The Power of the Gospel of the Kingdom:
“Therefore I have reason to glory in Christ Jesus in the things which pertain to God. For I will not dare to speak of any of those things which Christ has not accomplished through me, in word and deed, to make the Gentiles obedient– in mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God, so that from Jerusalem and round about to Illyricum I have fully preached the gospel of Christ.” (Romans 15:17-19).
What does it mean to fully preach the Gospel of Christ? The Apostle Paul tells us that it was accomplished in both word (preaching) and deed (signs and wonders). There is so much more to the preaching of the Gospel than just words. In First Corinthians 2:4, Paul declared, “And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power.” Over and over in the New Testament, we are told that the preaching of the Gospel was to be accompanied with a demonstration of the power of the Holy Spirit. Why? “For the kingdom of God is not in word but in power.” (1 Corinthians 4:20).
For too long, Christians in North America have been blinded to the power of the Gospel of the Kingdom because they have been handed down a powerless form of the Gospel. “But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will…have a form of godliness but deny its power. And from such people turn away.” (2 Timothy 3:1-5).
God never intended the Gospel to be words only. Consider the example that the Lord Jesus gave for us in His own ministry. “And Jesus went about all Galilee, TEACHING in their synagogues, PREACHING the gospel of the kingdom, and HEALING all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease among the people.” (Matthew 4:23). The ministry of Jesus consisted of teaching God’s Word, preaching the Gospel, and healing all sicknesses and diseases. See here also: “Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, TEACHING in their synagogues, PREACHING the gospel of the kingdom, and HEALING every sickness and every disease among the people.” (Matthew 9:35). Teaching, preaching and healing.
This is the very same commission that Jesus gave to His disciples! “And when He had called His twelve disciples to Him, He gave them power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease…And as you go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give.” (Matthew 10:1,7-8). The message they were to preach was simple: The Kingdom of God is at hand. What does it mean that God’s Kingdom is at hand? It is near. It is here. And what is the Kingdom of God? Healing the sick, cleansing the lepers, raising the dead, casting out demons—freely we have received, we are to freely give.
In Mark 16:15-18, Jesus gave us the Great Commission: “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues…they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.” It is time. And what will happen as we are obedient to the call of God upon our lives? Well, look at what happened in the lives of the early disciples. “And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs. Amen.” (Mark 16:20). This is the power of the Gospel of the Kingdom. Let’s go!
Pastor Chris Jordan