Herbert W Armstrong Library
Sign In  |  MyHWA  |    
The Incredible Human Potential
QR Code
The Incredible Human Potential

Chapter 2


We have seen how the most important of all knowledge, sent by the Creator of all races, was suppressed and another "gospel" foisted on a very deceived and unknowing world. The world heard thereafter about the messenger, but not the message He brought. The time has come when that awesome message must be revealed to the world.

What, Then, Is the True Gospel?

The true gospel is the good news that God sent from heaven by Jesus Christ. That message, when fully understood, reveals a human potential so stupendous it appears at first to be totally beyond belief! It is incredibly wonderful news revealed from the Creator.
   It reveals the most wonderful TRUTH a human mind could come to know.
   It reveals what I term the MISSING DIMENSION IN KNOWLEDGE — the most necessary knowledge so vital to know!
   That vital message reveals why humanity was put here on earth. That's vital knowledge science cannot discover, religion has not revealed, education cannot teach.
   Why? Were we put here for a PURPOSE? What is that purpose?
   Is there, after all, purpose and meaning to human life? A purpose and meaning suppressed from human dissemination? That's vital knowledge OUTSIDE the scope of today's science, religion, or education!

The Missing Dimension In Knowledge

If there is purpose, what is it? Why were you born?
   Where are we going? What is the ultimate transcendent potential of man? What is the way? How do we achieve that destiny?
   What is the way to peace — among nations, between individuals, and between groups?
   Why all this world's evils? Why can't we solve our human problems? There IS A WAY, and the true gospel reveals it! It's a basic law that works by inexorable and relentless force.
   What is human nature? Did God create and instill it in humans to trouble us? Is it hereditary? How does it work? Neither modern science, religion, nor education can tell you.
   What is the human mind, and how does it differ from the animal brain? Why, when the human mind can invent the computer and can learn to send men to the moon and back, can't such minds solve their own problems here on earth and live at peace with their fellows?
   What is man? Just what are we, after all? Science can't learn that secret, religions have never rightly explained it, but the true gospel, when fully understood, reveals the answer, and in truth!
   What are the true values? What is important, and what is insignificant or of no value? Humanity dissipates its energy pursuing false values — spends its labor and its thinking in pursuits that are valueless and prove useless when achieved.
   The true gospel, when fully understood, explains the origin of the Devil. Did God create a Devil to mislead and harass humanity? The gospel explains how Satan came to be the great — though invisible and hidden — POWER that sways invisibly and actually rules this world. It explains why Satan moved with all his wiles and subtileness to suppress, through humans he could sway, this vital gospel message which God sent by Jesus Christ to mankind.
   Remember this: The true gospel message, had humanity heeded it, would have saved this world nearly all its anguish, troubles, suffering, and evils.
   It is impossible for me, in a few words, to make it clear enough with sufficient emphasis to cause the reader to comprehend the supreme, tremendous meaning and importance of that true gospel message.
   And even today, when heard, it is seldom really understood in all its colossal significance because Satan has thrown up such a smokescreen of false and counterfeit religions, "gospels," and teachings that the hearer or reader is left confused in doubt and unbelief — or in a state of indifference to the most important things in life.
   Nevertheless, now just before the END of this age, Almighty God has decreed that "this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations, and then shall the end come" (Matt. 24:14). This is the message the Eternal God is delivering now, by His end-time apostle, to the heads of governments in world capitals all over the world.
   The true gospel, when viewed with all that it embodies — the reason for it, the prehistoric truth of earth's first inhabitants, the reason humans were created and put on earth, the CAUSE of all the earth's evils and sufferings, the nature of the human mind, the need for spiritual salvation and what it is, the coming world tomorrow of peace, what lies on beyond, and man's ultimate incredible potential — becomes the most all-encompassing subject that can enter the mind of man. Beside it, everything else shrinks to total unimportance. It is greater than any story of man ever written before.

What Was Christ's Gospel?

