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What Is The Gospel Of The Kingdom? . . . Mobile Conference 2005

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Mobile Conference 2005 - Audio 1
http://bible-truths.com/audio/M05 GospelOfTheKingdom_p1.mp3
http://bible-truths.com/audio/M05 GospelOfTheKingdom_p2.mp3

                                                      What Is The Gospel Of The Kingdom? 

                                                                  The Image Of God

He is creating, not created - finished - done.
If God created (ed - past tense) man in His image, why oh why did he sin? Think about it, are we saying that the image of God is a sinning image? How could the very image of God, sin? Well thatís what they say, they say he (Adam) was perfect.

One day Copeland said, Adam was so glorified, so majestic, so spiritual that you couldnít see his body. That he glowed like a white star. He was so glorious you couldnít even see his body, thatís how glorious he was before he sinned. Well why did he sin? How could anything so God-like sin? Because he wasnít God-like at all!  He was as carnal as any slob who has ever drawn breath. Thatís why he sinned. 

So this is the plan of God, He is making children in His very own image. We are going to be like God. We are going to be Godís children. You know what children are like. So weíll be like God, if weíre going to be the children of God. Weíre going to be like Christ.  Christ is called God and we are going to be brothers and sisters. Weíre going to be sons of God.

                                                             UNDERSTANDING THE BOOK

If we donít understand that God never intended for the masses of humanity to understand this Bible, then we wonít understand this book. This is not a book written to be understood. Human intellect will not allow you to understand this book. You can learn a lot about it, where and how it was written, the culture, the history and you can memorize it. 
You can be like Jack Van Impe and I donít know he says heís memorized 25,000 verses or whatever. But he has not a clue as to what the gospel is, not a clue. I donít mean to pick on people. James Kennedy speaks Greek and Hebrew fluently and has not a clue as to what the gospel is. Iím serious, not a clue. You say, Ďoh well he doesnít have it quite down yet.í No, not a clue, he has not a clue. 

If you think God is going to torture most of humanity for all eternity, then you have not a clue as to what the gospel isÖ you have not a clue as to what Jesus Christ isÖ you have not a clue as to what God the Father is. Not a clue. You can not say in the same breath that God is love and God tortures most of humanity for all of eternity. You canít say that!  That is as opposite as God and Satan, to say that.  Yet this is fundamental Christianity... God is loveÖ God will torture most of humanity in real fire for all eternity. Itís insane! If you canít see that that is insane, if you just sit there and say, Ďwell I donít know Ray, it makes sense to me.í Then you will never understand this book. You just will never understand this book. 

This book was written so that nobody could understand it, until God picks somebody out and says I want you to understand this book and Iíll show you how to understand it. Thatís the only way. Heís got to pick you out and open up your mind or you will never understand this book.  This book is written in all kinds of symbolism, figurative language, types, figures, images, examples, analogies, parables, metaphors and people think all those things are literal. That is confusion. Thatís why the church is confused. Thatís why there are supposedly 3000 Christian denominations in the world, because they donít understand any of this stuff.

Jesus Christ said to His Apostles, to you it is given to understand, but to them it is not given to understand.

Mark 4:11  And he said unto them, Unto you is given the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all things are done in parables:
Mar 4:12  that seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand;

To you it is given, to them itís not given. Thereís you and thereís them and thatís just the way it is and the way it will be until the close of the age.

They are talking about worldwide revival. Rod Parsley was saying at the rate they are converting people, 250,000 a day, that in 12-14 more years the whole world will be Christianized, in just a matter of not too many years.  But Christ says when He returns will He find faith? Well thatĎs all Heíll find is faith, everywhere, in every human being. NO! No, He asks the question because He wonĎt find faith. There is not faith among millions, no, billions, we have to say billions now, there are 2 billion professing Christians.

                                                                           THE GOSPEL

Iím going to talk about what is the gospel of the kingdom of God? Gospel means good news. But good news about what? What is the good news?

Okay the single most pat and concise answer you will get in all Christianity, it is the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Iím not saying there is no truth to that being part of the gospel, but let me ask you this, in reference to that. Jesus Christ came preaching the gospel, right, did He come preaching His death, burial and resurrection? I mean throughout His whole ministry. What Iím saying is Jesus Christ came preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, did He go around Judea and Galilee teaching His death, burial and resurrection? Can you show me that any where in the Gospels, that He taught that? No. So what is the gospel? He taught the gospel, He preached the gospel, but He did not go around saying Iím going to die, youíre going to kill Me and Iím going to come back to life and then Iím going to save you. 

In some places it talks about Ďthe gospelí and in some places Ďthe gospel of the kingdom.í But then we have another question, what is the kingdom? 

The reason He went up into the mount, on what they call ĎThe Sermon On The Mount,í the one express purpose was that is where He was going to actually choose out the twelve. You read that in Lukeís account.
Hereís the point I want to make, when you read all the verses that talk about the preaching of the gospel, it doesnít tell you what it is.  Jesus came preaching the gospel of the kingdom.

Mat 9:35  And Jesus went about all the cities and the villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom,

What gospel?  What kingdom?  It doesnít say.  Mark says, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God.

Mark 1:14  And after John was delivered up, Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of the kingdom of God,
v. 15  and saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God draws near  Repent, and believe the gospel.

Repent and believe the gospelÖ okay I believe it, but what is it? 

Mark 13:10  And the gospel must first be published to all nations.

Luke 9:6  So they departed and went through the towns, preaching the gospel and healing everywhere.

He went through all the towns preaching the gospelÖ what gospel? 

Luke 4:18  "The Spirit of the Lord is on Me; because of this He has anointed Me to proclaim the Gospel to the poor.

The poor have the gospel preached to them, well thatís nice, but what did they hear that the rich didnít? 

Rom 1:1  Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, a called apostle, separated to the gospel of God

Paul was separated until the gospel of God, what was it? 

Rom 1:16  For I am not ashamed of the gospel: for it is the power of God unto salvationÖ

Well the gospel is the power of salvation. Well thatís good, but what is it? 

1Cor 1:17  For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospelÖ

Paul said Christ didnít call me to baptize, but to preach the gospel. I know what baptism is, but what is the gospel?

1Cor 9:18 Ö that I abuse not my power in the gospel.

Here Paul says I abuse not my power in the gospel. 

2Cor 4:3  But if our gospel is hid, it is hid to those being lost,

It says the gospel is hid from those who are lost. Maybe it is hid from some of us that think we are saved.
Paul said he was going to make known the mystery of the gospel. 

Eph 6:19  And pray for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel,

Wow, how are we going to know the mystery of the gospel, if we donít know what the gospel is?
We have fellowship in the gospel.

Php 1:5  for your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now;

We are doing that today, but maybe you donít exactly see how it is that we are having fellowship in the gospel. 

It talks about the hope of the gospel (Col 1:23)
The truth of the gospel (Gal.2:5, 14; Eph.1:13; Col.1:5)
The glorious gospel of the blessed God (1Tim. 1:11)
Vengeance is on those that obey not the gospel (2Th 1:08)

You have to obey the gospel. Well how do you obey the gospel, if you donít even know what it is? You got to know what it is, if youíre going to obey it, right. 
In the book of Revelation we read;

Rev 1:3  Blessed is he that reads, and they that hear the words of the prophecy, and keep the things that are written therein:

How are you going to keep the sayings of the prophecy in Revelation, if you donít even know what it means. Well God chooses people out in every generation to learn these things and hopefully we will learn some of these things today.

We read in Gen. 12 about God making promises to Abraham.

