What Is the Gospel?
The word ‘gospel’ means good news—God’s good news of salvation in Jesus Christ! This is what the Bible teaches. What is this salvation all about?
God—the Holy Creator
God is the Creator of all things. He is almighty and sovereign over all. This means that He made and rules over us, and we are dependent upon Him for everything. The Bible says:
God is holy. This means He is sinless and perfectly righteous.
God originally created man in His own image, righteous and holy. This means that the first man and woman, Adam and Eve, were made to have fellowship with God—to glorify and enjoy Him forever.
God has an absolute claim on our lives. This means we owe all to Him, are to love and obey Him, and are accountable to Him.
But there is bad news…
Man—the Sinful Creature
God put Adam in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it, and gave Adam a specific command. Adam was expected to obey God, or else he would die.
This command was God’s test for Adam, whether he would love and glorify God. But Adam (and Eve), through the devil’s temptation, disobeyed God and sinned.
Sin is the breaking of God’s law. When Adam sinned, he became guilty before God and died. This means he immediately died spiritually in his relationship with God, and later died physically.
Adam acted as the representative of all mankind. This means that when he broke God’s law, we all became guilty sinners before God.
Ever since, all people are conceived and born with a sinful nature. This means we have lost the original righteousness in which man was created. We are dead in sin—totally depraved in thought, word, and deed—lawbreakers by nature and practice.
As sinners we are alienated from God. This means that friendship and peace with God is replaced with enmity and warfare with God. We are unable and unwilling by nature to obey and please God, or be reconciled to Him.
God is just. Since we have broken His law, we are under His wrath and curse. His justice requires that sinners must be punished, body and soul, in time and eternity. Death and hell are real.
Since we are all guilty sinners, unable to save ourselves, how can anyone be saved from God’s curse and wrath, and be restored to a righteous relationship with God?
Enter the good news…
Jesus Christ—the Merciful Savior
God is also merciful. After Adam sinned, God promised to one day send His Son to be the Savior for sinners.
Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. This means that He is true God and true man, being without sin. As the new representative, Jesus perfectly obeyed God in order to satisfy God’s justice and gain mercy.
Jesus accomplished salvation when He bled and died on the cross at Calvary. In order to save His people from their sins, He bore the guilt and curse and wrath of God on their behalf.
Jesus rose from the tomb on the third day. This means that God accepted His sacrifice as the satisfaction for sin, so that sinners can be forgiven and justified—accounted righteous and reconciled to God.
The Gospel Call—Repent and Believe
God calls all people everywhere to repent and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ as God’s only way that sinners can be saved.
This means to admit that we are sinners, have genuine sorrow over our sins, and turn from our sins to Christ—by faith, trusting in Him alone to save us.
Salvation is a gift of God’s grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone, and not by any works that we do.
United to Christ in true faith, we have forgiveness, righteousness, and eternal life.