God the Father had promised to send a messenger into the world from heaven, bearing a message from Him for all mankind. This promise is recorded in Malachi 3:1: "Behold, I will send my messenger, and he shall prepare the way before me [and that messenger, as explained in Mark 1:2, was John the Baptist and the Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to his temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in." The "Lord," here, of course, refers to Jesus Christ.
   That was the prophecy. The record of its happening is in the first chapter Of Mark: "The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God." Then follows the account of John the Baptist preparing the way before Him. Verses 12 and 13 record the temptation of Jesus by Satan, wherein Satan sought to destroy Christ spiritually, before He proclaimed a word of the message He brought from God the Father. More about this supreme temptation and test later. Then follow verses 14 and 15:
   "Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel ..." What gospel? "... the gospel of the kingdom of God ...." That is the gospel Christ proclaimed. The message He brought was the message about the Kingdom of God.
   That is the message God wanted proclaimed AS A WITNESS to all nations! But since the first century the world has known NOTHING of the Kingdom of God because that message was not proclaimed to the world after the first century.
   That message, when explained and fully understood, covers a very wide range of revealed knowledge. It reveals — I repeat — what science has been utterly UNABLE to discover, what religion has never revealed, what this world's education has never known nor taught.

Note These Points

There are a number of points to be noted which are significant.
   One is, that in Malachi's prophecy, Christ was called a messenger bearing a message — but moreover, He is called the "messenger of the covenant," which carries very important meaning, to be explained later.
   Again, notice the fifteenth verse of Mark 1. Jesus came into Galilee "preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God" and saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel."
   What did He mean, "The time is fulfilled"? And why was the Kingdom of God then "at hand," when it had not been before that precise time?
   These points are of prime significance.
   But first, before I explain more fully just what the Kingdom of God is, notice further that this definitely is the very gospel message Christ brought from God the Father — the same gospel the original apostles proclaimed — the same gospel the apostle Paul proclaimed to the Gentiles.

Christ Brought No Other Gospel

Jesus said, "I must preach the kingdom of God to other cities also: for therefore am I sent" (Luke 4:43).
   Jesus commissioned His disciples to teach the Kingdom of God. "Then he called the twelve disciples together, and ... he sent them to preach the kingdom of God ..." (Luke 9:1-2).
   "But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women" (Acts 8:12).
   "And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom ..." (Matt. 4:23).
   Jesus' parables concerned the Kingdom of God.
   To His disciples, in explaining the parable of the sower, He said: "Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God" and then He explained to them the parable.
   Again, "Then said he [Jesus], Unto what is the kingdom of God like? and whereunto shall I resemble it?" (Luke 13:18) — and then came a parable.
   "And again he said, Whereunto shall I liken the kingdom of God? It is like leaven ..." — and then follows the parable of the leaven (Luke 13:20-21).
   One of His most important parables is recorded in the nineteenth chapter of Luke: "... he added and spake a parable, because he was nigh to Jerusalem, and because they thought that the kingdom of God should immediately appear (Luke 19:11). Then He gave the parable of the noble man going to a far country to receive for himself a kingdom and to return — the picture of Christ's ascension to heaven, where the coronation ceremony shall take place, and His return to earth to rule all nations, as King of kings and Lord of lords, in all the supreme power and glory of the great God.
   What gospel did the apostles and Paul proclaim?

Did Apostles and Paul Preach a Different Gospel?