Gen. 12:1  And Jehovah said to Abram, Go out of your country, and from your kindred, and from your father's house into a land that I will show you.
v. 2  And I will make you a great nation. And I will bless you and make your name great. And you shall be a blessing.
v. 3  And I will bless those that bless you and curse the one who curses you. And in you shall all families of the earth be blessed.

Paul says in Gal.3 that those promises in Gen 12, 18 and 22 was the gospel.  That those promises was the gospel, that is what Paul says.

Gal 3:8  And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel to Abraham beforehand, saying, "In you all the nations shall be blessed."

In Revelation 14 we read that an angel or messenger is going to preach the eonian gospel to the whole world.

Rev 14:6  And I saw another angel (messenger) flying in mid-heaven, having the everlasting (eonian) gospel to preach to those dwelling on the earth, even to every nation and kindred and tongue and people,

So what is it? Itís called the gospel of God, the gospel of Christ, Paul called it my gospel and itís our gospel and itís called the gospel of our salvation. So it behooves us to know what the gospel is and to obey it. Like it says in Eph. 2 it is the gospel of our salvation. Itís an important thing.

Eph 1:13  In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation;

                                                             THERE ARE TWO SEEDS

Now letís go back and get a little more prospective on everything.
There are two seeds on the earth. In Genesis 3 we read about the seed of the serpent (the seed of Satan) and the seed of the woman, there are the two seeds.

Now we are going to see the progression of the gospel. In Genesis 3;

Gen 3:15  And I will put enmity between you (serpent) and the woman, and between your seed and her Seed; He (it) will bruise your head, and you shall bruise His heel.

This is talking about something that is going to come and bruise - the word is actually closer to crush than bruise, in both places.

So we have this promise of a Seed back in the garden, the Seed of the woman. Now we come a few generations down the road and God says to Abraham.

Gen 22:18  And in your Seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed, because you have obeyed My voice.

We want to follow the progression of the seed, so look at Galatians 3.

Gal 3:16  And to Abraham and to his Seed the promises were spoken. It does not say, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, "And to your Seed," which is Christ.

So we see just read that in Genesis 22, Iím going to bless all nations, in your seed. 
Notice ďAnd to your SeedĒ and He said not and to seeds, with a Ďsí plural ďas of many;  but as of one, to your Seed (singular - one Seed), which is Christ.Ē

There it is. So we were promised the Seed through Eve and God said through Abraham Iím going to bless your Seed and then we come to the New Testament and it says Jesus Christ is that Seed. What was taught back there was the gospel.

That was the gospel in chapter 3 of Genesis  That was the gospel in chapter 12, 18 and 22 of Genesis, to Abraham. Now we come down and we say that this Seed is Christ. So itís going to come about through Christ, the one Seed. Jesus is the Seed of Abraham - the Seed of the woman, the one Seed by which the whole world is going to be blessed. Paul tells us this is the beginning of the gospel.

Now we have the two seeds. Notice this, here in 1 Peter are the two Seeds.

1Peter 4:17  For the time is come for judgment to begin at the house of God: and if it begin first at us, what shall be the end of them that obey not the gospel of God?

Youíve got the seed of the Serpent and youíve got the Seed of the woman. The seed of the woman, through the Seed of Christ, is going to obey the gospel. How are they going to come into obedience, by the way? What is going to bring about this obedience?  Judgment! ďfor judgment to begin at the house of GodĒ thatís how you come into obedience to the gospel.

Paul says what is going to happen to those who donít obey the gospel of God. We have that answered in 2 Thes. 1:8, with Godís fiery wrath and indignation is going to be poured out on those, who what? Do not obey the gospel of Jesus Christ.

2Thes 1:8  in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Keep everything in mind now.  We have a good message - a good news message through God to Eve, there is coming a Seed in you and itís going to do battle against the seed of the serpent. Then God tells Abraham Iím going to bless all nations through your Seed.  Paul says Jesus Christ is that Seed. But the two Seeds keep going, the two Seeds are here until the end of time. Those that obey the gospel - those that do not obey the gospel, you are of your father the devil.  If you were Abrahamís children, the seed of the woman, you wouldnít do that. 

The gospel has to do with good news about a Seed coming through the woman, being passed on through the genealogy of Abraham, all the way down to Jesus Christ being born of the virgin Mary in Bethlehem of Judea. Heís the Seed. 

But now we donít hear about the gospel of the one Seed. Jesus Christ didnít call His gospel Ďthe gospel of the one Seed,í did He? No, He called it the gospel of what? The kingdom of God. He preached the gospel of the kingdom of God. In Isaiah 52 we learn about this gospel.

Isa 52:7  How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of him who brings good tiding (good news - gospel), that publishes peace; that brings good tidings of good, that publishes salvation; who says to Zion, Your God reigns!

That all sounds like pretty good stuff. We have good tidings, we have peace, we have good tidings of good things, publishing - broad casting about - proclaiming salvation and unto Zion, God reigns. This is the good news, this is the gospel! Jesus Christ preached the gospel, Jesus Christ is the Seed, right.

The Jews knew that this Scripture was in Isaiah. They knew that a Messiah was going to come and bring good news and publish peace, bring tidings of good things, proclaim salvation and rule out of Zion. Jesus Christ said He was that Messiah. 

But then He threw them a curve, near the end of His ministry. You know they thought and were all excitedÖ you know those people who were waving palm fronds and Ďsinging Hosanna in the highest,í when Christ was coming into Jerusalem. Why were they so excited? They thought He was the King, He was the Messiah. He was the one that was going to bring about this in Isaiah, He is going to reign. Then a few hours later, well a little more than a few hours, but after Passover evening, they were beating Him, spitting on Him, mocking Him and He doesnít fight back. How is He going to set up the kingdom? He can walk on water, He can feed 5000 with 2 fishes, He can heal the sick and He can raise the dead, so what is He doing? They are making a mockery out of our king! He doesnít look like Heís a king at all. When is He going to call down fire out of heaven and destroy all these Roman soldiers and set up the kingdom? Heís not.

They said are you a king?  He said, you say I am;

John 18:36  Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world.

Itís not of this cosmos, not in this system, not in this particular society or His servants would fight and He would take over. So everybody lost confidence. Some of the same ones that were singing Hosanna, were saying crucify Him, Heís nothing but a phony. They mocked Him on the cross, ĎHe can save others but He canít save Himself, Heís a phony.í 

                              THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN

So Jesus Christ preached the gospel of the kingdom. What is the kingdom? It doesnít seem like itís this kingdom back here in Isaiah 52, where He is going to reign from Zion. They knew where Zion was, itís in Jerusalem. If thatís not the kingdom and Christ is preaching the gospel of the kingdom, what kingdom is He preaching about? If itís not this one, what kingdom is He preaching about? Well there is another kingdom or there is some other facets of this kingdom that is not being revealed here. 

So I donít even know what the Protestants and the Catholics teaching is... they teach that the kingdom is something in your heart and then you go to heaven, maybe thatís the kingdom. I donít know exactly what they think or believe the kingdom is. Itís just kind of God in your heart or something. Thatís not what the gospel of the kingdom is. 

Jesus gave Peter the keys to the kingdom. 

Mat 4:17 ÖRepent! For the kingdom of Heaven is at hand.

If you were there in Jerusalem and you heard a man come up and say, repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand, would you have repented? Would you have known what he meant by the kingdom of heaven? Would you say, Ďwhat are you talking about?í So did everybody where Christ went, did they repent? No. Some repented at the baptism of John, but you donít find all these people repenting before Christ. The few examples were when somebody came up and they really wanted to follow this man, like the rich manÖ He said to him, you go a sell everything you have and give to the poor (Matt. 19:21). He said Iím not paying that steep a price. 

