Return to the simplicity that is in Christ Jesus.
The Gospel means "Good News". What do you think is the good news?
To the sick, would being healed be the good news? To the poor, would provision in abundance be the good news? To the opressed, would liberty be the good news? To the slave, would freedom be the good news? To the condemned, would being forgiven and acquitted be the good news? The answer is "YES" indeed. So is that what the gospel in the bible means? Emphatically YES!!!
Throughout the first four books of the new testament, in Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, we see the "teachings" and "actions" of Jesus. The things he taught and did in preparation for the salvation of the world. He said "I am the way, the truth and the life" - John 14:6. He said "He who has seen Me, has seen the Father." - John 14:9. He said "I am the resurrection and the life" - John 11:25. He consistently attempted to let the world know who He was and why He had come.
He went about healing the sick, raising the dead even, setting people free of demonic oppression and working amazing miracles demonstrating astounding power over everything man was helpless against. Even the weather obeyed Him.
Then towards the end of the gospels, we see this very Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane willingly taking upon Himself all of our sin and consequently enduring a painful torture and death on the cross on behalf of all mankind. These are all the "actions" of Jesus. But is that the gospel? The good news?
Not really! The bible says that after the death of Jesus on the cross, He rose again on the third day. His resurrection from the dead paved the way for the real "gospel", the real good news.
The good news for us is "understanding the consequences" of Jesus' actions. What did his life, death and resurrection do for us? How did it become good news for us? The "gospel" or "good news" is explained in the books of Acts and all the following epistles thereafter.
In simple terms, the bible says the following:
Christianity is NOT a religion. It is a Relationship with the one and only God who made us and loves us immensely. So much so that He longs to be with us forever. You cannot find God in man made idols or following certain rituals and chanting lengthy prayers. God offers Himself to us through Christ and all are welcome to accept His free offer of salvation.
Collosians 2:13-5 - You were at one time spiritually dead because of your sins and because you were Gentiles without the law. But God has now brought you to life with Christ. God forgave us all our sins; he cancelled the unfavorable record of our debts with its binding rules and did away with it completely by nailing it to the cross. And on that cross Christ freed himself from the power of the spiritual rulers and authorities; he made a public spectacle of them by leading them as captives in his victory procession. - The Good News Bible
Hebrews 1:3 - He (Jesus) reflects the brightness of God's glory and is the "exact" likeness of God's own being, sustaining the universe with His powerful word. After achieving forgiveness for human sins, He sat down in heaven at the right hand of God, the Supreme Power. - The Good News Bible
Romans 6:14 - For sin will no longer be a master over you, since you are not under Law (as slaves), but under (unmerited) grace (as recipients of Gods favor and mercy). - The Amplified Bible
2 Corinthians 5:17 - Anyone who is joined to Christ is a new being; the old is gone, the new has come. - The Good News Bible
You feel guilty and afraid to drive at 80kms in a 50kms zone because you know there is a law against it and the police might catch you and give you an infringement notice. You are all the more afraid when you see a police car nearby. You know he can stop you and "accuse" you and charge you guilty. But what if you were driving an ambulance? Same street, same laws, but now suddenly you are not under law anymore. You see a police car nearby, but you couldn't care less. Why? Because he has no authority over you. You are in a new vehicle, a different vehicle that is above the law. You don't feel condemned or guilty when speeding in an ambulance. Of course that doesn't mean ambulance drivers just run over people killing them at will. Quite the contrary, by nature they are careful and always trying to save lives. They don't need to be told to maintain a safe speed to prevent accidents.
Romans 8:1 - Therefore there is now no condemnation (no guilty verdict, no punishment) for those who are in Christ Jesus (who believe in Him as personal Lord and Savior). - The Amplified Bible
Likewise, when you are in Christ, you are a new creation. You are not under law anymore. Sin cannot be a master over you and neither can the devil accuse you of any wrong doing. Simply because you are in Christ and not your former self. You don't need to be told not to lie or cheat, etc because by nature you are a new creation now and its your natural tendency to be like God.
The bible calls the devil the "accuser of the brethren". When he cannot accuse you anymore, you can operate in faith all the time. You can walk in freedom and the power of God. Your prayers will be powerful and full of belief. Faith can only operate when there is no doubt....not even hope. Just belief. This is why Jesus said " Unless you change and become like children, you will never enter the Kingdom of heaven". Matthew 18:3. Little children; when they ask their parents for something, they don't doubt, the don't even hope, they just believe.
The reality is that we are FREE from EVERYTHING that holds us back from experiencing the abundant life that God has for us. But "understanding and realising" that is the beginning to that life. The answer is understanding the "Gospel" and what it did for us.
Being SURE of your salvation is critical to experiencing VICTORY in life. Being sure and confident of the fact that God does love you and that He is not angry at you makes you walk with your head held high. Joy and Insecurity cannot co-exist. Without true joy, you cannot exercise faith. Gratitude for what Jesus has done for us brings joy and true joy causes you to operate in faith all the time 24/7. The Gospel is The Good News and it sure is.
If you can understand the good news, then you will understand why Jesus said this:
John 15:7 - If you remain in Me and My words remain in you (that is, if we are vitally united and My message lives in your heart), ask whatever you wish and it will be done for you.
Read my testimony here.
I was radically transformed by the love and forgiveness of Jesus Christ back in 1997 in a most unusual way and unusual place. Read my testimony here. Over the years I have come to realize a few basic truths that have altered my life.
True freedom is freedom from self-centeredness. Dying to yourself, your wants, your desires and to what gives you pleasure for the sake of others is more liberating than you think.