Why the Gospel Must Be “To the Jew First”

Paul tell us in Romans 1:16 that the gospel is the power of salvation for all who believe and that it is to the Jew first. This has profound implications for both the content of our gospel and how we preach it. This tells us at least three basic things about the content of the gospel. First there is a certain priority in the gospel. It is first of all for the Jewish people and then the nations. Second this tells us the content of the gospel. The gospel is ultimately a proclamation that answers Israel’s crisis and longing for her national promises. Any gospel that is not good news to the Jewish people and does not result in the fulfillment of God’s promises towards her and the resolution of her long and difficult history is not a complete gospel. Third the fact that the gospel first of all fulfills Israel’s hopes tells us that God remains committed to fulfilling His promises to Israel. The gospel is to give Israel hope that her final salvation is coming. Sadly we have often preached a gospel that tells the Jewish people their national hopes all died in AD 70. It’s time to return to heed Paul’s word and return to the apostolic gospel which fulfills the hope of Israel and the nations.

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The Outpouring of the Spirit and the Salvation of Israel

The outpouring of the Holy Spirit is far more than the beginning of the church. It represented a commitment by God to fulfill His promises to Israel and also gives us clues to how God is going to fulfill those promises. In the outpouring of the Spirit, God did not shift His plan from Israel to the nations, He invited the nations to participate in Israel’s story.