What is the Gospel?
Christians unceasingly speak of it. Pastors preach it with undying passion. Men have given their very lives for the sake of it. What am I speaking of? It is, of course, the message of the “good news” or “gospel” of Jesus Christ. This gospel, or more accurately in the Greek, “glad tidings,” is the very heart and soul of Christianity. It is the message of hope Christians are to bring to a lost and dying world, and its focus is centered on the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ. It is the good news that God’s only begotten Son came into the world and took upon Himself the sin of the world, was nailed to a cross for our sins, and was raised from the dead thus completing the victory over death and the grave. It is, without a doubt, the greatest news that one could ever hear.
Sadly, the very ones who are entrusted to take this gospel to the whole world do not fully understand the power that is found in its message, so instead of proclaiming the complete victory of the Cross, orthodox Christianity instead emphasizes the consequences of sin and the vengeance of God. That Christ is being preached, there can be no doubt; that His death and resurrection is being proclaimed throughout the world, we find little fault; but that the “orthodox” understanding of the scope of Christ’s work is being accurately presented to the world, here we find grave error, and in finding thus, we are forced to expose and confront it with the same passion that comes from those who preach the false notion that most men will never experience the benefits of the good news.
The “full” gospel message is this:
Jesus Christ came to do the will of the Father (Jn. 5:30), and the will of the Father is that “…all men be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth.” (1 Tim. 2:4) To accomplish that will, Christ made Himself of no reputation, took upon Himself the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of sinful men. (Phil. 2:7; Rom. 8:3) He humbled Himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the Cross, (Phil. 2:8) and by dying in the same manner as men, He tasted death for EVERY man. (Heb. 2:9) Jesus is really and actually the Savior of ALL men, (1 Tim. 4:10), has taken away the sin of the world (Jn. 1:29; Rom. 5:18), and is the propitiation (covering) for the sins of the world (1 Jn. 2:2). Through the power of His resurrection, He has taken away the sting of death and the grave (1 Cor. 15:55), takes away the fear of death (Heb. 2:14), and gives men assurance that they will one day be raised from the dead and be judged (Acts 17:31). What man could not do for himself (deliver himself from sin and death), God did by sending His only Son. (Rom. 8:3) The good news for all men (Lk. 2:10) is that God’s will to save them has already been accomplished by Christ in heaven (Jn. 19:30), and will become a living reality on earth—in God’s timetable, not man’s. (1 Cor. 15:22; 1 Tim. 2:6)
That is the “full” gospel (the good news) in a nutshell. Yes, in order for men to experience the benefit of what Christ has done, each must confess with his mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe (by faith) in his heart that God has raised Him from the dead (Rom. 10:9), but the good news is that because of what Christ has done, both the confession and belief have been secured, the salvation to be received either in this age or in the ages to come—the resurrection of Christ ensures that none will be lost (Mt. 18:12-14; 1 Cor. 15:22). The whole idea that “if a man doesn’t confess Christ in this life he is forever cursed” is not taught in the Holy Scriptures. Jesus took the curse (Gal. 3:13) and paid the penalty for the consequences of man’s sin. The false doctrine that says that most will suffer endless punishment makes God’s ability to perform His will impotent because of the “free will” of man or the schemes of the evil one, and even worst, makes Christ’s death a miserable failure in that only a few will be able to take advantage of this grace. In either case, Jesus isn’t really the savior of all men, but simply “wants” to be. In other words, Christ is only the Savior of men IF men receive the gift. This is unscriptural and puts man in the driver’s seat, not God.
The love of God and His judgments work harmoniously together to effect His will (Eph. 1:11) in order that He might sum up all things in Christ (Eph. 1:10), reconcile all to Himself (Col. 1:20), and make all things new (Rev. 21:4, 5).
We pray you would find your time spent at Savior-of-All.com profitable and that God will lead you and guide you into all truth.
May we be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height;
And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.
Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us.
Unto Him be the glory in the Church and in—unto all the generations of the age of ages; Amen.
For information on why punishment is not “eternal,” go to: http://www.savior-of-all.com/aionian.html
For information on the purpose of God’s punishment, see: http://www.savior-of-all.com/perfect.html
For information on why man does not have a “free” will, go to: http://www.savior-of-all.com/freewill.html
For passages dealing with God’s salvation, see: http://www.savior-of-all.com/cross.html
An introduction to Savior-of-All.com