Christ did not convert one man during His whole ministry, not one, you all know that right? He never converted a single human being.
People will send me emailsÖ ĎHow many people have you converted Ray?í I say none, how many have you converted? Only God can convert somebody. Jesus Christ did not convert a single man. 

The last evening of the Passover He said to Peter, when you are converted. Was he converted at that evening of the Passover? No. He said youíll all forsake Me. Peter said, I wonít forsake You Lord, maybe all the rest will, but not me (Matt. 26:33). He said, hush your mouth Peter, the cock wonít crow till you deny Me 3 times, this night. He said youíll all forsake Me. Did they all forsake Him? Did Peter deny Him 3 times and curse that same night? Yes he did. Why? Peter wasnít converted thatís why, he was not converted. 

                              PARABLES ABOUT THE KINGDOM

Matt. 13:11  ÖUnto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heavenÖ

What are the mysteries of the kingdom? But you donít even know what the kingdom is. Even the kingdom is a mystery. Well Iíll tell you what the kingdom is. The kingdom of God is like a man sowing seed.

Matt. 13:3  Then He spoke many things to them in parables, saying: "Behold, a sower went out to sow.

Now do you know what it is? Of course it is also like a mustard seed and itís also like a treasure.

Matt. 13:31  Another parable He put forth to them, saying: "The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field,
v. 32  which indeed is the least of all the seeds; but when it is grown it is greater than the herbs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and nest in its branches."
And itís also like a treasure.

Mat 13:44  "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and hid; and for joy over it he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.

Is a mustard seed a treasure? Well theyíre both the kingdom of God, a treasure and a mustard seed, theyíre both the kingdom God. That what it says itís in the book. The kingdom of God is like a merchant man. Oh really, how is that?

Mat 13:45  "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant seeking beautiful pearls,
v. 46  who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had and bought it.

The kingdom of God is like a net that got cast into the sea. Then you pull in the net and you separate the fish.

Mat 13:47  "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a dragnet that was cast into the sea and gathered some of every kind,
v. 48  which, when it was full, they drew to shore; and they sat down and gathered the good into vessels, but threw the bad away.

Thatís the kingdom of God. Oh okay itís like fishing with a net, separating and cleaning fish, but I hate cleaning fish. The kingdom of God is like a householder. 

Mat 13:52  Then He said to them, "Therefore every scribe instructed concerning the kingdom of heaven is like a householder who brings out of his treasure things new and old."

The kingdom of God is like a king with his servants. He takes his servants and tells them what to do, some he gives talents to them and he will increase the talents.

Mat 25:14  "For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them.
v. 15  And to one he gave five talents, to another two, and to another one, to each according to his own ability; and immediately he went on a journey.
Thatís what the kingdom is. Now do you know what it is? The kingdom of God is like a man with his laborers in the vineyard, like people going to work in the fields. Some come early in the morning, some come late in the afternoon  The ones that come late in the afternoon get paid as much as the ones that come in the morning. Thatís the kingdom of God. Now you know what it is, right?

Mat 20:1  For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire laborers for his vineyard.
v. 8  "So when evening had come, the owner of the vineyard said to his steward, "Call the laborers and give them their wages, beginning with the last to the first.'

Thatís what the kingdom of God is, like laborers in the vineyard, laborers out in the field. Thatís what the kingdom of God is. Did you get that? No, not quite? Alright try this one. The kingdom of God is like a king who is going to have a big wedding feast for his son. He bids all these people to come and some of them have excuses why they canít come. So then he says go out in the highways and by-ways and just bring in strangers and they all came to the wedding feast. Of course even then there is one and guess what? He didnít have a wedding garment on. He says how can you show up here without a wedding garment? Throw him out.

Mat 22:2  "The kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who arranged a marriage for his son,
v. 3  and sent out his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding; and they were not willing to come.
Thatís what the kingdom of God is, like a wedding feast, where some donít show up and others came and even one of those didnít have a garment. Thatís what the kingdom of God is. The kingdom of God is like 10 virgins, 5 are wise and 5 are foolish. Thatís what the kingdom of God is like wise and foolish virgins. Now you got it, right?

Mat 25:1  Then the kingdom of heaven shall be likened to ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom.
v. 2  Now five of them were wise, and five were foolish.

The kingdom of God is like a king who goes on a far away journey. Thatís what the kingdom of God is like and then he returns with the kingdom.

Mat 25:14  "For the kingdom of heaven is like a man traveling to a far country, who called his own servants and delivered his goods to them.
v. 19  After a long time the lord of those servants came and settled accounts with them.

Yeah that is what the kingdom is, but what is this kingdom he returns with?  Well thatís what we are trying to answer. But this is good news though. All of this with the fishÖ the fieldÖ the seedÖ itís all good news. But what is it? 

Mat 6:33  But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

Okay we know what righteousness is, thatís doing right, doing good. So do goodÖ but thatís a separate thing, you seek the kingdom and His righteousness. Okay whatís the kingdom? It doesnít say the kingdom Ďofí righteousness, but the kingdom Ďandí His righteousness. The kingdom is more than just righteousness, but what is it? 

Now I donít think I will blow too many of you away if I was to suggest to you that in the parable of where the king went to receive a kingdomÖ that the king was Jesus Christ. Who is going to reign in Zion, according to Isaiah. 

Isa 52:7  How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of him who brings good tidings, making peace heard; who brings good news, making salvation heard; who says to Zion, Your God reigns!

The Lord is going to reign in Zion. He is going to bless the whole world, all the nationsÖ the Seed. Who is the Seed? Jesus Christ. Who is the king? Jesus Christ. He is going to receive unto Himself a kingdom. He is going to go some place and get a kingdom and then bring it back. What is it?

When we were members of WorldWide and I just marvel at how many of us were.  But we were taught, just like good old Protestants that a kingdom is a king and it has to have subjects to rule over and it has to have a territory of which the kingdom is and it has to have laws and regulations governing the kingdom. Thatís what a kingdom is and thatís what the kingdom of God is. 

But I donít think in any of these Scripture and I only gave you about 10 of 35-45 parables and the gospel appears in the New Testament 98 times. Most of those are in what we call the gospels and most of those in the book of Matthew. So Christ is the King and Heís going to get a kingdom and He's going to return.

Luke 19:12  Therefore He said, A certain nobleman went into a far country to receive a kingdom for himself, and to return.

Now we learned about the promise to the woman. The promise through Abrahamís seedÖ Christ is the Seed. But in between there it looks like God was going to work this thing out historically.

Exo 19:6  and ye (all Israel) shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation.

The difference between you and "ye" is, if I say Ďyouí Iím talking about one individual and when I say "ye" Iím talking about this whole group. Ye is plural. We lost that in our English and that was good, you and ye, now itís just you or yaíll.

There it is. He is going to bring in this kingdom. Heís going to bring in this blessing to the whole world, right. Youíre going to be a nation youíre going to be a kingdom of priests and a holy nation and itís going to conquer the nations, the Gentiles, the heathens and the pagans and fill the whole earth. But it never happened. He said ye shall be unto Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation. Did He lie? Did He fail? Or is this typical of something else? 

You see they never were a holy nation. God said, oh that there would be such a heart in them that they would obey Me from the heart. 

Deu 5:29  Oh that there were such a heart in them that they would fear Me and keep all My commandments always,

There was no such heart in them. Israel never obeyed from the heart. There were times when they had some peace, because they had a strong leader and he cracked the whip. People stayed in line for a while, but as a nation they were never holy, never.   

