What is the Gospel?
“Gospel” is one of those Christian words that gets thrown around a lot, but not always defined well. In fact, sometimes people use it so broadly that you have to wonder if it still really has any meaning at all. The word “gospel” literally means “the good news.” Simply put, when the Bible talks about the gospel, it’s the good news about what Jesus Christ has done to rescue us from our sins. This, however, has a lot to unpack!
It all begins with God. We have an eternal, glorious, and holy God who created all things because of His goodness and blessedness. In His goodness, He created everything good, but things wouldn’t stay that way. It wouldn’t be long before humanity would lead the rest of creation into sin, choosing rebellion and unbelief. This had dire consequences for all of creation, including us, leading to pain, sickness, sorrow, hostility, and even death. The biggest consequence of all, however, was separation from God because a holy God cannot relate to a sinful creature. So, all of creation was condemned and separated from God. God, however, had a bigger plan.
God was not content to leave his creation in their state of condemnation, so He had an incredible plan to win His people back from their sins. God the Father sent the Son to become human. He was born from the virgin Mary, and named Jesus. Being fully God and fully man, Jesus lived a sinless life teaching people about the kingdom of God, and what it means to live for God and not our sin. This, however, made people hate Jesus, and they crucified Him, but even this was all part of God’s plan. In Jesus’ death on the cross, God initiated His rescue plan. In His death, Jesus took the punishment for our sins and traded it out for His righteousness. By taking our punishment and granting us righteousness, Jesus made a way for us to enter into a relationship with God and find freedom from our condemnation.
As though that was not enough, death couldn’t hold Jesus. Jesus didn’t stay in his tomb, but He rose from the dead. He is victorious, and through Him, we also get to enjoy the victory of new life in His Holy Spirit and the hope of a glorious future waiting for us. That’s the gospel, the good news about Jesus. All that we have to do to respond to the gospel is put our trust in Jesus’ death and resurrection to save us from our sins and turn to Him. He is all we need to live a life of joy in God.
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