FEAR NOT: FOR.
BEHOLD, I BRING YOU GOOD TIDINGS OF GREAT JOY, WHICH SHALL BE TO
thousand years ago, angels announced the birth of Jesus with
the words above. Have you ever asked yourself what these
words really mean? How can the birth of Jesus two thousand
years ago be good tidings of great joy to ALL PEOPLE when
the majority of mankind presently, as well as in the past
have never even heard of the savior?
his followers to go forth and preach the gospel. "Gospel" is
a word that means "good news", but strangely, the 'gospel'
which most professed Christians preach can only mean bad
news for the majority of mankind. Not only are we born into
a world full of hate, violence, prejudice, evil, and death,
but we are also taught that at the end of the struggle, most
will face an even greater woe; that of eternal torment in a
hell of fire.
THE WAGES OF SIN
DEATH - NOT ETERNAL TORMENT
bad news my friend, is not hell. Contrary to popular
religious thought in our day, the idea that God will
mercilessly torment millions for all eternity is nowhere
to be found in the Bible. No, the bad news is that you
are dying. You may look in the mirror today full of
youth and beauty, but as sure as the sun rises and sets, you
are fading; gradually, ever so slightly, everyday. Not only
this, but everyone, and everything you love, or ever have
loved is also dying. Your material possessions will not last
no matter how much care you take to preserve them. They will
eventually fall apart. But much worse, we cannot even hold
on to those we love. One day they are with us, laughing,
sharing our joys and sorrows, and the next they are cruelly
taken from us.
Contrary to popular
religious thought in our day, the idea that God will
mercilessly torment millions for all eternity is
nowhere to be found in the Bible.
You can shut
your eyes to it, but one day we must face the reality that
someday we will die and leave behind everything and everyone
we loved. When death calls, we must forfeit everything we
knew life to be.
Why are we
dying? Why do we and those we love so much have to die?
the first man and woman, Adam and Eve, to live forever in
joy, peace, and happiness. Man was not made to die.
God intended then, and indeed still does intend for men and
women to live forever, but God also gave them a choice. God
gave Adam and Eve the choice between life his way, the
perfect law of love, or the way of Satan; lust, selfishness,
and greed. God instructed the man and woman about what he
expected of them, and warned them clearly about what would
happen if they chose not to obey:
And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of
the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the
knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in
the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die. Gen
first human couple disobeyed their creator and the death
sentence was passed upon them. The man and woman were forced
from the garden of Eden away from the tree of life which God
had lovingly provided to sustain their existence. From that
moment they began to fade, and eventually died.
probably heard it said that "we are all God's children". It
may come as a shock for you to learn that we really aren't.
God directly created the first man and woman, and as such
they were his children. You and I however were not created
so. Every man, woman, and child on this planet are descended
from that first fallen couple in the Garden of Eden. God is
ultimately the author of life, but we are children of Adam
and Eve. Like a disease we have inherited their fallen
nature, as well as their death sentence.
entire human race sprang from our fallen original parents,
God has reckoned the entire race as dead. It would seem as
though we are a race of men and women which are born only to
imagine for a moment that you were just diagnosed with a
very serious terminal illness. You know you are going
to die, and all seems bleak and hopeless. Then imagine
that you meet a doctor who tells you that he can not only
cure your illness, but will do so free of charge provided
you follow his instructions and agree to remain in his care.
Would it not be the utmost folly to reject such an offer?
has provided the cure for death and opened the way to
eternal life. Would it not be foolish to not take a
moment and learn of God's offer of eternal life?
The Good News - FOR GOD SO LOVED...
God LOVED. God loved us so much that he has already provided
for our salvation and recovery from death. The fall of Adam
and Eve in the garden of Eden did not take God by surprise.
With the death sentence God also foretold that someday the
seed of the woman (Jesus Christ) would crush Satan and
release mankind from the bondage of death and corruption:
And I will
put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and
hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel. Gen
thousand years Adam's children had been dying, when an
announcement was made by angels to lowly shepherds:
Behold, I bring you good
tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is
born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the
The birth of
Jesus in Bethlehem marked the fulfillment of the promise
that one day God would send a savior to break mankind's
bondage to sin and death. Because Adam had sold his entire
race of children into sin corruption and death, mankind was
in need of a ransom.
Because the sin of one
man, Adam, sold our race into bondage, God provided
one perfect life in his own Son to buy back for us
what Adam had lost.
God sent his
own beloved Son into the world to be a ransom for Adam's
fallen race of children. Because the sin of one man, Adam,
sold our race into bondage, God provided one perfect life in
his own Son to buy back for us what Adam had lost. No child
of Adam could ever redeem the race; God required a perfect
human life as a corresponding price for that which Adam had
Jesus was conceived of the Holy Sprit, and born of a virgin,
he was, for the first time since Adam, a true son of God;
one who could live a life of perfect obedience to his God
and Father, and thus provide the corresponding ransom price
for that which Adam had lost.