                        A KINGDOM OF PRIESTS - A HOLY NATION

But He said you will be unto Me a holy nation and He is talking to Israel. Now this has got to come about Israel has to become holy nation, a kingdom of priests. A kingdom implies kingship, royalty implies kingly, so if itís royal itís kingly. KingÖ priestsÖ holy nationÖ Israel. He said it, you shall be, thus says the Lord. It must happen. But it didnít happen. It never happened historically, never happened.

It was a type. The Levites are gone, the priests of Aaron are gone, the Tabernacle and in later times the Temple, itís all gone. They never became a holy nation. But the Christian world looks for it to happen yet, over there in Palestine. Some of the most carnal people that ever lived and they say they are going to be that holy nation, that itís going to happen through them. It will not happen through them. It will happen through Godís Israel though, make no mistake about that. 

This was a type, the whole Old Testament is a type. Even though the first 5 books are called the Torah - the Law, the whole Old Testament is also referred to as the Law. 

Now Hebrews 10, here weíre not talking about the 10 Commandments, we are talking about the Old Testament - the old covenant - the Law of Moses and everything that went with it, the Law.

Heb 10:1  For the Law which has a shadow of good things to comeÖ

There it is. There is your answer. God said Israel, all of you Israelites will be a kingdom of priests, a holy nation. Paul tells us that it was a type, a shadow of good things to come, not the very image of the things.

Heb 10:1  Ö not the very image of the things, appearing year by year with the same sacrifices, which they offered year by year continually, make the comers there unto perfect.

They could not be a holy nation, if youíre holy youíre perfect, they werenít. The writer of Hebrews says the Old Testament couldnít bring about this holy nation. It was a shadow of what? Better things to come. Now there is some more of the definition of gospel - good news - better - good things to come. He didnít do it through Israel. Hebrews says it was a shadow of something to come. But the priests were all gone, the priests and the Levites and even the nation. 

Nobody knows where the nation is anymore. There is a good chance that people who claim to be Jews, may not be Jews by race at all. But by religion, not by race. I mean there are a lot of Jews in Ethiopia, these are black African people and they are Jews. Ethiopia has a large population of black Jews and that history goes all the way back to the first century, that they have been Jews.
People have gotten sifted through the countries and the nations for 2000 years. So these people in New York, Chicago, Miami, LA and Jerusalem that claim to be Jews, some of them may have some Jewish blood in them, some may not. 

There are better things to come. There is an interesting Scripture in Galatians. If Israel is gone and the Levites are gone and the Aaron priesthood is gone and the Temple is gone and God is going to have a holy nation, where are they going to come from? Weíre in the book of Galatians, are the Galatians Jews or Gentiles? Galatians are Gentiles. 

Gal 3:29  And if you (Galatians - Gentiles) are Christ's, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise. 

How about that! Promised through the woman, through Abraham, through Isaac, through Jacob and then we have the one Seed arrives. Jesus Christ taught all these things. He said, if ye are Christ's, the one Seed and youíre Abraham's, now youíre into multiple seeds. Now go to the last chapter.

Gal 6:16  And as many as walk according to this rule, peace and mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God.

Is He talking about carnal Pharisees and the Scribes? No. Those that walk according to this rule, this new rule, this being an Israelite without being an Israelite, being circumcised without being circumcised, being a Jew while youíre a Gentile. Thatís what this is all about, this is something different. But itís going to fulfill that promise back in Exodus, He will make a royal nation, a royal priesthood and a holy nation out of who? Israel. What Israel? The Israel of God, not those who are circumcised in the flesh, no no no.

Rom 2:28  For he is not a Jew who is one outwardly, nor is circumcision that which is outward in the flesh;
v. 29  but he is a Jew who is one inwardly (he's writing to the Gentile Romans hereÖ) circumcision is that of the heart, in the Spirit (he is the spiritual Jew; the Roman - the Galatian - the PhilippianÖ) not in the letter; whose praise is not from men but from God.

So if you are in Christ, you are of the Seed of Abraham, even though there is no bloodline connection. Spirit is thicker than blood. 

                                   THE ISRAEL OF GOD

Letís see what Peter had to say about all this, in case you think Peter didnít understand some of this stuff. Actually Peter was pretty good with the Scriptures. You remember who Jesus Christ gave the keys of the kingdom of heaven to? Peter. Peter had it all worked out, he had a little problem there at Antioch, but after that he had it all worked out from then on.

1Peter 2:9  But ye (he is talking to Gentiles) are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own peculiar (special) peopleÖ

Does that sound a little bit like Exodus 19? I will make out of you a royal priesthood, a holy nation. Where do you think Peter got it? 

Exo 19:6  And ye shall be unto Me a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel.

A chosen generation... a royal means, kingly priesthood, a holy nation. A peculiar people, that comes out of about 3 different Greek words, the pronoun 'his' is in there and peculiar really means special. So what this is saying is, you are His - Godís precious people. Thatís pretty neat, you are His precious people, not the Israel of old, not the Israel that came down through the seed of the devil, that was who? The Scribes and the Pharisees and they personified it, the leadership of the church and the Temple system, personified the nation. Not that seed, the seed of the devil. You are the seed of Jesus Christ, you are of this Israel of God, like Paul talked about in Galatians.

Gal 6:16  And as many as walk according to this rule, peace and mercy be upon them and upon the Israel of God.

1Peter 2:9  Öso that you might speak of the praises of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;

So the kingdom of God is what? The Israel of God! Itís those who through the faith of AbrahamÖ that is the same faith that God gave to Abraham He gives to us, thatís the faith of Abraham. We become this peculiar, special people to God. 

Now get this. Here's what He said we are. He said I will have a nation and I will have a people and it didnít happen... but it was a type, a shadow of something that will happen. 

The writer of Hebrews tells us that there is an "Israel of God," those who are baptized in the Spirit, circumcised in the Spirit and they are now spiritual Israel - Jews. They are the real Jews, the ones that are converted in heart and mind and spirit. Then Peter comes right out and says, you are that royal family, that special people, that kingdom of priests, that holy nation, thatís what you are. 

So what is it? Itís the gospel of the kingdom. What is the kingdom? YOU - WE are the kingdom! How about that. We are the kingdom. Itís the gospel, the good news of the kingdom. When you are spiritually converted and you are holy and you are circumcised in spirit and mind and soul and heart you are a spiritual Jew. You are the one that He said back there, Iím going to make you a holy nation, Israel... but not that Israel, that was a type. That was a shadow, that was only going to be a nation of people living in a certain land. 

This kingdom is going to what? Bless all the nations. This is a big kingdom and itís a spiritual kingdom, because the more we do away with the flesh, the more spiritual we get. The more we die to the flesh, the more we grow to the spirit. 

So itís not as negative as it seems when you get old and decrepit like me. The flesh is dying, but hopefully the spirit is growing. Where as I use to be dead in my spirit and soar in my flesh, now Iím almost dead in my flesh and soaring in my spirit. Thatís good, thatís the way it should be. Do you see that in your life? You should see the flesh dying. Iím going to talk a little bit about that in the second part.

                                 HEAVEN OF THE HEAVENS

So what is the kingdom? We are the kingdom of God... we are the kingdom of the heavens. Where does God reside? In heaven. God resides in heaven, but it is not called the kingdom of heaven in the Greek, you can check Rotherham and all those, itís kingdom of the heavens, plural. We are the temple of God... God resides in His temple... God resides in heaven. We are the heaven in which God resides, where He dwells. But donít get to haughty, because the Scriptures say, not even all the heaven of the heavens can contain Him.

