Reformed baptist church in jaipur

What is the Gospel?

Author: Pankaj

The English word “gospel” comes from the Greek “euangelion”. It means good news. Gospel is the good news about God’s plan to save His people from their sins through His Son, Jesus Christ. Jesus, born of a virgin in the likeness of sinful flesh, obeyed God impeccably in thought, word and action — thus earning righteousness as second Adam for all the elect and died on the cross — thus atoning for the sins of the elect and was raised from the dead by the Father —thus declaring that His sacrifice had been accepted and all who would believe in Him would be saved on the basis of His merit. Jesus saves from sin, Satan and condemnation. Here, we have seen the elements of gospel in a nutshell. Now let us look at some diverse verses or passages that mention some or other element of the gospel. At the end, we will have a deep look at 1 Corinthians chapter 15:1-5 —a passage that describes the gospel precisely and wholly.

The first gospel account is found in Genesis 3:15 where God says that the Son of the woman (a prophecy about Jesus) would bruise the head of Satan who would bruise His heel. God in His mercy promised to provide a Saviour immediately after Adam’s fall. Soon after in verse 21, we see another glimpse of the gospel when God covers the nakedness of Adam and Eve with clothes made of animal skins foreshadowing the death of the Lamb of God to cover the sins of humanity.

The glorious gospel of our blessed Lord and Saviour can be seen in every book of the bible, however, we can only look at a few passages for the sake of brevity required in this paper. So we jump to the famous gospel passage in Isaiah 53, that shines like the sun against the backdrop of the Old Testament Law. There it says that we had all gone astray. We all had taken our own ways. We had all been separated from the Lord of life because of our sins and transgressions. It also prophetically tells that the Son of God would come and be crushed for the sins of His sheep. By His stripes all the believing would be healed of their sins. It pleased the Lord God Himself to crush His Son so that we would be saved.

In the New Testament, Luke 1:30-35 proclaims the virgin birth of Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit. Virgin birth is part and parcel of the gospel. Without virgin birth, Jesus could not have been sinless, which was a requirement to become the propitiation for the sins of humanity. The same passage also emphasizes that the one who would be born would be the Son of God. Jesus’ deity and humanity are both essential for the gospel. The angel in this passage told Mary to call her child Jesus, because He would save His people from sin. Salvation is from sin; not in sin.

In Luke 2:10-11 , the angel proclaims to the shepherds the birth of the anointed Saviour and Lord, Jesus Christ. The angel calls it good news of great joy for all the people. It is good news of great joy because it restores man’s broken relationship with God. The result of this restoration to the ever blessed (happy) God is great joy. Jesus came to give life in abundance. He came to satisfy the thirst of the souls. The angel also says it is good news of great joy for all people. The gospel is not just for Israel but for all people(s).

Romans 5:18-19 talks about two Adams. By first Adam’s disobedience, we all fell and became sinful. By last Adam’s obedience, all believers are declared righteous. This passage emphasizes Jesus’ obedience. He earned righteousness for us. He not only died but also lived for our salvation.

1 Corinthians 15:3-5 is a classical passage enumerating the gospel for us. Paul here calls the gospel of first importance. The gospel is non-negotiable. There is only one gospel. It cannot be altered or tweaked. Even if an angel delivers a gospel other than the one delivered by Jesus and His apostles, he is accursed. Then he goes on to give four facts that must be included in a gospel presentation:

  • that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures

This element of the gospel teaches us that we human beings are sinners and unable to save ourselves; and that we need atonement by a saviour. The Old Testament predicted the death of the Saviour, Jesus Christ. Jesus died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures. Without His substitutionary death, salvation is impossible.

  • that he was buried

Since Jesus died, He was also buried. His death was not a pretence. He really died and was buried. His death and burial also prove that He was fully human. His humanity is essential for our salvation in that God cannot die and be buried.

  • that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures

The Holy Writ did not just predict the death and burial of Jesus, it also predicted the glorious resurrection of this blessed Saviour. His resurrection is the proof that He was God’ Son. His resurrection was also necessary for our justification­­. By resurrecting Him, God declared to us that he has accepted the sacrifice of Jesus and would forgive anyone who would believe in Him. Paul also tells us further in this chapter that if Jesus is not raised, then we are still in our sins. So His resurrection is an essential  part of the gospel and should be an essential part of every gospel presentation. By His resurrection, Christ proclaims His glorious victory over sin, death and all the forces of darkness that keep all men in bondage because of sin.

  • that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve ….

This further proves His resurrection. Jesus’ resurrection is not just a truth, it is a truth conveyed to us by the eye-witnesses. Jesus appeared to His disciples and even as many as five hundred people at once. On the fortieth day from His resurrection, He ascended into heaven and he will come back to judge the dead and the living.

Everyone who believes in this Jesus will be saved. Hallelujah!




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