After Christ's resurrection, the disciples were with Him forty days. Were they talking among themselves about any other gospel during that time than the Kingdom of God? Notice, just before Jesus ascended into heaven. Luke had previously recorded what Jesus had done and said "until the day in which he was taken up, after that he through the Holy [Spirit] had given commandments unto the apostles whom he had chosen: to whom also he showed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God ..." (Acts 1:2-3).
   Notice after His resurrection Christ was speaking to His disciples about "the things pertaining to the kingdom of God."
   They, then, just before He ascended into heaven, asked him: "Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?" (Acts 1:6.) The apostles seemed never to understand that the Kingdom of God was not to be set up on earth in their lifetime, even though Jesus' teaching — especially the parable of the pounds (Luke 19, quoted above) — should have made it clear to them.
   After two years, from the inception of the Church of God on the day of Pentecost, A.D. 31, the counterfeit movement set in, headed by Simon the Sorcerer. The historic book of Acts records: "And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles. preaching the word." What word? Continue:
   "Then Philip went down to the city of Samaria ... but when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized" (Acts 8:1-12).
   The apostle Paul spoke boldly at Ephesus for three months "disputing and persuading the things concerning the kingdom of God." On a later trip, at Miletus, Paul called for the elders of the Church at Ephesus. Saying his farewell to them Paul said, "And now, behold, I know that ye all, among whom I have gone preaching the kingdom of God, shall see my face no more" (Acts 20:25).
   At Rome, "there came many to him [Paul] into his lodging; to whom he expounded and testified the kingdom of God ..." (Acts 28:23).
   Again at Rome, "Paul dwelt two whole years in his own hired house, and received all that came in unto him, preaching the kingdom of God ..." (Acts 28:30).
   Did Paul preach any other gospel? To the Galatians he wrote, "But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed" (Gal. 1:8-9).
   But verses 6 and 7 showed that the Galatians had, already, turned to another gospel.
   Jesus spoke of His message — the Kingdom of God — as the "word" that He spoke. The apostles, as you'll read all through the book of Acts, went everywhere preaching "the word" — meaning the Kingdom of God.

The Vast Comprehensiveness of a Full Understanding

I must call the reader's attention again at this point to the fact that a full and complete understanding of the message sent by God to all mankind, by His Divine Messenger Jesus Christ, involves a vast comprehension of God's great purpose, and of events prehistoric, historic, present and future.
   I might say it means an overall understanding of every thing! Once understood, it will seem that the supposedly stupendous fund of knowledge disseminated in the great universities, is, in fact, infantile! It will seem as if man knows, now, almost nothing! For the missing dimension in knowledge is the all-important knowledge!
   So I ask the reader to expect GREAT THINGS to be revealed in this and coming chapters.

The "Gospels" Being Preached Today

I have said that you hear many gospel programs today. One uses the slogan, "Preaching Christ to the Nations." One might ask, "Well, what's WRONG about preaching ABOUT Christ?" Or, "What's wrong about preaching a gospel of grace?" Or "What's wrong about proclaiming a message about salvation?"
   I have shown you the scriptures showing they started, even in the first century, preaching about a DIFFERENT Jesus — a Jesus supposed to have abolished His Father's commandments — who turned "grace" into license to disobey (II Cor. 11:4,13-15 and Jude 4). They do not today preach the REAL Jesus, who said, "I have kept my Father's commandments," setting us an example that we should keep them also.
   If those who claim to preach a gospel of SALVATION understood and proclaimed WHAT salvation really is — whether it is going to a PLACE, being changed into a different CONDITION, or WHAT — or WHERE — and HOW it may be obtained, it might be a part of the true gospel. But today's "gospel" programs do not teach what salvation really is or how one may receive it. When the blind lead the blind, they all fall into the ditch.

Just What Is the Kingdom of God?

So it's time we come to UNDERSTAND just what is the Kingdom of God!
   What is a kingdom? The Bible speaks of several kingdoms. The first world empire — the Chaldean Empire often called "Babylon" — was a kingdom. God inspired the prophet Daniel to say to its king, Nebuchadnezzar, "... the God of heaven hath given thee a kingdom, power, and strength, and glory" (Dan. 2:37).
   Then there was the kingdom of Israel — the family descended from Israel, which became one of earth's nations or governments.
   The kingdom of Israel was a forerunner of the Kingdom of God. It will be composed of the Spirit-born children of God — the Family of God, organized into a governing Kingdom.
   Therefore the kingdom of God will be dual:
   (1) A GOVERNMENT. A government — or kingdom — is composed of four things: (a) a KING, ruling over (b) people, subjects or citizens within (c) a definite jurisdiction of territory, with (d) laws and an organized system of administering them.
   (2) A FAMILY (as the kingdom of Israel was a family of the children of Israel) — in this case the Family of God — a family into which humans may be born, which shall be a GOVERNING or RULING family that shall have jurisdiction over ALL NATIONS — that is, the WHOLE EARTH — and, later, the entire universe.

