THE GOSPEL OF JESUS CHRIST
By Pastor Max Solbrekken, D.D.
“Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the Gospel which I preached unto you…how that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures; And that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures.” (1 Cor.15: 1-4)
In this treatise I seek to declare the Gospel of Christ in its fullness with its rich promises of blessing and fellowship with God if received, and the peril of great loss if rejected and spurned!
It is my full intention in this study to honour the Word of God above all other words, and the Name of Jesus Christ above all names, as I endeavour to delineate the unadulterated, unvarnished and unedited Good News, even the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ!
Since the Gospel is anchored in the Scriptures of the Old Testament and confirmed in the New Testament and our Lord stated that, “salvation is of the Jews” (John 4: 22), here are some O.T. Scriptures that declare the trustworthiness of God’s Word:
“For ask now of the days that are past, which were before thee, since the day that God created man upon the earth, and ask from the one side of heaven unto the other, whether there hath been any such thing as this great thing is, or hath been heard like it?” (Deut.4: 31-39)
THE END FROM THE BEGINNING!
“Remember the former things of old: for I am God. I will do all My pleasure and there is NONE ELSE. I am God and there is NONE like Me. Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying My counsel shall stand and I will do all My pleasure.
“I have even from the beginning declared it to thee; before it came to pass I showed it thee: lest thou shouldest say, Mine idol hath done them; and my graven image, and my molten idol hath commanded them.” (Isaiah 46: 9, 10; 48: 5)
JESUS said: “Do not think that I will accuse you to the Father: there is one that accuseth you, even Moses, in whom ye trust. For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed Me, for he wrote of Me.” (John 5:45, 46);
After His resurrection our Lord appeared a total of seven times to His followers during the 40 days before His ascension to Heaven. The Bible records His conversation with the two disciples on the Road to Emmaus thusly: “O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken: “Ought not Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into His glory? And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, He expounded unto them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.” (Luke 24: 25-27)
LAW OF MOSES, PROPHETS, PSALMS!
He appeared to His disciples again, saying: “These are the words which I spake unto while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the Prophets and in the Psalms, concerning Me.
“Then opened He their understanding, that they might understand the Scriptures, and said unto them thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day: And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.” (Luke 24: 44-47)
Jesus Christ fulfilled 332 Old Testaments Scriptures. He was God incarnate (God in human flesh); True God from eternity and True Man, begotten of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. What a Wonderful Saviour!
He was born be crucified, to die and rise again in great power and glory so that He could emancipate the human race through His vicarious death for us and the shedding of His pure, holy and righteous BLOOD!
Before His substitutionary death on the CROSS, He conveyed to His disciples that He was the Messiah of Israel. He would NOT, however, restore Israel’s greatness as a nation but atone for the sins of the world through His Redemptive death as God’s Pascal Lamb, in fulfillment of Isaiah’s prophecy! (Isa. 53: 1-10)
“And it came to pass, when Jesus had finished all these sayings, He said unto His disciples, Ye know that after two days is the Feast of the Passover and the Son of Man is betrayed to be crucified.” (Matt.26: 1, 2)
“Then saith Jesus unto them all: All ye shall be offended because of Me this night: for it is written, I will smite the shepherd and the sheep of the flock shall be scattered abroad. But after I am risen again I will go before you into Galilee.” (Matt. 26: 31, 32)
THEY REMEMBERED HIS WORDS!
After He had risen from the dead, they remembered His Words and were strengthened in their faith and resolve to face the demonic onslaughts of Satan and his emissaries!
“Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. But He spoke of the temple of His body. When therefore He was risen from the dead, His disciples remembered that He had said this unto them; and they believed the Scripture, and the Word which Jesus had said.” (John 2:19, 21,22)
“These things understood not His disciples at the first: but when Jesus was glorified, then REMEMBERED they that these things were written of Him, and they had done these things unto Him.” (John 12: 16; Luke 24:1-8)
The MASTER had spent three years teaching His disciples through His unblemished, holy and righteous lifestyle, teaching and preaching and healing. They had seen Him answer the critics with the Holy Scriptures and compassionately forgive the fallen and heal the incurables.