2Chron 6:18  ÖBehold, heaven and the heaven of heavens cannot contain You.  How much less this temple which I have built!

But never the less it is true, He does dwell in the heavens. But they canít even contain Him, Heís bigger than that. But He does dwell in His heavens, we are His heavens, we are His spiritual kingdom. But it does not yet appear what we shall be, we only have the earnest, down payment of His spirit.

Eph 1:14  which is an earnest of our inheritance, unto the redemption of God's own possession, unto the praise of His glory.

We have the down payment, but John says we will eventually see Him as He is, because we will be like Him. We will be like Jesus Christ!

1John 3:2  Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not appeared as yet what we will be. We know that when He appears, we will be like Him, because we will see Him just as He is.

So we are the kingdom of God. Christ is going to return with a kingdom... what does He return with?  What is the symbolism of how Christ returns? He returns on... what is He riding? A white horse. Is anybody with Him? An army! Are they walking? They are riding on white horses too!

Rev 19:14  And the armies in Heaven followed Him on white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.

What is that army? The kingdom of God... IT'S US! We are coming with Him, He is going to gather US up. Gather up what? His army, His kingdom! 

We still have all these parables though. We are the kingdom of God, so what are all these parbles?
The kingdom of God is likeÖ a merchant
The kingdom of God is likeÖ a seed
The kingdom of God is likeÖ a king that goes afar
The kingdom of God is likeÖ workers in a vineyard
LikeÖ likeÖ likeÖwhat is it like? 

Specifically we will see what the parables are all talking about, they are all talking about the same thing. Jesus Christ says, ďDo you not know this parable? And how then will you know all parables?Ē (Mark 4:13)

So does it mean if you know one parable that you can know them all? Yes. Why? They are all the same. Thatís why the kingdom of God is like this and also like this and like this and this, etc. Well what is that Ďlike,í like what?  Well itís like Seed. But what is that? What is it saying though? The Seed and the country and the vineyard and the leavenÖ what is it actually saying? What is it like? What is the Ďlikeí?
Sorry - to be continued in part 2.

Audio  2

                      WHAT IS THE GOSPEL OF THE KINGDOM?

So we are the kingdom! We are the kingdom of God. We are the temples - the heavens in which Godís Spirit dwells. We are a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar special people to God and through this kingdom, with Christ as the King, all the families of the earth are going to be blessed. But we are blessed through judgment and they are going to be blessed in judgment. We may think it would be nice if it was another way, but itís through judgment. 

                             WHAT IS THE KINGDOM LIKE ?

But I want to clear up this thing with the kingdom of God is Ďlike.í
Itís like a kingÖ
itís like a laborerÖ
itís like a treasureÖ
itís like leavenÖ
itís like a fishnet cast into the sea. 
What is all that? What are all those parables saying the kingdom of God is? What is all of this itís like, itís like, itís like, etc.? Itís like there are many called, but few chosen! That is what every parable is. Thatís what the parables are or some form of that. Who would have ever thought.

You have the mustard seed? Itís something that is very small and grows into something very strong. 

1Cor. 1:26  For you see your calling, brethren, that not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called.

The nobodies - the nothings - the mustard seeds. Thatís what God calls us. But they grow. 

Christ is the King who is gone into a far nation. To do what? What does the parable say, what is He going to get there? A kingdom! 

Where is Christ now? He is in heaven. But what is He doing on the earth? Heís getting Himself a kingdom. It started with the Apostles - the few. He said to Ďyouí itís given to understand, you are the few. But to Ďthemí - the many, it is not given, but to the few. Many called - a lot of seeds scattered around, but only some seeds fall on the good ground, the few. 

If you cast the net into the sea and you pull in all these fish. But you throw a lot of them away, because only a few are the good ones that you save. Thatís what the parable are all about... all of them. God choosing out the few for His kingdom. The kingdom of God is like this, itís like that, itís like, itís likeÖ itís like US and what God is doing through us.

Rev 5:10  And You made US kings and priests to our God, and WE will reign over the earth.

WE are the kingdom! You are going to have to do a little rethinking in your minds here maybe. We are the kingdom.

Rev 2:26  And he who overcomes (thatís us) and keeps My works (that should be us)  to the end, to him (thatís us) I will give power over the nations.

This kingdom is going to rule over the nations.

Rev 2:27  And he (thatís us) will rule themÖ

Remember the us and the them ďto you it is givenĒ (Luke 8:10). Thatís us, but not to them. The us, the we, are going to rule over the nations, over them. 

Rev 3:21  To him (thatís us) who overcomes (I hope that is all of us, because if you donĎt overcome then you won't be, itĎs just as simple as that) I will grant to sit with Me in My throne,

The throne is over a kingdom and the King of a kingdomÖ the throne. 

1Thes. 4:17  Then we (thatís us - the kingdom) who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them (in this case itís those that were asleep in the earth) in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we (thatís us) shall always be with the Lord.

Jude 1:14 "Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of His saints,

Thatís us, thatís the kingdom. The kingdom of what? The Kingdom of the heavens. 

There is the one seed - Christ. But if you are IN Christ you are Abrahamís seed, multiple seed. But in Christ we are ONE.

Mat 24:31  And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect (thatís us) from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

Then He comes back and thatís His army. He gathers them and He comes back with them and He rules the nations with a rod of ironÖUS the kingdom of the heavens.

Rev 19:14  And the armies in heaven (thatĎs us on white horses), clothed in fine linenÖ

Fine linen thatĎs righteousness - your doing what is right, which far exceeds the Scribes and the Pharisees or you shall in no wise inherit what? The kingdom of the heavens. So theyĎve got white linen on, because these people are righteous, they do what is right.

Rev 19:16  On His vesture and on His thigh He has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords.

You know who the King is, thatís Christ. Who are the kings? The kings are the heavens. We are the heavens. Here is a portion of Godís kingdom made up of heavens. Godís Spirit is dwelling in you - God dwells in heaven, but in plural, heavens. God dwells in the heavens of His kingdom. We are the heavens of His kingdom.
ďKing of kings, Lord of lords.Ē Who is Lord? Jesus Christ. Who are the lords, plural? We are the lords. 

                                       THE GOSPEL

Now notice what Peter says to the Gentiles in chapter 10, but first in Acts 15 Peter tells us it was through him that God first took the message of the gospel of Jesus Christ to the Gentiles. 

Acts 15:7  And when there had been much dispute, Peter rose up and said to them: "Men and brethren, you know that a good while ago God chose among us, that by my mouth the Gentiles should hear the word of the gospel and believe.

When you read the many many Scriptures about the gospel, the gospel of the kingdom of heaven, the gospel of the kingdom, the gospel ofÖ you really donít see what it is. When you go and find someplace where you actually find where this gospel was taught, most people donít even realizeÖ wait a minute heís teaching the gospel there. So what he is teaching there, thatís the gospel. Now it includes Christ crucified and resurrected. But thatís not what Christ taught, that's not what He specifically taught you see. Because Christ Himself taught the gospel of the Kingdom of the heavens, plural. 

Now here is Peter, you know the story: God shows him a sheet full of unclean animals and He told him to kill them and eat. Peter said, no Lord I have never eaten anything uncommon. God says donít call common what I have cleaned. Then he sent some people to come to Joppa and they were to go to Cornelius. Peter still wasnít quite sure what this was all about. But when he got there he realized what this vision was. God is opening up the gospel to the Gentiles and so he said;

Act 10:35  But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him.

Peter realized that now. It doesnít just have to be a Jew, they can be from any nation. 

