The importance of the gospel cannot be overstated. It is the foundation of the entire Bible and my life. I often mention in my posts the importance of gospel-centered living. But what is that exactly? The Bible says this …
The gospel defined:
“Now I want to make clear for you the gospel that I preached to you … by which you are being saved (if you hold firmly to the message):
Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures, and He was buried, and He was raised on the third day according to the scriptures.”
The gospel was proclaimed from the beginning:
“This gospel He promised beforehand through His prophets in the holy scriptures …
Though the Lord desired to crush Him and make Him ill, once restitution is made, He will see descendants and enjoy long life, and the Lord ’s purpose will be accomplished through Him. Having suffered, He will reflect on His work. He will be satisfied when He understands what He has done, because He willingly submitted to death and was numbered with the rebels, when He lifted up the sin of many and intervened on behalf of the rebels…
And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, proclaimed the gospel to Abraham ahead of time, saying, ‘All the nations will be blessed in you.'”
The gospel is for the worst of us:
“Remember that formerly you, the Gentiles in the flesh, were at that time without the Messiah, alienated from the citizenship of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who used to be far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.
This saying is trustworthy and deserves full acceptance: “’Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners’ – and I am the worst of them! But here is why I was treated with mercy: so that in me as the worst, Christ Jesus could demonstrate His utmost patience, as an example for those who are going to believe in Him for eternal life.”
There is only one gospel message in the Bible:
“But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even though we were dead in transgressions, made us alive together with Christ – by grace you are saved – He raised us up with Him and seated us with Him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, to demonstrate in the coming ages the surpassing wealth of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you are saved through faith, and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God; it is not from works, so that no one can boast.
Now this is the gospel message we have heard from Him and announce to you: God is light, and in Him there is no darkness at all.
He is our peace, the One Who nullified in His flesh the law of commandments in decrees.
I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are following a different gospel – not that there really is another gospel, but there are some who are disturbing you and wanting to distort the gospel of Christ. But even if we (or an angel from heaven) should preach a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be condemned to hell!
The gospel changes our present living:
Now this secret was not disclosed to people in former generations as it has now been revealed to His holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit, namely, that through the gospel the Gentiles are fellow heirs, fellow members of the body, and fellow partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus.
I have been crucified with Christ, and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So the life I now live in the body, I live because of the faithfulness of the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. I do not set aside God’s grace, because if righteousness could come through the law, then Christ died for nothing!
For you were called to freedom, brothers and sisters; only do not use your freedom as an opportunity to indulge your flesh, but through love serve one another. For the whole law can be summed up in a single commandment, namely, “ You must love your neighbor as yourself.
If we live by the Spirit, let us also behave in accordance with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, being jealous of one another.
So then, whenever we have an opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who belong to the family of faith. But may I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. For neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything; the only thing that matters is a new creation!
And all who will behave in accordance with this rule, peace and mercy be on them.”
The gospel changes our present perspective:
“Jesus answered them, ‘Watch out that no one misleads you. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and they will mislead many. You will hear of wars and rumors of wars. Make sure that you are not alarmed, for this must happen, but the end is still to come. For nation will rise up in arms against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these things are the beginning of birth pains. Then they will hand you over to be persecuted and will kill you. You will be hated by all the nations because of My name.’
You are not permitted to know the times or periods that the Father has set by His own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the farthest parts of the earth.
All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached throughout the whole inhabited earth as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.
And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.'”
The gospel changes our future:
“The person who endures to the end will be saved.
Blessed is the one who reads the words of this prophecy aloud, and blessed are those who hear and obey the things written in it, because the time is near! …
And I saw a powerful angel proclaiming in a loud voice: ‘Who is worthy to open the scroll and to break its seals?’ But no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll or look into it. So I began weeping bitterly because no one was found who was worthy to open the scroll or to look into it. Then one of the elders said to me, ‘Stop weeping! Look, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the root of David, has conquered; thus he can open the scroll and its seven seals.’ Then I saw standing in the middle of the throne and of the four living creatures, and in the middle of the elders, a Lamb that appeared to have been killed. He came and took the scroll from the right hand of the one who was seated on the throne, and when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders threw themselves to the ground before the Lamb. Each of them had a harp and golden bowls full of incense (which are the prayers of the saints). They were singing a new song: ‘You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals because you were killed, and at the cost of your own blood you have purchased for God persons from every tribe, language, people, and nation. You have appointed them as a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.’ Then I looked and heard the voice of many angels in a circle around the throne, as well as the living creatures and the elders. Their number was ten thousand times ten thousand – thousands times thousands – all of whom were singing in a loud voice: ‘Worthy is the lamb who was killed to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and praise!’ Then I heard every creature – in heaven, on earth, under the earth, in the sea, and all that is in them – singing: ‘To the one seated on the throne and to the Lamb be praise, honor, glory, and ruling power forever and ever!’
Then I heard what sounded like the voice of a vast throng, like the roar of many waters and like loud crashes of thunder. They were shouting: ‘Hallelujah! For the Lord our God, the All-Powerful, reigns! Let us rejoice and exult and give him glory, because the wedding celebration of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready.'”
And let the one who hears say: “Come!”
And let the one who is thirsty come;
let the one who wants it take the water of life free of charge.