Was The Gospel Preached To The World Before 70 A.D.?

I recently blogged on Matthew 24, suggesting that in it Jesus was discussing the end of the age of the Jewish sacrificial system, not the end of the world.

A question that may arise in response to this interpretation is based on Jesus’ prophecy in verse 14: “This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.”

One might argue the gospel was not preached to the whole world before 70 A.D. Therefore, the end Jesus is talking about must mean the end of the world, not the destruction of the temple in 70 A.D. and end of the Jewish sacrificial system. However, the Bible says the opposite. Continue reading “Was The Gospel Preached To The World Before 70 A.D.?”

Seeking First The Kingdom

Matthew 6:33 has, for many years, been a foundational scripture for me, not just because it demands the kingdom be a priority in my life, but because it frames a balance as well. Jesus states that Christians are to seek first the kingdom and His righteousness.  I read that to mean Christians are to be focused on two things: 1) the expansion of the kingdom of God on earth; and 2) personal sanctification.

The priority is obvious. It’s the balance I want to explore here. If Christians focused on the expansion of the kingdom of God and ignored sanctification, they would quickly become seen as dominion-seeking bullies. If Christians focused only on personal sanctification to the exclusion of the expansion of the kingdom, they would become ineffective pietests. Jesus makes it clear both are to be a priority to the exclusion of neither.

Kingdom-building and sanctification are not an either/or but a both/and proposition.  Keep these two at the very top of your list of priorities and you will be neither a bully nor a wimp, excessive nor ineffective.  GS