He taught them about the power of God that comes through prayer and fasting and He demonstrated His teachings through concrete miracles! He told them that they could do those miracles as well because they believed that He was the Christ of God who had come to this world to reveal God to them! He said, Take My Word, My Power and My Name. Heal the sick and cast out devils!
They returned to Him joyfully saying: “Lord, even the devils are subject to us through THY NAME.” Jesus answered: “I beheld Satan as lightning fall from Heaven. Behold I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and NOTHING shall by any means hurt you.” (Luke 10: 17-19).
Jesus had witnessed Lucifer’s FALL from Heaven. He and his renegade co-conspirators had been ejected from heaven by the Michael and Gabriel at God’s command and therefore were powerless against Jesus Christ and His disciples. (Rev.12: 1-13) Continuing, Jesus stated victoriously: “Notwithstanding in this rejoice not; but rather rejoice, because your names written in Heaven.” (Luke 10: 20)
WHAT DID JESUS MEAN?
It is a natural phenomenon that demons must obey a man of God who speaks in the all - powerful name of Jesus Christ, in full faith of Calvary’s Victory. Demons are obligated to respect and obey the commands of God’s servants when spoken in faith! That which was even greater was that their names were written down in the Lamb’s book of life. Eternal life is the greatest gift of all!
Before ascending to Heaven, Jesus gave them their ‘work order’ called the ‘Great Commission’ which empowered God’s true disciples to continue using His name and power to work signs, wonders and miracles in their great work of Kingdom building!
“And He said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the GOSPEL to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned. And these signs shall follow them that believe; in My name shall they cast our devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick and they shall recover.” (Mark 16: 15-18)
How well did they do? What was the outcome? Did they affect the society around them? Did Jesus keep His Word? The answer is: “YES, Jesus kept His Word. YES, it went VERY WELL, indeed! Here is the Holy Record to prove that: “So then after the Lord had spoken unto them, He was received up into Heaven, and sat on the right hand of God.
“And they went forth, and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the Word with SIGNS following. Amen.”
Before He left them, He breathed on them saying, “Receive ye the Holy Ghost!” (John 20: 22). “And being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith He, ye have heard of Me. For John truly baptized with water, but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence.
“But ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto Me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. And when He had spoken these things while they beheld, He was taken up and a cloud received Him out of their sight.” (Acts 1: 8, 9)
THE HOLY SPIRIT FELL UPON THEM!
Is Jesus trustworthy? “YES, He is!” Did Jesus keep His Word? “YES, He did!” What really happened in that upper room where about one hundred and twenty obedient, hungry souls had waited in prayer for ten days? “They received the Promise of the Father and were baptized with the Holy Spirit and Fire!”
Here is the Holy Record of that great event: “And when the Day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all in one accord, in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from Heaven as of a mighty rushing wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.
“And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.” (Act 2: 1- 4)
What was the outcome of this great supernatural experience in their lives? This supernatural happening of God the Holy Spirit filling them, the wind, cloven tongues like as of fire, speaking with other tongues, made such an impact upon Jews from many nations assembled in Jerusalem. Hearing about God’s wondrous outpouring of the Holy Spirit brought a multitude together, asking: “What meaneth this?”
Peter preached that great Pentecostal message about Jesus Christ whom they had crucified was alive and had poured out the Gift of the Holy Ghost. He admonished them to repent and about three souls received Jesus Christ as their Lord and Saviour.
A short while later, Peter and John prayed for a paralytic who was instantly healed by the Lord. When the multitude saw that miracle another five thousand souls were saved! So great was the revival that followed that they brought the sick onto the street that even the shadow of Peter falling upon the sick and diseased and the Holy Spirit healed as he prayed and ministered in Jesus Name. No wonder, their religious enemies said: “Did we not straitly command you that you should not teach in this name and behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.” (Acts 5: 28)
And when Paul and Silas were preaching in Thessalonica they were accused thusly: “These men who have turned the world upside down have come hither also… saying there is another King, one Jesus.” (Acts 17: 6, 7)
All glory, honour and praise to God the Father through Jesus Christ our Lord, by the power of the Blessed Holy Spirit. One God in three persons, world without end! Amen.
NOTE: To be continued!