New Creature declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness.
This Everlasting Gospel has been heralded prominently by the Lord's messengers (His angels) "from one end of heaven to the other" (Matt. 24:31), for the harvesting of the elect; it has been done in plain view of the powers of spiritual control in the ecclesiastical heavens—"in the midst of heaven." This good news has been going forth especially in the message of The Divine Plan of the Ages (Vol. 1 of Studies in the Scriptures), and it will continue to go forth until in the Millennial Age, the world's thousand-year judgment Day, it reaches "every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people"—all mankind, living and dead. It will exhort them, call to them, "with a loud voice-a strong, clear and logical message—to renounce all sin and error and to worship and glorify God; for this is His great Day of judgment for their blessing and salvation to everlasting life.
The Christ, Head and Body, with the assistance of the Great Multitude, in the heavenly phase of the Kingdom, earth's new government (Psa. 45:14, 15; Rev. 7:9-17), and the Ancient and the Youthful Worthies, the two elect classes developed respectively before and after the "heavenly calling" (Heb. 3:1) of the Gospel Age (Psa. 45:16; Isa. 32:1), in the earthly phase of the Kingdom, will flood the light of truth into every dark corner, washing, scouring and polishing every vessel that can be made fit for the Master's use, hanging every one in its proper place (Isa. 22:23, 24). sweeping out and "utterly destroying" the rubbish ("all the wicked will he destroy," annihilate, in the Second Death—Psa. 145:20; Rev. 20:14; 21:8), but giving everlasting life on earth to the meek and humble of mankind, the "sheep" class, which inheritance was prepared for them "from the foundation of the world"—a sample of which was given in the Garden of Eden (Psa. 37:9-11, 22, 29, 34, 38-40; 2 Pet. 3:13).
What joy and thanksgiving should be the portion of all true Christians for the unspeakable gift of God's great, infinite love! We who have repented for sin and have accepted Jesus as our Savior, believing into Him, by consecrating our lives to Him and becoming His disciples, are especially blessed. And we look forward with joy to His coming Kingdom Rule of Righteousness on earth, the world's thousand-year Judgment Day (Rev. 5:9, 10; 20:4, 6; 2 Tim. 4:1; 2 Pet. 3:7, 8), when He will bless all the families of the earth—when His "judgments" will be "in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness" (Isa. 26:9; Acts 17:31) and the people will be freed from the bondage of corruption, the curse of sin and death, "into the glorious liberty of the children of God" (Rom. 8:19-22; 1 Cor. 15:20-26; Rev. 20:13; 21:1-5; 22:1-3).
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