The Message of Grace

What the Gospel Is and Isn't

Much is said about the Gospel. What is the Gospel? And what isn't the Gospel?

Every scripture truth has two sides. One is God looking down at us; the other is us looking up at God! From our perspective, looking up to a holy and righteous God, there is nothing more important than the Gospel. This is because the gospel is the only way to go from being sinners under God's judgment to people who are forgiven and sure of eternity in Heaven with God.

What the Gospel is:

Very simply, the gospel is the message that Jesus Christ died on the cross as the payment for our sins, that He was buried, and that He gloriously rose again the third day in the same body that He was buried in.
For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, (1 Corinthians 15:3–4)

What the Gospel does:

  • The gospel saves. For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. (Romans 1:16)
  • The gospel tells of God's love for us. “…but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)
  • The gospel embodies God's grace toward us. “…if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God. (Acts 20:24)

What the Gospel isn't:

There are many false presentations of the gospel that, at the very least, confuse what the gospel is, and with the most egregious examples that obscure the clear message of the gospel and make human works or effort as part of the gospel. It is vitally, and eternally, important that we get the gospel correct, and that it is presented accurately to all who need to hear this message of God's love, grace and salvation.
  • The gospel isn't turning over a new leaf! It isn't us deciding to change. It is you and me coming to the realization that we can't change unless God first changes us. And for this to happen, we must receive His gift of grace in salvation.
  • The gospel isn't us DOING anything. It is not "asking Jesus into your heart." It is not "giving your life to Christ." It is not repenting and changing your ways. It is not baptism. It is not joining a church. It is not giving to the church or to the poor.
  • The gospel isn't complicated. It is the message of Jesus Christ. Nothing more, nothing less! Jesus Christ died for the sins of the whole world (1 John 2:2), was buried, and rose again the third day! (1 Cor. 15:3-4).
(…to be continued!)