The one true and living God created the universe and everything in it. As Creator, he is also the ruler of all of creation and the one to whom all people are ultimately accountable. Because of this, there is nothing more important than a person’s relationship with God. This is what the gospel is all about.
The word “gospel” means “good news.” And indeed it is! The gospel is God’s message of good news concerning Jesus Christ. It is the good news of his death for sinners and his resurrection from the grave. It is the good news that eternal life belongs to all who call on the name of the Lord Jesus in genuine faith.
What follows is a summary of the gospel, the foundation and proclamation of the Christian faith.
1. God: The gospel begins, not with man, but with God. God is the only Creator, the one to whom we must give an account. God is love (1 John 4:8). From all eternity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit have shared an infinite love relationship with one another. In the work of creation, God extended his love outside of himself, focusing his infinite love on the creation, especially mankind. Also, God is holy and just. His holy character is such that he demands holiness from his creation (1 Pet 1:15-16; Lev 19:2). His justice is such that anything short of holiness will receive a just penalty that is appropriate to the offense against the infinitely holy God (Rom 1:18).
2. Man: Created in the image of God, mankind had the unique capacity to have a relationship with God, to obey Him, and delight to do his will. However, after being deceived by Satan, the first man and the first woman rebelled against God. From that time, all people who have ever lived have rebelled against God (Rom 5:12). “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Rom 3:23). In light of the holiness and justice of God, the penalty for sin must be paid: “the wages of sin is death” (Rom 6:23). When the holiness of God collides with the sin of man, the result is always judgment. Because God’s holiness is infinite, the punishment must be eternal. Eternal punishment is called hell, or the lake of fire: “This is the second death, the lake of fire” (Rev 20:14). In spite of the sin of man and the requirement of justice, the deep love of God for his people remained unchanged.
3. Christ: “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son” (John 3:16). By the will of God the Father, the eternal Son of God became a human being in the womb of the virgin Mary through the power of the Holy Spirit (Luke 1:35). Jesus lived a life of perfect obedience to the will of God the Father, being always led by the Holy Spirit. “He was tempted in all ways as we are, yet without sin” (Heb 4:15). Even though he never sinned, the Bible says that he died for the sins of man. On the cross, “God made Him who knew no sin to become sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Cor 5:21). On the cross, Jesus endured the full weight of the infinite wrath and justice of God against the sins of his people (1 Pet 2:24). On the third day after his crucifixion, Jesus arose from the dead, physically and bodily, leaving behind an empty tomb! (Luke 24:5-6). Jesus’ resurrection, among other things, serves as the proof that God accepted the death of Jesus as payment in full for the sins of His people. Jesus’ death and resurrection is the effective solution to the devastation of sin that separates God from man!
4. Response: Jesus died and rose again, but the Bible is abundantly clear that salvation from sin and eternal life are only given to those who willingly receive them by faith and repentance: “Whosever believes in him will not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). “He who believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him” (John 3:36). A person can do nothing to earn or deserve the blessing of eternal life purchased by Jesus. It is only given as a free gift, received by grace alone, through faith alone, not by works, so that no one can boast about anything before God (Eph 2:8-9). Our only boast is in the work of Christ on the cross (Gal 6:14). Those who respond to the message of the gospel by believing in the Lord Jesus Christ will indeed be saved and given the gift of eternal life.
If you would like to know more about the message of the gospel, please contact one of our pastors by calling the church office (502-231-3917) or by e-mailing one of our pastors: