Introduction to the Gospel Message
What does the future hold for you and your loved ones? What will the world be like? Will it be a world of unending chaos or a world of abundance and happiness? Why is there such perplexity and confusion in every phase of life today? Is there something beyond this physical life? If there is, what is it and what will it be like?
These are all very important questions that people have sought answers to since the beginning of mankind's existence. Are there answers to these questions? Yes, there are answers, and they are found in the most published, read, and studied book ever written—the Bible.
The Bible is unique. It is the only book that has the answers to the basic questions of life and claims to be written by the Creator God. It tells humanity who its Creator is, why it was created, and what its ultimate destiny is.
Although the Bible does reveal the purpose for human existence, the understanding of this awesome purpose has been intentionally hidden within its pages in a carefully coded message. But why? It has been hidden from most people until humanity could learn and record the lessons that only time and life experience can teach:
"And the disciples came, and said to him, Why do you speak to them in parables? He answered and said, Because it is given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given. . . Therefore I speak to them in parables: because seeing, they see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand. . .' (vs.10-13 Para.).
"And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, that says, By hearing you shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing you shall see, and shall not perceive: For this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them' (vs.14-15 KJV). See also Isa.6:9-10.
"But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear. For truly I say to you, That many prophets and righteous men have desired to see those things which you see, and have not seen them; and to hear those things which you hear, and have not heard them" (vs.16-17 KJV). See also Mk.4:11-12; Lk.8:10.
The Mystery Revealed
Now, in the end of this age, prior to the return of Christ, many of the hidden mysteries contained in the Bible are being revealed and proclaimed as an advance announcement that God is beginning to initiate the next phase of his great plan for humanity. See Dan.12:4,10; Eph.6: 19; Col.1:24-27; 1.Pet.1:12.
The Gospel Message
"Go you therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy spirit: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen" (Matt.28:19-20 KJV).
God the Father and Jesus Christ's purpose for humanity is so awesome and exciting that it is almost beyond belief. God the Father who sent his Son Jesus Christ to earth over two thousand years ago is in the process of creating children out of human beings. Yes, that's right! God the Father is expanding his Family:
"But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God,. . ." (Jn.1:12 KJV).
"Behold, what manner of love the Father has bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know him. Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it does not yet appear what we shall be like: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is" (1.Jn.3:1-2 para ). See also 2.Cor.6:18; Heb.2:10; Rom.8:14,19.
At some point in eternity past, a plan unfolded that is more fascinating and engrossing than any science fiction story or real life saga that has ever been told. That plan involves every person who has lived, is now living, or is yet to be born. With the creation of humans, God the Father embarked upon the greatest and grandest of all his creations; he is creating beings just like himself (Phil.3:21; 1.Jn.3:2), and his intent is to share with them all he has created or will ever create throughout eternity.
THE GOOD NEWS
The entire New Testament is concerned with only one theme—the good news message from God the Father to humanity.
The New Testament:
Tells about the Father's plan for humanity.
Records his message and the people and events surrounding its proclamation––past, present, and future.
Reveals why he sent the message and what he hopes to accomplish through it.
The Father's good news to humanity reveals the following important information about grace, peace, Christ, Salvation, and the Kingdom of God:
Grace - God's favor, concern, and compassion toward humanity Peace Between God and humanity, and between individuals and nations
Christ - Sending of the Redeemer and Savior of humanity to earth Salvation How to be saved from eternal death
Kingdom of God - God's eternal government
Within these five interwoven subjects, we find the focus of everything that Jesus said and did for the 3½ years of his ministry, as well as a strong witness and warning to specific individuals and the entire world at large.
The gospel is a witness to specific individuals that they have been called to salvation during this present age, and it is a witness to the whole world that God the Father exists and is beginning to implement his plan to save humanity from destruction.
The gospel is a warning to those whom God the Father calls to salvation during this present age, that if they do not accept the opportunity that they are being offered, they will suffer his judgment— eternal death.
The gospel is also a warning to the world at large that God the Father is about to intervene in world affairs and punish those who will not accept and obey his good news message.
The following chapters are meant to provide an overview of the good news from God the Father to humanity and to reveal a small part of the awesome opportunity that is being offered to those who will hear and heed his message.
By B.L. Cocherell b1w1