The Savior, our
ransom and our redeemer, was born.
Kingdom Is Announced
the age of 30, Jesus began his public ministry with this
Repent, for the kingdom of heaven
is at hand. Matt 4:17
ever stopped to consider what this kingdom was? The Old
Testament prophets had all foretold of this glorious kingdom
age which the savior would usher in when he finally came.
Isaiah described the kingdom with these words:
Then the eyes of the blind shall
be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. Then shall
the lame man leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing: for
in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert.
And the parched ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land
springs of water: in the habitation of dragons, where each lay,
shall be grass with reeds and rushes. Isa 35:5-7
And in that day shall the deaf
hear the words of the book, and the eyes of the blind shall see out
of obscurity, and out of darkness. The meek also shall increase
their joy in the LORD, and the poor among men shall rejoice in the
Holy One of Israel. Isa 29:18-19
was to be God's instrument in restoring mankind and the
earth to the perfection which Adam and Eve had lost. Jesus
was the the divinely appointed king of the kingdom. The
kingdom was first offered to God's chosen people, the Jewish
nation. Jesus was sent to preach exclusively to them and
offer them first the Kingdom which was to spread to the
uttermost parts of the earth.
Jewish nation, however, was not prepared for Christ's
message. The leaders of the Jewish nation expected the
messiah to bring them freedom from political oppression, but
they did not expect the message of moral obligation to God's
sovereignty which Jesus preached. The leaders resented
Jesus' moral demands which he made on them as a condition
for inheriting the kingdom. They felt that by simply being
Jews, they had a right to that kingdom, but Jesus taught
Resentment, jealousy and pride
got the best of the Jewish national leaders. When Jesus was
only 33 years old they had him put to death by crucifixion.
They had rejected God's king.
But like the
sin of our first parents, Israel's rejection of their King
and Messiah did not catch God by surprise. In fact, Jesus
taught his faithful disciples that his rejection must occur
to fulfill prophecy. As foretold by the prophet Isaiah:
He is despised and rejected of
men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it
were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did
esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was
wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities:
the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we
are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every
one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us
all. Isa 53:3-6
put to death. Having lived a perfect life he died to provide
the ransom for the human race and to satisfy God's demand
for divine justice. He died to buy back life for every
man, woman, and child of the human race.
however could not hold Jesus in the tomb. Having lived a
perfect life, satisfying the demands of divine justice, and
tasting death for every man, the grave no longer had any
legal right to hold him. After three days and nights in the
tomb God resurrected him. But upon his resurrection Jesus
was no longer a mortal man subject to die once more.
Instead he came forth glorious and immortal; the firstborn
from the dead into immortality, never to die again.
The Kingdom nOW
But what was to become of the promised
earthly kingdom which had been prophesied; the time in which
God would restore both mankind and the balance of nature to
perfection? Because the Jewish leaders refused to submit to
Christ's authority, Jesus told them:
Therefore say I
unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from
you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits
thereof. Matt 21:43
But he also
told his faithful apostles shortly before he died:
Ye are they which
have continued with me in my temptations. And I
appoint unto you a kingdom, as my Father hath
appointed unto me; That ye may eat and drink at my
table in my kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the
twelve tribes of Israel. Luke 22:28-30
to inherit the coming kingdom was taken from Israel and
given to those who would willingly sacrifice their own self
righteousness and submit to Christ's righteousness. The
entire work of the present Gospel age has been to seek out
and instruct those who are to obtain the Kingdom at Christ's
return; that is, obtain the right to reign with Christ. The
"church" was instituted for this very purpose. Those who
hear of Christ in our present age and exercise faith in his
ransom sacrifice for us, are called upon to inherit his
kingdom; to obtain a position of co-rulership with Christ
when he sets up his earthly kingdom at his return. Much of
the New Testament has been written for our instruction in
order to prepare for that time.
The entire work of the
present Gospel age has been to seek out and instruct
those who are to obtain the Kingdom at Christ's
return; that is, obtain the right to reign with
its most basic sense means to not lose one's life; to be
rescued from sin death, and the grave and brought back to a
state of perfection which Adam and Eve lost. Because of
Christ's sacrifice on our behalf, he holds out salvation to
anyone who will ultimately cry out to him in repentance for
mercy, accepting him as Lord and Savior.
present work of the Gospel age holds out an even greater
hope. We are called to be co-heirs in Christ's kingdom and
to obtain a resurrection to immortality. This goes beyond
salvation and is offered to those who are willing to live a
life of self-sacrifice and walk in the "narrow way". Jesus
Strive to enter
in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you,
will seek to enter in, and shall not be able. Luke
And as the
apostle Paul stated:
The Spirit itself
beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the
children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs
of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be
that we suffer with him, that we may be also
glorified together. Rom 8:16-17
Earth's Night Of Sin To Terminate
In A Morning Of Joy
is a serious error of modern Christendom to teach that the
opportunity for salvation terminates with the end of the
current age. It is equally incorrect to teach that the fate
of every human being is sealed at the moment of their death.
