Friday, December 14, 2012

What is the Gospel?

To answer this question it is imperative to remember that "gospel" means "good news."  
So when we hear evangelists preaching the gospel we expect to be hearing them announcing or explaining good news.  
That is a given, surely.

I guess that's why we see the gospel described in the Scriptures as "the gospel of the grace of God" and "the gospel of Jesus Christ" and "the gospel of the kingdom of God" and "the gospel of peace" and "the gospel of the glory of Christ."

I can't find anywhere anything like "the gospel of the wrath of God" or "the gospel of everlasting torment."  

How absurd to suggest that either of these could be associated with the word "gospel."
Yet how many times do we hear wrath and everlasting torment masquerading as gospel preaching in our churches and on our television screens?

How different is this from Paul's statement in Romans 10:15 ?

As it is written:
“How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace,
Who bring glad tidings of good things!”  [NKJV]

The gospel is glad tidings of good things.
It is the good news that through Jesus God has reconciled us to himself - he is at peace with us.

God loves us and is on our side.
God holds nothing against us - any of us - whether we know it or not, whether we believe it or not, whether we appreciate it or not.
What God has done through Jesus does not depend on us in any way.

It is totally his decision, his work.

Now that's good news; that's the gospel; that's what God calls us to preach.
And the Christmas season is a great time to preach it - to explain to people the mission of the babe in the manger.

Blessings, Barry

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