In the United States and much of western civilization we hear the word “gospel” used quite often, especially in religious commentaries. But, what does the word “gospel” mean, really?” I would like to address this word in this article.
The meaning of the word “gospel”
The word “gospel” is used in the Bible and is translated from a Greek word which means “good news”. This word “gospel” is one that is prevalent in the New Testament. It is not a word found in the Old Testament. From this we might gather that the “good news” is something that is connected with the New Testament, or New Covenant, but not necessarily with the Old Testament, or Old Covenant.
So, if the “Gospel” is good news and the Old Testament was not necessarily associated with good news, why was there a need for good news?
The bad news
“Good news” must find its “good” in relation to news which is not “good”. That means that there was some “bad news”. So what is the bad news?
To find out the bad news we must go back to almost the beginning of creation. Contrary to the lie that has been spread by secular materialistic humanists, the universe we observe is not billions of years old. Rather, the creation that we observe was brought into being about 6000 or so years ago. How do we know this? The Holy Bible has a clear and definitive description of how the universe and all that is in it came into being in the first two chapters of the book of Genesis. In the book of Genesis we find out how the God of creation brought everything into being by the Word of His power.
The apex of His creation was the man, Adam. From Adam He created Eve to be Adam’s helpmate, co-equal in every respect. All creation was perfect and the Creator described it as “very good”, or perfect in every way.
So, if everything was perfect, where is the bad news? The Creator is a God of love and because He loved His ultimate creation, man and woman, He wanted them to be able to experience the ultimate joy, which is loving one another and loving their Creator. But, you see, there cannot be love without there being a choice. To program a response in someone is to make them an automaton, not a living person with the ability to choose. So God planted a special garden in Eden. In that garden were plants that fulfilled every desire imaginable to the mind. Out of all the plants God chose one which He established as the only tree of which mankind could not partake of. All the other trees were theirs to partake of and use as they saw fit. But, of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil they were not to partake of. By honoring this mankind would show his love for his Creator. But, if Adam and Eve were to eat of the forbidden tree they would by so doing declare that they did not love their Creator.
There was a warning that came along with the stipulation of not eating of the forbidden tree. That warning was that in the day that they ate of the tree that they would surely die. That was a foreign concept to Adam and Eve because they had no idea what “death” was. There was no death at that time.
Now for the “bad news”. Because Adam and Eve fell for the lie of the serpent, they ate of the forbidden tree. Because they ate of the forbidden fruit they introduced “death” into the perfect creation that God had made. God, in His great love and mercy instituted a substitutional sacrifice for the death of His highest creation and man’s ultimate death was delayed by the substitutional sacrifice of and “innocent” animal when God provided skins for the covering of their nakedness.
Nevertheless, mankind began to die. The Biblical term in describing what began translates as “in dying you shall die”. As we have learned more about our DNA we have learned how each time the cells of our bodies regenerate they lose information, or gain mutations and in the end will bring about death of the material body in which we dwell.
The bad news is that death has entered the creation and all will die.
The Good News
In 1 Corinthians 15:22 we find the “Good News” in a nut shell. “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive!”
Here is the contrast. If you wish to follow your earthly father, Adam, and rebel against your Creator, then you will not only die physically, but will ultimately die spiritually. How can you know that you will not die spiritually? You can know because Jesus arose from the dead thereby conquering death and the sin that brought about death.
What would be your response if you knew for certain that when this existence on earth was ended that you would spend eternity with a loving Creator Who has prepared a blissful new creation in which there is perfection as He had intended for the original? Well, let me tell you, that is the “Good News” of what Jesus has purchased for you.
Just as The Creator gave Adam a choice to either obey His covenant and not eat of the forbidden tree or not obey, He still gives you the free choice of either to accept the gift of grace that He offers you through the substitutional death of His only-begotten Son, Jesus, Who knew no sin but became sin for us, or you may reject His gift and not love Him as He has loved you. He loves you enough that He allows you to make your own choice.
What I recommend is that before you make a final decision that you get all the facts. The best place to get all the facts is the Holy Bible. The Bible has proven itself to be factual and truthful in all its claims and its historical recordings. If you will not accept the truths of the Bible then you will forever squander in the ever evolving “truths” of human imperfection and downright lies.
But, no matter what your decision is, it will be yours and no one else’s. You are precious to your Creator and He will honor your choice. But be aware of the “Bad News”. If you choose to rebel against your Creator, as Adam did, then be aware that there is a place where you will spend eternity(eternity is never ending). That place is a place prepared not for mankind but was prepared for rebellious angels, the chief of whom is Satan. It is a place of torment and anguish which the human mind cannot conceive of. I implore you, do not go there. But if you exercise your God given right and ability and do not choose to commit your life to the Lordship of Jesus, you will go there and be tormented forever.
You may be thinking that you will be able to choose once you die. Do not believe that lie. The Bible says that it is appointed unto man once to die, and after that the judgment. Once you die, there are no more choices. There is only judgment.
Another word of warning. Jesus said in John chapter 3, “He that believes is not condemned, but he that believes not is condemned already.” So, if you do not consciously make a commitment to the Lord Jesus, you are already going to hell. Do nothing and you will go to hell.
Once again, I implore you. Choose Jesus. Choose life. Receive the “Gospel”
The “Good News” is that God, through His only-begotten Son, has done everything necessary for you to spend eternity with Him in eternal bliss and creativity. You may receive it by simply believing Him and giving your life to Him. In return, He will give you His life and give it in abundance beginning right now and going on for eternity.
I have experienced this “Good News” for over fifty years and it is getting better and better every day.
God loves you! Repent and believe the “Good News” today!
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