Preach The Gospel”
by Micky Galloway
Isaiah had prophesied, concerning the kingdom that all nations would flow into it and that the word would go forth “from Jerusalem” (Isa. 2:2-3). Daniel had prophesied, “And in the days of those kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed, nor shall the sovereignty thereof be left to another people; but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand for ever” (Dan. 2:44). The Lord’s church, His kingdom, would be composed of people from all nations, both Jew and Gentile. After Jesus was crucified, buried, and raised from the dead, He commissioned his apostles, “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to the whole creation. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that disbelieveth shall be condemned” (Mk. 16:15-16). Matthew’s account of this commission tells us, “Go ye therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world” (Matt. 28:19-20). In Acts 1:8, just before His ascension, Jesus said to the apostles, “ye shall be my witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea and Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.” As witnesses of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ, the apostles could not but tell of the things they had seen and heard (Acts 4:20). The gospel, the good news of salvation through Christ, was the message to be preached. Disciples are not made by the doctrines of men (cf. Matt. 15:8-9). The “social gospel” only converts to recreation and social activities. It is a gospel of “ME.” The “denominational gospel” results in the “Papacy” and the “faith only” teaching that will not justify (Jas. 2:24). The “latter-day” gospel is “another gospel” because it is not the gospel Paul preached and is therefore “accursed” (Gal. 1:6-9). It is the purpose of this article to examine the preaching of the gospel of Christ “unto the uttermost part of the earth.”
The gospel was preached in Jerusalem and to those of Judea. In Acts 2, in Jerusalem, the apostle Peter addressed the Jews, “Ye men of Judaea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and give ear unto my words …” (Acts 2:14). “And there arose on that day a great persecution against the church which was in Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea …” (Acts 8:1). In Acts 5:28, the leaders of the nation of Israel accused the apostles, “ye have filled Jerusalem with your teaching, and intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.” The result of the gospel being preached in Jerusalem is evident. Acts 2:37-41, “Now when they heard (this,) they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and the rest of the apostles, Brethren, what shall we do? And Peter (said) unto them, Repent ye, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ unto the remission of your sins; and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For to you is the promise, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, (even) as many as the Lord our God shall call unto him. And with many other words he testified, and exhorted them, saying, Save yourselves from this crooked generation. They then that received his word were baptized: and there were added (unto them) in that day about three thousand souls.” Acts 6:7 tells us, “And the word of God increased; and the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem exceedingly; and a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith” (Acts 6:7).
The gospel was preached among the Samaritans. In Acts 8:1 we learn, “And there arose on that day a great persecution against the church which was in Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles.” Acts 8:4 tells us, “They therefore that were scattered abroad, went about preaching the word.” “Philip went down to the city of Samaria, and proclaimed unto them the Christ. And the multitudes gave heed with one accord unto the things that were spoken by Philip, when they heard, and saw the signs which he did. For (from) many of those that had unclean spirits, they came out, crying with a loud voice: and many that were palsied, and that were lame, were healed. And there was much joy in that city” (Acts 8:5-8). Philip preached to them, “good tidings concerning the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ.” The results of preaching the gospel among the Samaritans is seen in that “they were baptized, both men and women” (Acts 8:12).
The gospel was preached among the Gentiles. For the first time in recorded history we read of the conversion of the Gentile household of Cornelius. In Acts 10:23-33 Cornelius had called together his kinsmen and his near friends to “hear all things that have been commanded thee of the Lord.” Cornelius had sent to Joppa to bring Peter to Caesarea that he might preach the gospel. Cornelius had made considerable effort to be present and to assure the presence of others for this important occasion. Evidence of the success of Peter’s preaching is seen in that he commanded them to be baptized. “Can any man forbid the water, that these should not be baptized, who have received the Holy Spirit as well as we? And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ” (Acts 10:47-48). The apostle Paul began his first of three preaching journeys, being sent out by the good church in Antioch of Syria, to preach among the Gentiles (Acts 13:1). He was known as the apostle to the Gentiles (cf. Acts 22:21). The success of the gospel is seen in such passages as Acts 18:8 where in Corinth many “hearing, believed, and were baptized.”
Please note, “… that in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom knew not God, it was God’s good pleasure through the foolishness of the preaching to save them that believe” (1 Cor. 1:21). The gospel is a powerful message! “The gospel only makes Christians only,” wherever it is preached. While time is ours, let us go forth “sowing the precious seed.” Let us see the horrible, eternal consequences of sin and the urgency of the good news of salvation in Christ. Let us preach it with excitement and enthusiasm to all who will hear. The gospel was preached to all during the first century. Paul wrote, “the gospel which ye heard, which was preached in all creation under heaven; whereof I Paul was made a minister” (Col. 1:23). The results were consistent, “They then that received his word were baptized: and there were added (unto them) in that day about three thousand souls” (Acts 2:41). Would you accept the challenge to read the book of Acts and see if you can find an exception? – Fifth Street East church of Christ Bulletin, November 18, 2018.
By Joe R. Price
Growing up on a farm taught me pretty quickly and easily, that there are only two genders, male and female. When I read the Bible, it taught me the same thing (Gen. 1:27; 2:18-20, 23). But now, some have the idea that gender is derived from the brain (what they think and feel they are), and not from biology (what their body shows they are). Furthermore, a growing chorus tells us we must recognize their delusional thinking as an accurate description of who they really are. And, if we do not, we are labeled as biased haters (read Galatians 4:16).
The Washington State Department of Health has enacted new rules allowing a person to select a third gender choice on the WA state birth certificate. Starting January 27, 2018, a person can designate their gender on their birth certificate as male, female or X. Gender X is defined as “a gender that is not exclusively male or female, including, but not limited to, intersex, agender, amalgagender, androgynous, bigender, demigender, female-to-male, genderfluid, genderqueer, male-to-female, neutrois, nonbinary, pangender, third sex, transgender, transsexual, Two Spirit, and unspecified” (“Rule-Making Activities,” doh.wa.gov). That sounds like a lot more than three to me. (I never saw any gender X on the farm!)
“Gender dysphoria is a condition where a person experiences discomfort or distress because there’s a mismatch between their biological sex and gender identity. It’s sometimes known as gender identity disorder (GID), gender incongruence or transgenderism. Biological sex is assigned at birth...” (nhs.uk). “People who have gender dysphoria feel strongly that their gender does not match their biology” (WebMD).
Nature teaches two genders; so does Jesus, and the Bible (Matt. 19:4). Our children and grandchildren are being taught falsehood as the truth (1 Tim. 6:20-21). Christ is the Light, who leads the lost out of sin’s confusion into God’s mercy (Eph. 4:17-19; Jn. 1:4-9; 8:12; 1 Pet. 2:9-10). – The Spirit’s Sword, January 14, 2018.