It may come as a shock to many, but God is not presently
trying to "save the world", nor has he yet been at any time
in the past.
that fateful day when our original parents partook of that
forbidden tree and plunged all of humanity into despair and
ruin, God has been working out his plan of redemption to
recover mankind from sin and the grave. God began by
choosing one man (Abraham), and then one nation (Israel)
through which the promised savior would come.
coming of the savior and his ascension to heaven, God has
been choosing only those who will reign in the Kingdom at
his second advent. At no time in the past has the message of
"good tidings of great joy" been preached to all. This work
remains for a future time. As the apostle Paul stated:
For there is one
God, and one mediator between God and men, the man
Christ Jesus; Who gave himself a ransom for ALL,
to be testified in due time. 1 Tim 2:5-6
popular belief, the second coming of Jesus does not mark the
end of the world. It does however mark the end of the
current age in which sin and death have reigned for so long.
Jesus is coming back to take his bride (those who by a life
of self sacrifice and obedience have earned the right to
reign with him) and set up his kingdom. He and his
faithful bride will reign over and judge all humanity. It is
during this period that that the truth of the ransom, and
the 'good tidings of great joy' will be preached to all .
The "good news" is that
because of the work of our Savior, under his reign,
every fallen child of Adam will eventually regain
the fellowship with God and the perfection which
Adam lost for them.
news" is that because of the work of our Savior, under his
reign, every fallen child of Adam will eventually regain the
fellowship with God and the perfection which Adam lost for
them. By the merit of Christ's ransom in which he bought
back life for humanity, even those who have died in
ignorance will be resurrected from the grave; and by
judgment and instruction, ultimately all will be saved and
come to life in Jesus Christ. It is during these glorious
ages to come that God then goes about the business of
converting the world. Isaiah tells us:
The earth shall
be full of the knowledge of the LORD, as the waters
cover the sea. Isa 11:9
must make no mistake about the seriousness of sin and our
attitude toward the message of the Gospel now. Sin has
consequences in this life, and in the age to come. We
will all be made to give an account of our lives to God and
will be judged according to those choices we have made in
this lifetime. Those who hear of these Glad Tidings
now, yet reject the message will be much more accountable to
God and judged more severely, having spurned the message
about Jesus Christ and the offer for eternal life. God
is certainly merciful and loving, but we must understand
clearly that those who treat God's offer of eternal life
with contempt do so at their own peril.
To hear the
life giving message about Jesus Christ and his kingdom is a
tremendous privilege. God calls people to attain to
immortality as Jesus himself has. God calls us to a
life of righteousness and obedience and to aspire to be
co-heirs and co-rulers in his kingdom. Can you think
of anything more valuable? Can you think of any
prospect more thrilling? What in this life could ever
be worth gaining if we lose such an opportunity? My friend,
God wishes to bestow upon you the greatest gift he could
ever give; do not spurn His love.
to give every man, woman, and child eternal life. Many in
this lifetime have never even heard of God's gift of eternal
life. As we noted, Jesus Christ, by his death and
resurrection has secured this life for all of Adam's
children. However, the choice on the part of each
still remains; If anyone willfully rejects God's gift
after having received a resurrection from the dead, and a
full knowledge of the truth, they will be judged accordingly
being thus excluded from the blessings of the coming
glorious age of God's righteousness, the age of the ages.
Hear the words of Jesus:
For what will it profit
a man, if he gains the whole world and forfeits his
life? Or what shall a man give in return for his
life? Matt 16:26
A TRULY JOYOUS MESSAGE
tidings of great joy? Absolutely! Not only has God provided
the ransom which will allow every man to be released from
death and the grave, but in buying back what Adam lost he
has also guaranteed that all things - even you -
whether by His grace and mercy, or His judgments will be
reconciled back to himself.
Too good to
be true? Not if you believe in a God who loves his creation
infinitely more than a parent loves their own children.
a moment to pause and consider what great things the Lord
has done for us.
message has stirred your heart to believe this message of
glad tidings, why not pray to God and ask forgiveness for
your sins, trust in the work which Jesus has accomplished in
our behalf, then diligently seek out His will for your life.
If you have any questions we would like to be of help in any
way possible. Please let us know.
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