No one who has seriously considered the teaching of the New Testament will deny that Christ needs to be preached to save sinners. It is evident from Bible examples that Christ was preached to the lost. "Philip went down to Samaria, and proclaimed unto them Christ." (Acts 8:5) He also "preached Jesus" unto the Ethiopian eunuch. (Acts 8:35.)
The modern religionist's view of preaching Christ is to only proclaim His deity; convincing man that He is the Son of God. When man believes this or "accepts Christ as his personal Savior," he is saved, according to them. However, the honest student of the Bible knows that you cannot "Accept Christ" and be saved unless you obey His commands. Jesus is "the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him." (Heb. 5:9) Hence, gospel preachers through the years have taught the sinner to believe, (Jno. 8: 24); repent, (Luke 13:3); confess one's faith with the mouth, (Rom. 8:9-10); and be baptized for the remission of sins, (Acts 2:38). When Philip "preached Christ" to the Samaritans and the eunuch, these things were included.
However, this is not all that is involved in preaching Christ. We do not believe you can proclaim Christ without preaching about His church. We have heard and read where some preachers say that we ought to preach Christ and not the church.. I maintain that this is an impossibility for the following reasons:
(1) The church is the kingdom of God. (Matt. 16: 18; Col. 1:23.) Christ is the King. (I Tim. 6:15.) How can we preach the King without preaching His kingdom?
(2) Christ is the head of the church. (Eph. 1:22) The church is the body of Christ. (Col. 1:18.) Is it possible to separate the Head from the Body?
(3) The church is the bride of Christ. (Rom. 7: 4.) Should the Husband (Christ) be separated from His Bride?
(4) Christ is the Shepherd. (Jno. 10:11.) The church is the flock. (Acts 20:28.) Shall we speak of the Shepherd and not mention His flock?
(5) Christ will save His Body. (Eph. 5:25.) The church is the body. (Col. 1:18.)
Shall we preach He will save anything else?
In view of the foregoing Scriptures, we cannot understand how men believe that the church should not be preached. We still preach and believe that when one is baptized into Christ (Gal. 3:27), he is also baptized into the one body (I Cor. 12:13) and the Lord adds him to the church universal. He then joins himself to a local congregation so he can worship as the Word directs and have a part in the work that God has assigned to that body as a collectivity.
Therefore, it is our firm conviction that preaching Christ includes preaching of the church or kingdom and one cannot truly proclaim Jesus until he does.