All About the Gospel
The New Testament uses the term gospel nearly one hundred times in all. What is the gospel? In a nutshell, it is good news (cf. Gal. 3:8). In this broad sense, all of God's word is the gospel. However, generally the term is used in a more specific sense. The New Testament defines the essence of the gospel as the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. This is good news in the sense that the redemption of mankind is made possible as a result. Consider I Corinthians 15:1-4 - "Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you--unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received; that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day, according to the Scriptures."

Let us consider some other inspired truths pertaining to the gospel at this time.

According to II Thessalonians 2:14, we are called to God by means of the gospel. It is a glorious light of Christ that shines brightly (cf. II Cor. 4:4). Our Savior has "abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel" (II Tim. 1:10).

Ephesians 1:13 states that the gospel is the word of truth - "In Him you also trusted, after you heard, the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise".

Paul declared in Romans 1:16 - "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, 'The just shall live by faith.'" The gospel is God's power to save man. We are begotten "through the gospel" (I Cor. 4:15). Consequently, it is our hope (cf. Col. 1:23).

The gospel was sometimes preached "free of charge" (II Cor. 11:7) in order to prevent any hindrances (I Cor. 9:12). However, it is nevertheless true that "the Lord has commanded that those who preach the gospel should live from the gospel" (I Cor. 9:14).

In Galatians 1:6-9, we learn that it is possible to corrupt or distort the gospel message. Those who do such and teach their perverted message to others fall under God's curse. Listen to the words of Paul - "I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed." The gospel must be defended against those who would pervert it (cf. Phil. 1:17).

And finally, those who refuse to obey the gospel will suffer God's eternal wrath when Jesus returns in "flaming fire" to take "vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. These shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, when He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe, because our testimony among you was believed."

Dear friends, have you obeyed the gospel of Christ? Are you a baptized, penitent believer? If so, are you sharing the wonderful gospel message with the world? Jesus commanded His followers in Mark 16:15,16 - "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned." Consider also the latter portion of Romans 10:15 - "How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, who bring glad tidings of good things!" (cf. Eph. 6:15). Woe unto any child of God who does not do what he can to teach the gospel to others (cf. I Cor. 9:16)!