The Gospel is all about the Son of God who came from heaven to earth to die for our sins so that we can be reconciled back to God (2 Corinthians 5:19). It concentrates on God who became flesh ( 1 Timothy 3:16) and His work done on the cross for us. It is the simple message of love that originates from God and is to be good news to all people (Luke 2:10). It is not limited to any race, people group or nation (Matthew 28:18-19).
God loves you enough to tell you what's wrong, that you are a sinner. We all have a fatal disease in need of a cure- that cure is provided by God, it is called the gospel. Mans predicament of sin was not left for him to solve, God took the initiative to do what we could not.
It is God’s grace that gives us the way, to have a relationship with Him through faith (Ephesians 2:8-9). We are told to preach the gospel to all (Mk.16:15; Rom.15:20).
The Word of God whether it is read or preached is God’s means of presenting salvation which is found only in Christ. Faith is our response to the message for us to receive that salvation. Repentance is what we do if we truly hear the message of the gospel and believe it; we are then obeying its requirements.
Paul and the apostles message was the cross, “Jesus Christ and him crucified” (1 Corinthians 2:2). The Bible states it is the “preaching of the cross” that contains “the power of God” unto salvation, because only the finished work of Jesus on the cross can save us from our sins.
1 Corinthians 1:18: “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.”
Paul told the Corinthian church 1 Corinthians 2:2 “For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified.”
Paul says in Rom. 10.9: “If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord.” This means ones confession is to BELIEVE JESUS CHRIST IS WHO HE SAYS HE IS (meaning He is God in flesh 1 Tim. 3:16). Romans 10:13 says, “And everyone who calls on the name of the LORD [Yahweh] will be saved.” It is the confession of Jesus being God in human flesh –our having faith in the God-man that died in our place on the cross that saves us from the penalty of sin.
If we believe in Christ but deny His deity, then we only believe in a man. We are not in possession of the true faith that justifies; we are not saved (I John 4:2-3; 1 John 2:22-23).
Salvation may come by a prayer but it should not be reduced to only a prayer. Getting is person to pray, to say the words to be saved is meaningless unless in their heart they actually believe Jesus is the only way and are willing to have Jesus change their life by submitting themselves over to him the best they know how.
Jesus told Nicodemus “marvel not that I say unto you that ye must be born again. For that which is born of spirit is spirit, and that which is born of the flesh is flesh” (John 3). "You must be born again," is not an option but a command. Without it, Jesus said you cannot enter the kingdom. This literally means from above in the Greek, to be born of the Holy Spirit who is sent from heaven to earth. He gives one a new birth that regenerates the dead spirit of man to life to have communion with his maker.
When the gospel is given, it elicits a response to follow Jesus. It is more than just a decision but a life change, because it involves repentance. Once we are converted we become inclined to live for righteousness (Rom.6:13-20), God’s standard, because we are under new ownership. Jesus said. `If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself; take up his cross and follow Me. This is key to our discipleship process and daily spiritual growth.
There are many who do not know the gospel- who have heard it incorrectly, even in church. They add requirements to it or take away from it which nullifies its message. In the early church, as the New Testament was being formed the Judaizers came to Galatia professing to believe in Jesus and tried to convince this Church of adding the Old Testament law to the gospel. Paul objected and condemned this concept to protect the sheep. He stated in Gal. 2:5-8: “to whom we did not yield submission even for an hour, that the truth of the gospel might continue with you.” Why did Paul called the Judaizers false brethren? Because they changed the gospel and removed themselves and others from the saving message. Paul did not allow the ritualistic practices or laws of Judaism under the Old Covenant be carried over into the new covenant as a requirement (but he allowed them as individual choice). Days of worship such as the Sabbath, Feast days, or foods that were unclean were now up to an individual choice. To be in the new covenant of grace we forsake it all and follow Christ and live by the law of the Spirit (Rom.8:1-2, Gal.5:16,25).
Paul wrote: Galatians 2:21: “I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain."
Some add the human works such as baptism, others add laws from the Old Testament (Acts 15:24) such as the Sabbath, or new ones for holiness. When one adds anything to God's gospel they change it into a different gospel.
A gospel that does not preach the cross in its full sense, as complete, is not the Gospel of Jesus. When Christ is lifted to His proper place, he says that will draw all men to him (Jn.12:32).
Paul tells us the gospel he and all the apostles preached: “Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you--unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures” (1 Corinthians 15:1-4).
The completeness of the gospel: is the death - burial- and resurrection, this is a component of the gospel that is necessary to believe in. It confirms that He, Jesus, is the Son of God (Romans 1:4; 1 Cor. 15:13-19). This was taught by Jesus before he was crucified (Jn.11:25). Each time Jesus taught about his death he also included the resurrection.
There are those who bring another gospel, a different gospel than what the apostles preached and is recorded in the Bible. “Even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.” (Galatians 1:8).
The Mormons say the gospel was lost and needed to be restored along with a new true church. So they added other commands to the Bibles gospel and other book[s].
The Jehovah Witnesses believe that we cannot be saved today, only 144,000 go to heaven when they die and others go out of existence waiting for the future time to be recreated to enter paradise on earth; this is their gospel.
The greatest miracle is to be spiritually born which translates you from the kingdom of darkness to light. Acts 26:18: “to open their eyes, in order to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me”
Why do people need their eyes open? 2 Corinthians 4:3-4: “Even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.”
The god of this age, the most powerful of all angels, who is Satan, blinds those who do not believe and keeps them in darkness. The only solution for this light to break through is the preaching of the gospel. When one sees and understands God’s glorious gospel they have spiritual knowledge of who Jesus is. They become acquainted with the God who became man who knows our weaknesses and struggles, He knows what we are going through (Heb. 2:14, 4:15).
What happens when you exercise faith and believe the gospel?
Galatians 4:6: “And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts.” “For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus.” (Gal. 3:26). John 1:12 “as many as received Him to them he gave power to become children of God.” We are adopted into his family that spans from the beginning of the church until the resurrection. A relationship with God will change your life, guilt and condemnation for wrong things done will be removed and replaced with peace in your heart. As He begins to work within you your speech and attitude will change, you will see the world in a different manner, you will gain friends that will be based on spirituality and you will have fellowship with other believers anywhere you go in the world.
We present our lives as a living sacrifice to the Lord so he can use our feet, our voice and our lives to impact a world that is going in the opposite direction. We begin by having an influence first in our home, family, then our workplace, community, and then cities and countries.
It should be our privilege and honor to give this message-- Romans 10:14-15: “How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: "How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, who bring glad tidings of good things!"
for other articles on the subject of the gospel:
The Gospel- God's plan of salvation
The gospel of man or the gospel of God?- The differences being taught