The Kingdom: a Government

Christ is to be the King of the Kingdom of God. He is the Son of God, whom He addressed as His Father. When the Church, by a resurrection or instantaneous change from mortal to immortal (from physical to spirit composition) becomes the Spirit-composed children of God, Christ will marry the Church which shall become His wife. So we have Father, Son, wife, and children of the Father — all a FAMILY relationship — the Divine God Family!
   Notice, now, some of the prophecies:
   "Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel [which means "God with us"]" (Isa. 7:14).
   "For unto us [Israel] a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Eternal of hosts will perform this" (Isa. 9:6-7).
   The angel Gabriel is a super archangel — a cherub — one of only three mentioned in the Bible. It is recorded, "And in the sixth month [of the pregnancy of Elizabeth] the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, to a virgin espoused [betrothed] to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.... And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name Jesus. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: and he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end" (Luke 1:26-33).
   When Jesus was on trial for his life before Pilate, the Roman ruler said unto Him, "Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth."
   However, Jesus also explained to Pilate that His Kingdom — His rulership — was not of this world — this time — this present age, saying, "My kingdom is not of this world ... but now is my kingdom not from hence" (John 18:36).

What Christ's Gospel Was All About

I say Christ's gospel — the message He brought from God — was the advance good news of the establishment of the Kingdom of God.
   But just what does that include?
   And why is the Kingdom of God necessary?
   Just how does it affect and relate directly to your personal and individual life?
   Actually, Christ's message of God's coming Kingdom is directly concerned with world conditions as they are — with human nature — its source and origin — with world evils, suffering, unhappiness — with world peace. It's concerned with government — with the reason present human governments fail to be the benefactors of their peoples they are supposed to be.
   His message hits directly at the very roots of individual personal happiness and at the awesome transcendent potential of each human life. It is concerned with the CAUSES of present conditions that affect every human and with the WAY that will solve all problems.
   But it is concerned with far, far more.
   It is concerned with God's tremendous, overwhelming, overall purpose as Creator of the entire universe. It's concerned with the entire vast universe, filled with its uncountable galaxies, nebulae, suns, stars, planets, and with God's purpose for them. It's concerned with all the angels — with the fact that one third of all God's created angels turned to SIN from which there can be no redemption, and God's great purpose and plan to prevent such a catastrophe happening to the other two thirds.
   Most of these things are never remotely considered in religious teachings in this world. God's message is concerned with overall truth.
   What has been covered so far should be considered as merely the introduction to the entire story of Christ's gospel message.

Previous      Chapter 2      Next
Publication Date: 1978
Back To Top
|  Fundamental Doctrines of the Church of God  |  Comments or Suggestions?  |  FAQ  |   Holy Day Information   |   Site Map   |   Donations   |
|  Sabbath & Holy Day Services   |   Weekly Bible Study Services   |   Video Groups   |
Follow Us: HWALibrary - Mobile Site
Copyright © 2016 Herbert W Armstrong Library
Important Notice

Please Note:

The address and phone number for the Worldwide Church of God given for material are no longer valid for obtaining the material offered in booklets, magazines, telecast and radio broadcast.

HWALibrary.com has all material offered on this site 100% free. You do not need to call or mail your requests, simply do a search for the material offered on our site.

The Worldwide Church of God dissolved after Mr. Armstrong's death in January 1986.

Visit our FAQ page for instructions on downloading audio and video files.

Sabbath Services

Sabbath Services:

Hello, and welcome to our Sabbath and Holy Day service tab. The services provided are selected from the recorded library of this website HWALibrary.com.

Services are posted every Sabbath or Holy Day. Our service consists of 3 hymns, a Sermonette, a hymn, the Sermon and a final hymn.

Continue to the Sabbath Service page.

Bible Study Services

Bible Study:

Hello, and welcome to our Bible Study service tab. The services provided are selected from the recorded library of this website HWALibrary.com.

Bible Study services are posted each Wednesday. Our service consists of an opening hymn, a Bible Study and a final hymn.

Continue to the Bible Study Service page.