Acts 10:36  You know the Word which God sent to the sons of Israel, preaching the gospel of peace by Jesus Christ (He is Lord of all!);
v. 37  that word which was published throughout all Judea, and began from Galilee, after the baptism which John preached;
v. 38  how God anointed Jesus Christ with the Holy Spirit and with power, and He went about doing good, and healing all those who were oppressed of the Devil, for God was with Him.
v. 39  And we are witnesses of all things which He did, both in the land of the Jews and in Jerusalem. Whom they slew and hanged on a tree;

This is all part of the gospel. He is teaching this now to Cornelius.

v. 40  but God raised Him up the third day and showed Him openly,

This is part of the gospel. Christ was crucified, was dead, rose from the dead.

v. 41  not to all the people, but to chosen witnesses before by God, even to us (Peter was a witness) who ate and drank with Him after He rose from the dead.
v. 42  And He commanded us to preach to the people, and to testify that it is He who was ordained of God to be the Judge of the quick and the dead.

Oops, how did that slip in there? Did you notice that? Did you notice what the gospel is? Jesus Christ is ďthe judge of the quick and the dead.Ē That is the gospel. This takes us all the way down to Rev. 22, doesnít it. It certainly does. This thing of judgment is part of the gospelÖ "Judge of the quick and the dead." Now John says that as Christ is, so are we. Christ is the judgment. Guess what? So are we. 

1Cor 6:2  Do you not knowÖ

Who is the you? Corinthians. Who are the Corinthians? The chosen, these are uncircumcised in flesh, circumcised in the heart, in spiritÖ Gentiles. They are the kingdom of God, these are the heavens where Godís Spirit dwells and He says unto them.

1Cor 6:2 Öthat the saints shall judge the world? 

Thatís the gospel. Jesus Christ was appointed for that thing, to be the judge of the quick and the dead and as Christ is so are we. Guess what? We are to judge the world. Well of course, we are going to rule them with a rod of iron. That is how we are going to start out in the kingdom of God on this earth, over the nations of the world, in whatís called the millennium or the thousand year reign. 

Rom 8:22  And we know that the whole creation groans and travails in pain together until now.

The whole world. If you have any doubts about that, just turn on the evening news. If itís not the weather; the hurricanes, the earthquakes, then itís wars and terrorist. Now they are burning down Paris, for eight days straight. This is always been the condition of the world. They say the history of mankind is a chronicle of wars. Man is either in war, coming out of war or preparing for the next war.

Rom 8:19  For the earnest expectation of the creation waitsÖ

This whole world, this whole creation is groaning and travailing in pain. Is waiting for what?

Rom 8:19 Öfor the manifestation of the sons of God.

Thatís us, the sons of God or the kingdom of God. They are the heavens in which the Spirit of God dwells and will rule the nations.

Obadiah 1:21  And saviors shall come up on mount Zion to judge the mountain of Esau (this is them); and the kingdom shall be the Lordís.

The ďsaviorsĒ are going to rule from mount Zion, not over there in that ugly swill of a city called Jerusalem. But from spiritual mount Zion. He is going to rule them, "Esau" is them, "and the kingdom shall be the Lordís." What kingdom? The kingdom of what, in this context? Kingdom of saviors, plural saviors. Who are these saviors? Thatís us, weíre saviors. Well this sounds a little odd, I mean weíre saying weíre going to be the saviors of the world. Well we do have a leader though, King of kings, Lord of lords, Savior of saviors and Son of sons. Weíre sons right, Heís the Son of the sons. He will always have a name superior to every other one.

                                      A BRIEF RECAP

Just a brief recap here of what we have seen so far.

The gospel of the Kingdom of God... we are a chosen generation, a royal kingly priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar - thatís Godís special people. We are the manifest sons of God, we are saviors to the world, we are lord and overseers and priests and judges and kings. Is that lofty enough for you. You get an idea, when it says the high calling, this is high. 

But let me tell you something, there is a price. You donít become a king, a priest, a lord, a savior, a very special person to God by falling off a rock. In the original gospel it was just very broad.

Gal 3:8  And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the nations through faith, preached the gospel before to Abraham, saying, "In you shall all nations be blessed."

Here was the good news, here is what Paul said, God Himself preached to Abraham and He called it the gospel. "In you (your seed) shall all nations be blessed." In these few words you can sum up the whole purpose for the creation - the world - the university - humanity, ďall will be blessed.Ē We will be the blessers, they will be the blessees. We are already being blessed. They have no idea what it is like to be blessed. They think the physical is the spiritual. If you get rich and famous and have a huge mansions and have all this materialism, then you are spiritually blessed. What?! If anything it comes closer to a curse. Why? ďa rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of the heavens.Ē Hardly!   

I donít want to be materially rich. If I were I would try to get rid of a lot of it very fast. I donít want that burden hanging over me. Itís not worth it, because if you start thinking about all the trinkets that you can buy with a lot of money. You wonít have time to think about spiritual things.
Thatís why they say, there are no atheist in a life raft in the middle of the oceans. There are no atheist in a fox hole, when bullets are flying everywhere. Because why? Because you donít have time to think about sex and fancy cars and all that stuff. Your emotions are very intent on one thingÖ survival. At a time like that people turn to God, they really do, in dead earnest. 

When youíve got a bank account and canít count all the 0ís and big houses and cars and fancy girls and you know whatever comes with it. How are you going to get your mind on spiritual things? It says, hardly shall a rich man inherit the kingdom of heaven. 


Mat 4:23  And Jesus went about all Galilee (thatĎs a pretty big area and you remember how He went about all Galilee? He walked), teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease among the people.
v. 24  Then His fame went throughout all Syria; and they brought to Him all sick people who were afflicted with various diseases and torments, and those who were demon-possessed, epileptics, and paralytics; and He healed them.

Syria, depending on whoís drawing the boundary lines, went all the way from the Mediterranean way across the Salt Sea and way out into the desert. Everything south of Galilee and north of the Dead Sea, where Sodom and Gomorrah was, that whole area. 

Now notice what it says, ďand His fame went throughout ALL Syria.Ē I mean not only, wherever He went people were following Him, but His fame went abroad and they came by the droves. You never see this in the movies about Christ. Everywhere that man walked, He was mobbed, always. Why? He healed the sick! Everybody knows somebody who was sick, diseased, crippled or whatever. 

Mat 4:25  Great multitudes followed Him--from Galilee, and from Decapolis, Jerusalem, Judea, and beyond the Jordan.

Now notice back in verse 23.

Mat 4:23  And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues,

The synagogues came about someplace between their return captivity and the rebuilding of the Temple. When the Temple was destroyed, before Herod rebuilt itÖ you know the Temple was destroyed and rebuilt a couple of times. So they didnít have this central Temple place to give their religious homage and so on. So every town and village developed a small community place where they all met, called a synagogue. Jesus Christ went to every synagogue, youíve got to get that in your mind. He taught all the people, He healed all the sick and He went into every synagogue, from synagogue to synagogue to synagogue. What did He do when He went in the synagogues? He did it in every synagogueÖ

Luke 4:16  And He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up. And, as His custom was, He went in to the synagogue on the Sabbath day and stood up to read.

He always did that, He went into every synagogue. Wherever He went there was a synagogue and He went in.

Luke 4:17  And was delivered to Him the book of the prophet Isaiah. And unrolling the book, He found the place where it was written, v. 18 "The Spirit of the Lord is on Me; because of this He has anointed Me to preach the GospelÖ

This is every place He went and He covered a big area. He went into every synagogue and He said bring Me the book of Isaiah, He opened it up and read to them. 

