The Gospel’s Kingdom Commission

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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 out 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).

Mark’s Gospel, like Matthew’s and Luke’s, is primarily a Kingdom book and I am satisfied that none of them contains the church’s marching orders – not even the so-called “Great Commission” of Matthew 28:18-20.

This we would call the “Kingdom Commission.” Of course, we are well aware that it is often spoken of as the “Great Commission” of the Church, but we are convinced that this is an error. It would be a strange thing to find the church’s commission in the Kingdom Gospel.

The commission on Matthew 28:19-20 instructs the eleven to teach them “to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you.”

Not some things, but all things. The things that Jesus commanded were given while He was a minister of the Circumcision. The apostles chosen by the descended Christ had a ministry which differed from the apostles of the ascended Christ.

Dr. William L. Pettingill (1866-1950)
Dean, Philadelphia School of the Bible
Associate Editor, Scofield Reference Bible
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2 Comments on “The Gospel’s Kingdom Commission”


  1. […] The Gospel’s Kingdom Commission, by Dr. William L. Pettingill. […]

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  2. Deborah Says:

    I like that -‘Kingdom Commission’ rather than Great Commission. Calling it Kingdom Commission makes it more clear that it is not designed for the church.

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