The gospel is not “Believe in Jesus so that you’ll go to heaven”

Quick: what is “the gospel”?  

In my corner of the religious world, I’ve often heard the gospel described as believing in Jesus so that you’ll go to heaven when you die.

That may be an outcome of the gospel – trusting in God's Messiah produces resurrection and eternal life – but it is not the gospel itself.

Look at the first 4 books of the New Testament – the gospels – you’ll find a different message:

John: “Repent! The kingdom of God is near.”
-Matthew 3

Yeshua: “Repent, for the kingdom of God is near.”
-Matthew 4

Peter: “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Yeshua the Messiah for the forgiveness of your sin.”
-Acts 2

See a common theme? The Messiah, the Messiah’s Elijah, and the Messiah’s chief disciple share this message.

The gospel is actually a very old message, with a new urgency. In a nutshell, the gospel is: "Turn from your sins to God." This is the same message of the prophets in the Hebrew Bible. 

And the new urgency is: "Because the Kingdom of God is near."

The Kingdom of God: the Messianic Era

imageThe arrival of the long-awaited Messiah was a divine down-payment on the promises of the good things to come, an assurance that God's Big Plan, including the epic this-changes-everything Kingdom of God, was near. Therefore, we must turn from sin now and turn back to God.

The Kingdom of God is the final empire on earth in which all nations are in submission to God, with God’s Messiah reigning over all nations. This Kingdom of God, this Messianic Era, is drawing near, and the arrival of King Messiah himself is evidence of its nearness.

In the Messianic Era, atheism and agnosticism will cease to exist given the empirical evidence of God. World religions will crumble with revelation that there is only one God. The rebellious nature of humanity will be quelled as the world acknowledges God and recognizes the goodness in following God’s ways. Adultery, murder, theft, and other crimes decrease and finally cease, as the adversary is put away, no longer permitted to deceive humanity, producing humans that see clearly the folly and destruction of sin.

“In the Messianic Era, we will all ☪☮e✡i✝ under one King.”

In the Messianic Era, we will all ☪☮e✡i✝, but under one King: all people, races, nations, philosophies, science, religions, and ideologies will submit to the King of all Kings. The whole populace of earth will acknowledge God and worship him.

Humanity united under one king will produce real actual genuine world peace, instituted by the Prince of Peace, the great Jewish King reigning from Jerusalem, Yeshua the Messiah.

This is the Kingdom of God, this is the Messianic Era.

Knowing the Messianic Era is near means there’s no time to waste: turn back to God now. That’s the gospel. That’s the core message of Yeshua, John, the disciples, and Paul. It’s the old message of the prophets, but with a new urgency knowing that God’s making good on his promises, and with Messiah’s arrival, it’s all starting to happen now.

This is a snippet from my recent teaching at my local congregation:

Elementary Principles of Messianic Faith, Part III

No comments:

Post a Comment

Husband, dad, disciple of the Jewish Messiah Yeshua, technologist. Author of Chavah Messianic Radio, MessianicChords, and EtzMitzvot. @judahgabriel


You're reading Kineti, the longest-running Messianic blog on the web, now on its 14th year. Here you'll find extraordinarily rare pragmatism & insight into Messianic Judaism and Hebrew Roots Christianity.