Luke 4:18-19  The Spirit of the Lord is on Me; because of this He has anointed Me to proclaim the Gospel to the poor. He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight of the blind, to set at liberty those having been bruised, to proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD.

Then He sat down.

Luke 4:21  And He began to say to them, this day is this Scripture is fulfilled in your ears.

He taught that in every synagogue, synagogue after synagogue after synagogue, year after year after year, for 3Ĺ years thatís what He taught, right there. He said this is what I am all about, this is who I represent, this is what Iíve come to do and you are seeing Me do it. But not completely.

He said, verse 18, ďAnd recovering of sight of the blind. Yes He did heal those who were blind, so that they could physically see. He did raise the dead and He did heal the sick, but they all died later. Most of them were not, spiritually, that much better off. Physically they appreciated being rid of diseases and all that. Physically they were very happy, they couldnít see and now they can see, they couldnít walk now and they can walk. 

                                       GREATER WORKS

But just like when God said to Israel, Iím choosing you, it was a shadow. Now Christ came and we say, at last now we have the real thing. That was right, He was the real thing. He was the Seed! 

But part of this gospel involves judging, right. Peter said it involves judging the quick and the dead. Did Jesus Christ judge the quick and the dead when He was here? Some of this remains and has yet to a fulfillment and it has to. I will tell you why it has to. Jesus Christ told His disciplesÖ

John 14:12  Truly, truly, I say to you, He who believes on Me, the works that I do he shall do also, and greater works than these he shall do, because I go to My Father.

He healed the sick, gave vision to the blind, caused the lame to walk, caused the dead to liveÖ youíre going to do greater things than that. Oh really? What might that be Lord? 

Iíve had people ask me numerous times, ĎRay can you walk on water, have you raised the dead, have youÖ?í As a matter of fact I have. Which is greater, to raise somebody back to physical life, so that they can physically die again or to raise someone who is spiritually dead to spiritual life? God is doing greater things through the called, chosen, Elect few of His church, than He did in His own ministry, when He fed 5000, walked on the water, calmed the storm, healed the sick and raised the dead. He said we would doÖ ďgreater things,Ē they are greater. They are not greater if youíve got a carnal mind, they are not greater then, it sounds like foolishness. Thatís what it will sound like to you, unless you have the spiritual mind to see it. 

I get email back to back, one says, ĎRay Iím in tears, Iím blown away, I never knew there was such a God. I never knew that the Scripture said such marvelous things as you are telling us.í Then I get another email, ĎMay you rot in hell you s_o_b_ , you son of Satan.í Two emails back to back! You tell me whatís the differenceÖ seed of the woman through Christ - seed of the devil.

So when Jesus read this many among them had already heard it, maybe the day before He had came into this synagogue in this village. If you read the Scripture it says every town, every city, every village, every hamlet and everywhere there was a synagogue He was there. He taught this Scripture and they saw that He did these things. But what do we read in JohnÖ

John 6:63  It is the Spirit that quickens, the flesh profits nothingÖ

But He healed the sickÖ the flesh profits nothing, but He caused the blind to seeÖ the flesh profits nothing. 

V. 63 ÖThe words that I speak to you are SPIRIT and are life.

ĎYou mean these words that He quoted to every village and town and hamlet and city in Jerusalem and Judea and all around Galilee, you mean all these words are Spirit?í Thatís what He said, I believe Him. These are words of Spirit. Heís not talking about giving sight to the blind, who canít see the sunset. He talking about giving spiritual sight to those that are spiritually blind! The words of Christ are Spirit, there fulfillment are Spirit. 

Christ has a kingdom made up of heavens - people who in their heavens, have God indwelling. This is Spirit!  Spirit is more real than physical, because physical is temporary, Paul tells us. This kingdom will last, Daniel says. This kingdom is not going to be over turned in so many years by some more powerful nation. 


                            THE KINGDOM IS AT HAND

Mark 1:15  and saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe the gospel."

Mark says the kingdom of God is at hand, now that should tell us something. The kingdom of God was at hand. Well then His Apostles went out after Christís crucifixion and resurrection and they taught the kingdom of God is at hand. Then the second generation of church leaders taught the kingdom of God is at hand. Here I am sitting before you today and I am telling you the kingdom of God is at hand. How is it at hand? It is at hand for you!

ďRepent, and believe the gospel." Itís at hand for YOU! Itís at your hand right now, for you! It wasnít at your hand before you were born, if some of you die this week or next month or next year or whatever, it wonít be at hand for you then. The kingdom of God is at hand NOW. When you hear this message, thatís when it is at hand for you. This is God telling you, repent the kingdom of God is at hand, right now, while you are sitting there, right now itís at hand. 

How is it at hand? Because Jesus Christ is, was and He will be! 
It is at hand for us now. 
It was at hand for them when it was preached back then. 
It will be at hand if there is generations beyond us, before our Lord returns. 

                          IT'S ALL ABOUT THE GOSPEL

Now we know who is the head of this kingdom, Jesus Christ the King. If we are going to be in the kingdom, we have to be like the King. If you are going to be in the kingdom, if you are going to be a king, under the King, youíve got to be like the King, right? You canít have some other agenda, you have the same agenda as the King. 

Now how do you become like the King? Well you believe the gospelÖ ďRepent, and believe in the gospel."  What is the gospel? Well we had a little smattering of it... the gospel is this message that Jesus Christ is going to raise the dead, heal the spiritually sick, give spiritual sight to the spiritual blind and be a blessing to all nations, all of these things. 

He said that His disciples were to go out and spread this gospel, did He not. Were they commissioned to spread the gospel? Do we know anything about what they did? Well yes, because they wrote it down in books and letters. 

You read in the beginning of most books as Paul says in the first chapter of Romans, therefore it behooves me or something to that effect, to bring you (the Romans) the gospel. He came to give the Romans the gospel and you canít say amen and close the book, no because that is only the first half of chapter one. Well what do you think is in chapter 2? The gospel! What is chapter 3 of Romans? The gospel. What is chapter 4? The gospel. Chapter 15, chapter 16? The gospel, the gospel, the gospel. Well what is first Corinthians? The gospel. Second Corinthians? The gospel. Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians and Colossians? The gospel. I and II  Thessalonians and I and II Timothy? Itís the gospel! 

In Philemon He shows to Onesimus how to apply the principles ofÖ the gospel, if he wants to be in the kingdom of God.

In Hebrews? Itís all about the gospelÖ the Old Testament and the Laws and what it couldnít do and the New Testament and the Spirit and what it can and will do. James, Peter, John, Jude, Revelation itĎs all the gospel! 

Col 1:27  To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the GentilesÖ

This is the gospel. The gospel was preached to the Gentiles and the rest of the verse,

v. 27Öwhich is Christ IN you, the hope of glory.

If you want to be this royal nation, this kingdom of priests, this peculiar treasure to God, one of the judges, one of the priests, one of the lords, one of the kings, then you have to have Christ IN you. That's the hope of glory, Christ in you!   

Col 1:28  Whom we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus.

Thatís what the gospel is all about. Acts, Romans, Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Timothy, these are all teachings on how to bring children - infants in Christ to perfection - maturity. So that we can be elevatedÖ King of kings and Lord of lords. 

                             IN CHRIST  - IN SPIRIT

Col 2:10  And you are complete in Christ, who is the Head of all principality and power,

This is talking to the Colossians here, these are Gentiles, these are people who are trying to be the kingdom of the heavens.

Col 2:11  in whom also ye (all of you) are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands (no more physical rituals, talking about the real stuff now, in your heart - in your mind - in your soul - in your spirit), in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ,

People will say, Ďso Ray you are saying that we donít need to be baptized anymore?í Oh I never said that. I never said we donít have to be baptized anymore. We have to be baptized, we have to be circumcised, we have to partake in the foot washing, we have to keep the Sabbath, we have to partake of the bread and the wineÖ  IN SPIRIT. 

