For some, it's a type of music from down south. For others, it's an outdated messages. What does "the gospel" mean, anyway?
What is the GOSPEL message?
The word gospel is an old English word meaning “good news.” It translates a Greek word of the same meaning which the New Testament uses to describe both the story and mission of Jesus--and really the core story of the whole Bible. We can use six words to describe the meaning of the gospel: God, Our, Sins, Paying, Everyone and Life. Also, these six words form a basic outline of the books of the Bible.
God created us to be with Him. (Genesis 1-2)
In these two chapters God creates all of the universe and everything in it (Genesis 1:1), including the first man and woman. They had no sin, therefore no shame, therefore nothing to hide from God or each other. They regularly communed with God and had sheer bliss, pure happiness and unadulterated joy.
Our sins separate us from God. (Genesis 3)
When the first humans rebelled against God and sinned, they immediately became aware of their “error.” They tried to hide and we’ve been hiding from God ever since, covering our sin and shame with the fig leaves of religion or philosophy. The consequence of sin is spiritual and physical death.
Sins cannot be removed by good deeds. (Genesis 4 – Malachi 4)
From the beginning humanity has attempted to remove the stain of sin by good deeds, but it never works. God sees through even our best efforts and calls them filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6). And it doesn’t matter if our deeds are done in the name of religion. Religion doesn’t deal with our real inner sin problem.
Paying the price for sin, Jesus died and rose again. (Matthew – Luke)
When Jesus came to the earth he came as the ultimate sacrifice (Luke
24:46). He lived the perfect life that we could not live and died in our place, for our sin. He was fully God and entirely man. As a perfect human he could die for other humans. As the true and living God his payment for sin was infinite. Jesus rose from the dead three days after he was murdered on the cross.. Because he died our sins are paid for entirely. Because he rose from the dead we know that Jesus was who he claimed to be, God in the flesh.
Everyone who trusts in Him alone has eternal life. (John)
The amazing thing about eternal life is that it is a free gift given to us by God through faith alone and not by any of our good deeds (Ephesians 2:8,9). Jesus paid the price for our sins when he died on the cross and all we must do is receive the gift of forgiveness through faith. When we believe that Jesus died for our sins and trust in Him alone we receive eternal life, are passed out of death into life and are guaranteed a home in heaven (John 5:24).
Life with Jesus starts now and lasts forever. (Acts – Revelation)
Because Jesus died on the cross and rose from the dead we will be with Jesus forever. When we trust in Jesus we enter into a personal, permanent relationship with God called “eternal life.” Part of the reality of eternal life is that it doesn’t start after you die but as soon as you believe (John 10:10). This life is the joy of a real, exciting relationship with Jesus every single day through prayer, worship and living in the strength that God provides.