Note on the Gospel of the Kingdom after the Glory

Zechariah 2:8.

The gospel to the lost sheep of the house of Israel will not have gone over the cities of Judah till the Son of man be come. (Matt. 10:23.) It will probably be preached by those who have fled from Jerusalem during the great tribulation.

Prophecy speaks of the Lord's coming to execute judgment on the nations,* breaking them with a rod of iron, and dashing them in pieces like a potter's vessel. (Ps. 2:8-9.) This is what may be called the warrior judgment which occupies the Lord on His return to the earth (see Rev. 19:15, where He is represented as coming to "smite the nations," treading the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God).

*Translated sometimes nations, sometimes Gentiles, and sometimes heathen.

Particular nations will be specially dealt with, such as Edom, where the Lord goes in person to tread the winepress, returning with His garments stained with blood (Isa. 63), and the nations who come up against Israel in the great confederacy of the latter day. (Zech. 14:2-3, 4.)

This warrior judgment will have reference, to a large extent, to the treatment of the Jews by the nations, and especially to the conduct of those nations who have been used as the rod of His anger for the chastisement of His own people. (Isa. 10:5-12.)

Prior to this judgment there is no message of peace sent to the nations. The "everlasting gospel," however, is preached before this warrior judgment, as we see from Revelation 14:7. The burden of this gospel is, "Fear God, and give glory to Him; for the hour of His judgment is come: and worship Him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea." This is a message of coming judgment, based on His rights as Creator, as were the messages of Enoch (Jude 14) and Noah (Gen. 6:13, and 2 Peter 2:5), and is hence appropriately called the everlasting gospel. And those who hear this message will, I doubt not, be among those who are spared in the time of the warrior judgment.

After this judgment, executed either by the Lord in person (as in some cases), or by the Jews as instruments (in other cases), comes the gospel of the kingdom - (J. N. Darby. gives this name to the gospel preached by the Jews before the Lord comes: see Synopsis on Matthew, p. 174) - in which the glory of Him who has come to reign is declared. This is a message of peace, and is carried abroad to all the nations. The messengers of this gospel are probably Jews. In Isaiah 66, the prophet, after telling of the warrior judgment in which the Lord pleads with all flesh by fire, and by His sword (vv. 15, 16), says that He will send those that escape of them to declare His glory among the Gentiles. The escaped ones referred to are a spared remnant of Jews. (See Zech. 13:8-9.)

In the millennial summons in Psalm 96, those addressed are told to "declare His glory among the heathen" (v. 3), and to "say among the heathen that the Lord reigneth." (v. 10.) So, in Micah 5, after describing the judgment of the great Assyrian invader of the latter day, the prophet says that the remnant of Jacob shall be in the midst of many people as a dew from the Lord. Again, in Zechariah 8:13, the house of Judah is told that, as it had been a curse among the heathen, it will be a blessing.

The proclamation of this message of peace after the warrior judgment is referred to in many passages, as Isaiah 52:7-10, Nahum 1:15, Zechariah 9:10, Zechariah 2:8; but I do not refer to these and the many others particularly, as they do not contain any special reference to the agency used for its proclamation.

It is after this proclamation of peace that the King sits upon the throne of His glory, and holds the sessional judgments described in Matthew 25 and Joel 3. And the subject of these judgments has almost entire reference to their treatment of the Jews, whether as scattered amongst them, or as having gone out with the message of peace: called "these my brethren" in Matthew 25, and "my heritage Israel," or "the children of Judah," in Joel.

The commission given to the apostles in Matthew 28:19 is one which was formally given up to Paul (Gal. 2:9), who went under different directions. (1 Cor. 1:17). It has yet to be fulfilled by the Jewish disciples of the latter day, who will go forth discipling and baptizing all the nations. A. M. M.

The Scriptures are the permanent expression of the mind and will of God, furnished as such with His authority.