What is the Gospel?
The word Gospel in our Bibles literally means Good News or Glad Tidings and is the English translation of the Greek word evangelicon. The Gospel of the Kingdom of God was preached by Jesus,
"Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God." Mark 1:14
And the Apostles,
"And he (the apostle Paul) went into the synagogue, and spake boldly for the space of three months, disputing and persuading the things concerning the kingdom of God." Acts 19:8
and was a message of good tidings to men and women both in their day and also in our own.
What is the Good News?
The gospel message in the Bible is one of great hope in that it offers mankind the opportunity of eternal life. This good news is in total contrast to the certain death which naturally faces each one of us...
"For the living know that they shall die: but the dead know not anything, neither have they any more a reward; for the memory of them is forgotten". Ecclesiastes 9:5
On the other hand, an appreciation of the gospel can save us...
"I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth". Romans 1:16
We are invited then to learn and understand precisely what the "Gospel of the Kingdom of God" is in order that we may partake of this wonderful salvation from death. So that we may appreciate what is meant when Jesus went about all the cities and villages in Israel "teaching in their synagogues and preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom", it is necessary to consider firstly what constitutes the Kingdom of God and then to see what part Jesus has in the divine teaching.
The Kingdom of God
Jesus taught his disciples to pray,
“Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven". Matthew 6:10
The Bible teaches that the Kingdom of God, to be established on earth, is the re-established ancient kingdom of Israel.
"When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?" Acts 1:6/ See also Micah 4:6-8 and Obadiah:20-21
The capital city of the Kingdom will be Jerusalem.
At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the LORD; and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the LORD, to Jerusalem: neither shall they walk any more after the imagination of their evil heart. Jeremiah 3:17
Furthermore the re-established kingdom of Israel will be governed by Jesus sitting on David's throne in Jerusalem
"And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever." 2 Samuel 7:12-13
"And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end." Luke 1:30-33
This Kingdom shall subdue all other nations and kingdoms. In the book of the prophet Daniel we read the following,
"The God of heaven shall set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms and it shall stand for ever". Daniel 2:44
Jesus the Saviour King
Jesus (Saviour) Christ (Anointed) will shortly return to the earth...
"Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven , shall so come, in like manner, as ye have seen him go into heaven." Acts 1:6, 11
He will come to sit on David's throne in Jerusalem and rule a conquered world in righteousness and peace. He will also share the inheritance of the Kingdom with his faithful followers - styled the saints. The Apostle Paul was one such man.
"Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing." 2 Timothy 4:8
"But the saints of the most High shall take the kingdom, and possess the kingdom for ever, even for ever and ever". Daniel 7:18, 27
In order that all things which God had promised to faithful men of old be fulfilled it was necessary that sin, the cause of death, should be overcome and eventually abolished from the earth...
"Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption. Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed". 1 Corinthians 15:50-52
Jesus, by living a life in total obedience to his Father's will, was able to accomplish this feat culminating in his sacrifice on the cross.
“So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation." Hebrews 9:26-28
Offer of eternal life
God raised Jesus from the dead. He now sits in an immortal state at his Father's side in heaven waiting for the appointed time to return to the earth and fulfil the promises. Through an understanding and belief of the teachings of Jesus and apostles we can, through baptism "put on Christ" and as immortal beings partake of the glories of the future age to live and reign with him as kings and priests,
"And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation; and hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth". Revelation 5:9-10
The gospel is indeed good news for us mortal, death-stricken creatures, with its offer to us of eternal life in association with the glories and blessings of God's kingdom on earth.