Good News for Everyone
The Risen Jesus declared, “All authority in heaven and on earth is given to me, therefore, go and make disciples of all nations!” As the exalted Sovereign over all things, he dispatched his disciples to announce his Lordship and the Good News of salvation to the “uttermost parts of the Earth.” The era of salvation commenced with his death and resurrection; therefore, the offer of reconciliation must be heard on the Earth until the moment the Son of Man arrives “on the clouds of Heaven.”
God exalted Jesus to the Messianic Throne where he now reigns over all things, just as promised in the Scriptures: “I will give you the nations for your inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for your possession” – (Psalm 2:8).
|[Photo by James Douglas on Unsplash]|
Because of his enthronement, he now empowers his Assembly to preach his Good News to the entire planet. “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judaea and Samaria, and to the uttermost parts of the Earth” – (Acts 2:8).
For this reason, the entire creation has proclaimed him “worthy” to rule over the Earth, indeed, over the entire Cosmos: “You are worthy to take the Scroll and open its seals BECAUSE you were slain and purchased for God with your blood men from every tribe, tongue, people, and nation, and made them a kingdom, priests for our God, and they reign upon the Earth” - (Revelation 5:9-10).
Because of his death “for our sins,” God raised him from the dead and “highly exalted him, granting him the name that is above every name,” – JESUS – The one who will reign on the Davidic Throne forevermore. He is now the “King of kings” and the “Ruler of the kings of the Earth.” The nations now belong to him, and no longer to the Devil – (1 Corinthians 15:1-6, Philippians 2:6-11, Revelation 1:6-8,3:21, 5:5-14).
In this man from Nazareth, the one God who created all men has “spoken” definitively and with great finality, especially in his death and resurrection. The words given previously “in the prophets” were true enough, but partial and preparatory. It is His Son alone who “achieved the purification of sin,” therefore, he now sits “at the right hand of the Majesty on High places” as the Great High Priest who mediates life for his people. Only Jesus attained the salvation that was foretold by the “prophets” – (Hebrews 1:1-4).
The “righteousness of God” is now available to all men “through the faith of Jesus Christ for all who believe, FOR THERE IS NO DISTINCTION.” The offer of salvation is open to all men because of the faithful obedience of Jesus, the one who “died for our sins” – (Romans 3:21-22).
Sin is the Great Leveler that previously condemned every man, woman, and child to bondage, decay, hopelessness, and death, both “Jews and Greeks.” In the end, neither ethnicity nor economic status made any difference. Death awaited one and all.
Because of his sacrificial death, anyone may receive right standing before God, and on the same basis, whether Jew or Gentile, male or female, poor or rich; namely, “from the FAITH OF JESUS CHRIST.” In response to his faithful act, the penitent man or woman is acquitted by God of the sentence of death by placing faith in Jesus and what God accomplished in him.
In his declaration to the churches of Rome, the Apostle Paul employed his RADICAL MONOTHEISM to make the point. The one God of Israel is the God of both Jews and Gentiles. No man or woman is advantaged or disadvantaged before Him because of biological descent or national origin:
- “Or is He the God of Jews only? Is He not the God of the Gentiles also? Yes, of the Gentiles also, if so be that GOD IS ONE, and he will justify the circumcision from faith, and the uncircumcision through the faith” – (Romans 3:29-30).
THE NEW PEOPLE OF GOD
Ever since His Son “achieved the purification of sins,” God has been CREATING A NEW COMMUNITY composed of men and women from every nation who have been redeemed by the blood of Jesus.
- “But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God's own possession, that you may show forth the excellencies of Him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light” - (1 Peter 2:9).
In the preceding passage, each noun is in the SINGULAR number – one priesthood, one nation, one people. Regardless of their nationality, Jesus is forming men and women into one new humanity conformed to his image.
Every person who places faith in Jesus and submits to his rule becomes a member of this community and a “priest” in His Kingdom tasked with reflecting the light of the Gospel in a very dark world – (Ephesians 2:15).
No nation, civilization, or political ideology can claim Jesus as its exclusive property. His announcement of salvation is a message of life for EVERY man, woman, and child on the planet, therefore, it transcends all national and cultural boundaries. His domain is a UNIVERSAL kingdom, and he and his priestly representatives proclaim one message to and for all humanity, including the nations of the Earth.
Since this Gospel is for everyone, in the truest sense, it is a universal faith. All men have sinned. Every man needs salvation and everlasting life. No one deserves it, but God graciously offers it to everyone “freely” throughout the Earth.
Finally, this salvation is offered on the same basis to each man - From the faith of Jesus Christ. All we can do is respond in faith to what God has achieved for us through the death and resurrection of His Son.