What is the Gospel?
The Gospel is the “Good News” from God to us about Jesus Christ. Understanding the Gospel and responding correctly to this good news allows you to answer this question:
If you died today, would you go to Heaven?
In order for you to accurately answer this question, you must understand three things about God, man and Jesus Christ (expand the tabs below to read more):
1. God is Holy
The Bible tells us in Genesis 1:1 that God is the creator of all things including the earth and all those who inhabit it. This means that He is also the ruler and owner of all that dwell in the earth because He is their creator. Now, God is not like us for He is perfect in all His attributes. He is perfectly loving, perfectly wise, perfect in His strength and He is perfectly holy. In fact, in Matthew 9:48 the Bible equates God’s holiness with light and that God is light and in Him there is no darkness at all. This means that there is nothing wrong, evil or bad with God for that goes against His character. When the Bible speaks of God being holy what it means literally is that He is “set apart”.
2. Man is Sinful
In particular God is set apart from sin. What do you think sin is? Where did sin come from? How come we see so much sin in this world? Sin relates to anything that goes contrary to what God says is good, just and right. Literally, sin means to “miss the mark” and I think the best way to understand sin is to consider the life of Adam and Eve. The Bible says in Genesis 1:27 that God created Adam and Eve in His own image and placed them in the garden telling them they could eat from any tree in the garden except one. God said that if they were to eat from that tree they would surely die.
Do you know what happens next? Satan comes along in the form of a serpent and deceives Eve and she gives some of the fruit to Adam and right there all of mankind changes as sin enters the world. Adam “missed the mark”. He did what God told him he could not do. Adam had acted in full rebellion towards God and had to pay the penalty for that rebellious act of sin. Do you know what the penalty was? Genesis 2:16-17 says that God had told Adam that if he ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil he would surely die.
The penalty for Adam’s first act of sin was death! He died in two ways: spiritually and physically. Spiritually Adam died in his relationship to God. He was now separated from God and he would die physically as well. The bible also says in Romans 3:23—For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. All mankind born after Adam are born spiritually dead and separated from God.
Romans 6:23 says—For the wages of sin is death. Wages are what are due to you as payment for the work you do for your employer. God in the same way is keeping track of all the wrong things you have done. All the sinful acts and thoughts you have committed God is tallying up against you for judgment. And one day that judgment is coming. Do you know when?
Judgment comes when you die. The Bible also says in Hebrews 9:27—That it is appointed unto man once to die and then judgment. What will you do on that day? What will you say when God is ready to judge you on the basis of your sin? Remember He is perfectly holy and His standard to escape the judgment of sin is perfection. It is not like you can stand before God and say, “I think my good outweighs my bad”, because any amount of bad requires death as the penalty. The Bible says you stand condemned before a Holy and Righteous God who demands death as the penalty of your sin. You need help don’t you? You need a way back to Him. Jesus is that way.
3. Jesus is the Answer to Man's Sin Problem
In John 14:6 Jesus says—I am the WAY, the TRUTH and the LIFE. This means that Jesus is the only way back to God. He is the only way to heaven. This also means all that Jesus says is true, not partially true, almost true, kind of true but completely true! Jesus is the only man who lived on the earth who lived a perfect life. He never lusted, stole, said a bad word or told a lie. Imagine everything that He said was 100% complete truth. How can this be?
It is true because of who Jesus is. He was not just a man but he is the God Man. He is the Son of God. He is God the eternal one. “For in Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form.” Colossians 2:9
Finally, Jesus says He is the Life. Here Jesus is speaking of eternal life. Jesus holds the key to eternal life. He is the source of eternal life. Nobody can gain eternal life from any other but Jesus. Jesus’s death bought sin’s redemption and opened the way to eternal life. Jesus paid the price of death for sin. The Bible says that Jesus Christ is the Savior you and I need to help us with this “sin debt” that we have accumulated (Rom. 5:8). The Bible says that Jesus Christ is God incarnate and sinless man combined.
Christ did what no other person could do: He lived a perfect life and then died on the cross to pay for our sins. His blood was shed showing that His life was forfeited for ours. He is our substitute. He died in our place so that we might be able to have eternal life which only He can offer. God was completely satisfied with His sacrificial death and showed this by raising Him from the dead (2 Cor. 5:21).
The Bible says that this Good News about Jesus, the Gospel, is a free gift. It cost His Son dearly but to those He saves it is a free gift (Eph. 2:8-9). This means you can’t earn it. But how do you get this free gift? You must merely receive the gift through belief in Christ and repentance. The choice of whether to receive or reject the Gospel is now before you today.
The issue is not whether one “believes” in Christ—even the demons “believe” and shudder (James 2:19)—rather, the issue is whether you as a sinner believe in Christ as He revealed Himself. You must believe in Christ as Lord and Savior and repent of your sins. The idea of repentance is recognizing what you have done is wrong and turn away from that life and seek to follow God in obedience.
Are you ready to repent of your sins today, accept God’s gift of salvation, and live for Him as it says in Acts 17:30 - “but now he commands all people everywhere to repent"?
Thank you for taking time to read this. If you chose to repent and accept Jesus as your Savior today, please let us know. We would love to spend some time talking with you. You can contact any of the pastors at Rancho Baptist Church through the church’s email or myself. Even if you do not live close to us in Temecula, California we would love the opportunity to pray with you and help you find a strong Bible believing church in your area.
In Christ’s Love, Pastor Jason