If you donít do it in spirit, then forget it. When you go down dry, youíll come up wet... you will loose some skin and some blood and thatís all. Youíll eat a little piece of wafer and youíll drink a little grape juice and thatís all. This is the real thing, SPIRITUALLY.

Spiritually you must be circumcised, you must have the foreskin of your heart, that flesh cut off. You must be baptized with Christ, that means you have to die. Thatís not too popular, that you have to die to the flesh... the flesh doesnít want to die. The flesh says, here I am look at me, donít let me die, pay attention to me, puff me up, make me great, make me important. Itís flesh flesh flesh. 

We have to be crucified with Christ!

Gal 2:20  I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loves me and gave Himself for me.

But this next verse is...

Col 2:12  buried with Him in baptismÖ

It doesnít say buried in water. Where do you see buried in water there? I donít see buried in water, I see "buried with Him in baptism."

Col 2:12 Öin which you also were raised with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead.

I donít see anything about water there. You say, Ďwell thatís what itís all about isnít it?í Paul said in the first chapter of Corinthians, Christ has NOT called me to baptize.

1Cor 1:17  For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel,

He said thatís not my calling, He called me to preach the gospel. This is the gospel... being baptized in Christ is the gospel and persecuted with Christ, and hated of all nations.

Mat 24:9  Then they will deliver you up to be afflicted and will kill you. And you will be hated of all nations for My name's sake.

Is Billy Graham hated of all nations? I donít mean to pick on poor Billy, but heís got every award, citation, and congressional honor that you can get. He has received every accolade from them. From the children of the devil, heís got every accolade in the world from them. You though, youíll be hated.

I knew a lovely man when I was in Worldwide. He came down and gave some Bible studies for us and I really did love the man. His name was Ray too. But he made the comment onceÖ now he understood about universal reconciliation, he just did not get the spirit. He said, Ďwe can be thankful we live in a nation and in a time where we are not persecuted.í He said, ĎIíve never been persecuted.í Guess what? He was not living completely Godly in Christ Jesus, thatís why.
When you always do whatís right, you will be persecuted and probably by some of your closes friends. Maybe your wife or husband, your mother or father, your children or neighbors or working associates. Not the least of which is your own brethren in the church will persecute you, if you always do everything that is right. 

They say - Oh weíre going to make little ribbons and hang them on the trees, to say bless our soldiers, may they kill many Arabs today. 
You say - well I donít want to do that.
Them - what?
You - I donít think itís right that we do that.
Them - well whatís with you? Youíre not patriotic? You donít believe in killing?
You - no.

If you donít think you will be persecuted, Iíll tell you that you will be persecuted. 


What did Paul say, ďjudgment must begin at the house of God.Ē ďJudgmentĒÖ persecution is part of that judgment. Overcoming the flesh, this is all part of that judgment. Those fiery trials and so on. 

And what is part of the gospel? We are going to bless the whole world, all the nations. How are we going to do that? Christ doesnít change, I change not, yesterday today and forever. How does He bring about perfection and maturity? ďJudgment must begin at the house of God.Ē JUDGMENT.

How is the world going to be blessed? JUDGMENT. The world is not cursed to eternal damnation in some fires of hell, to be tortured aions unending. They are to be judged. We are to be judged into perfection. Can we see that? Why does the word judge mean something here and then over here it means else? Judgment must begin at the house of God.

1Peter 4:17  For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God?

What does that judgment do? It makes you obedient to the gospel. If you are not judged beginning at the house of God and you're not part of that judgment, what are you then? He says, well what will happen to them that obey not the gospel? Well those are not being judged now. But they will be and when they are, guess what?

Isa 26:9  Öfor when thy judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.

Yes they will. I donít care if every Theological seminary on the face of the earth denies it, when Godís judgments are in the earth the inhabitants of the whole world WILL LEARN RIGHTEOUSNESS. God does not torture righteous people for all eternity. Most people have never heard the gospel. 

In Mark we get some of the earliest indications of what has to be done regarding this gospel. I could try to go through Acts and Romans, Corinthians and Ephesians, Colossians, I and II Timothy and James, Peter, John and Jude and show you all the things that Christ is going to do in and through you. Thereís the judgments and the trials and all the things we are to learn. 

Hopefully if some of you could attended our Bible studies and you keep reading the material on Bible-Truths.com, you will learn how to think and act and accomplish these things that are taught. Get it out of your head that Matthew, Mark, Luke and John are the four gospels. The whole New Testament is the gospel. What, do you think Paul did not preach the gospel? He is just as much the gospel as Luke. John is just as much the gospel as Mark. Itís all the gospel. Itís good news. If it is good newsÖ if itís good, anything that you read in here itís the gospel.

                         WORKS TO BE SEEN OF MEN

But I want to zero in on one thing though. Just this one requirement for entering the kingdom, just one. Of course if you qualify in one area perfectly, it would cover other areas. But I want to just cover one area, because it was specifically mentioned several times in connection with, either being in the kingdom or not being in the kingdom. Just one requirement.

Mar 1:15  Örepent ye, and believe in the gospel.

Mat 5:20  Öexcept your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no wise enter into the kingdom of heaven.

Your righteousness must FAR exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees. But there is one giant sin that will keep you out. There is one thing that Jesus said about the Pharisees, something about them, the way they always were, they way they operated, the way they did and thought and so on, that He just berated. 

Matt 6:1  Take heed that ye do not your alms (your good deeds - works) before men, to be seen of them: otherwise ye have no reward with your Father who is in heaven.
v. 2  Therefore when you do your alms, sound not a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have received their reward.

Do not do good to show off, do not do good to be seen of men, do not do good to have your flesh glorified - puffed up - pumped up. God says that you will have no reward, that is your reward.

Let me tell you honestly. I donít want materialism. Itís not that I wouldnít enjoy having it or I canít appreciate it or any of those things. I do and I can and I probably would, but I donít WANT it. Because I fear that it would interfere with my spiritual growth and I could even be turned away. Now I wouldnít have said that twenty years ago, no. I would have said bring it on Lord. I donít want it now, I donít want it anymore, I donít want it. I do want to wear nice clean clothes, but I donít need to have a ton of them and they donít need to be the Reitz Carlton, designer everything, it just doesnít have to be.

So donít do your deeds to be seen of men, because then you have your reward.

Now in Matt. 23 He makes a very profound statement, he mentions this over and over. But here He says something a little stronger yet.

Mat 23:1  Then spake Jesus to the multitudes and to his disciples,
v. 2  saying, The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses seat:
v. 3  all things therefore whatsoever they bid you, these do and observe: but do not ye after their works; for they say, and do not.
v. 4  Yea, they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men's shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with their finger.
v. 5  But ALL their works (how many of their good deeds? ALL) they do to be seen of men, They make their phylacteries broad and enlarge the borders of their garments.
v. 6  They love the best places at feasts, the best seats in the synagogues,
v. 7  greetings in the marketplaces (to be seen of men),

All their works, I donít think Christ was lyingÖ ALL their works. Read chapter 3 and tell me that one of these people are going to be in the kingdom of God. Some of the works could be good works, it doesnít matter. If you are doing it to be seen of men, if you are putting back the flesh that you was supposed to have cut off. If you are struggling to come back to the surface of that baptism in Jesus Christ and you say Iíve been down there long enough, I want to come up and dry off, I want some of this flesh back.


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