What is the Gospel?

The word gospel means “good news” in Greek.  The good news the Bible tells us is that Jesus Christ died on the cross for our sin.  If you haven’t heard the gospel, it is probably not clear how this is good news for you.

God created the world as a perfect place because he himself is perfectly holy.  He was also gracious enough to create man for the purpose of having fellowship with Him and glorifying Him.  Unfortunately, men, since Adam himself, have been sinful by nature and rebelled against God.  If you do not believe this, consider the times in your own life when you stole, cursed, disobeyed your parents, were sexually immoral, or angry at someone you know.  God’s law as given through Moses (Exodus 20) and as presented by Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5) is very clear about the sinfulness of these things.  The fact that God is perfectly righteous and we are desperately wicked has created a chasm between God and man that man is incapable of bridging (Romans 3:23).  If you, having broken God’s law, were to be judged by him, you would be justly found guilty and be condemned to eternal punishment (Romans 6:23).

This does not sound like good news, but very bad news.  But God, by grace, because of his perfect love for us, sent Jesus Christ to live a sinless life and die a horrific death so that men may be given an opportunity to avoid the punishment that is due to them.  Only Jesus Christ was able to fulfill this purpose because he was the sinless Son of God.  Through faith in Him, men can have assurance that the punishment that God was prepared to inflict on them was inflicted on Jesus instead.  Additionally, Jesus rose from the grave on the 3rd day and lives today, which gives us hope that we will live eternally with Him in Heaven.

Now THAT is good news.

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