The Gospel of Christ

"What is the Gospel?" "Does it have the power to change my life?" "Will it save me from death?" These three questions of great depth merit an equally deep answer, which is what I will attempt to explain to the best of my abilities, because your life depends on knowing it.

First of all, the word "gospel" comes from a double translation of a Greek word - euanggelion - [yoo-ang-ghel-ee-on], meaning "good news." Many people (correctly) associate with this word the death, burial, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ (1 Cor 15:3-4). But that's not "good news" for the vast majority of people, because it doesn't have much meaning. It's like if a friend came into the room, looking really excited, and says "there's a solution to the Elephant Problem!" "What elephant?" you ask, startled: "There was a problem with it?" Well, that's what I'm going to explain: mankind's biggest problem in the history of time, and it's solution. What's the biggest problem for the natural man? And what's the solution? Believe it or not, it's the same person:


There is one God who exists in 3 persons - the Father, the Son, and the Spirit (Mt 28:19); an office held by three equal, coeternal persons. Furthermore, God is utterly (thus infinitely) Holy (Isa 6:3, Rev 4:8), infinitely understanding and knowledgeable (Psa 147:5, 1 Jn 3:20), infinitely great in size (1 Kgs 8:27,Psa 139:7-10, Jer 23:23-24), and infinitely good - that is to say, perfect (Mat 5:48). Because He is infinitely good, He is the very definition of "good" (Psa 136:1). Nothing could possibly be more than something infinite. Thus, because He is the greatest good, He is the definition of good. So, something is "good" if it's in agreement with the character of God, and something is "bad" if it's not. For example, "...it is impossible for God to lie..." (Heb 6:18) and "God is not a man, that He should lie," (Num 23:19). It is not physically impossible for God to lie, but logically so. It would be a contradiction to His own nature. Therefore, because God can't do it, it's evil; thus it's forbidden (Lev 19:11). "So," you ask, "Why is He a problem to me?" Well, He has instituted:

His Law

The Law of God is a reflection of His character - just as God is good (Nahum 1:7), so is His law (Psa 119:39). Just as God is eternal (Psa 106:48), so are His Words (Mat 24:35). The Law says "you shall not steal" (Lev 19:11) because God cannot steal (Psa 24:1). And because God is infinitely good (Mat 5:48), so is His law (Psa 19:7). Its very definition is the person of God. Thus, the Law of God is INFINITELY good. Its standard is infinitely great - it demands you to be holy because God is Holy (Lev 11:44-45, Lev 19:2), and it demands you to be perfect because God is perfect (Mat 5:48). It demands you to be infinitely good - that is, perfect - just as God is! Of course, this is rather a large issue: you haven't done that (Rom 3:23, Prov 20:9, 1 Kgs 8:46, Ecc 7:20). You haven't met the one qualification for peace with God. So you can have no peace with God, due to:

Your Rebellion

You have rebelled against the King of kings. Not only have you utterly failed to keep the command to be perfect (Rom 3:10-12, 3:23, 5:12, 5:14, Prov 20:9, Job 14:4, 15:4, 25:4, 1 Jn 1:8), but you live a life of continual rebellion against God: of continually being utterly imperfect. Genesis 6:5 says "Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually." 'Oh, but that was before the flood and Noah's ark,' you protest. 'Surely now mankind is better, having learnt from the error of his ways?' No! Look what God says almost immediately afterwards, in Genesis 8:21: "The LORD smelled the soothing aroma; and the LORD said to Himself, "I will never again curse the ground on account of man, for the intent of man's heart is evil from his youth..." Your nature is just as corrupt as theirs was, if not more so! It hasn't changed for the better. Every thought of your heart is only on evil continually - yea, from your youth. You are utterly incapable of doing any good - your best good works that you've ever done is as filthy rags before a Holy and Magisterial God (Isa 64:6, Job 14:4, Rom 8:8) - even if that includes "praising" Him in a church-building (Isa 29:13)!

     "But, I've never stolen or murdered or committed adultery! Surely that counts for something!" you cry. Actually, you have stolen. Think hard enough and you'll remember - perhaps you were being paid for doing work when you were actually laying around. Perhaps you took credit for something you never did. That means you're a thief. Likewise, you have murdered if you have ever had an evil thought against someone (1 Jn 3:15) - that makes you a murderer. And you have certainly committed adultery; have you looked on a anyone with lust in your heart? "Yes." Well then, "“You have heard that it was said, ‘YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY’; but I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart." (Mat 5:27-28). So you are an adulterer. Have you ever talked lightly about or misused the name of God? "Yes." That's called blasphemy (Ex 20:7, Lev 24:14-16); thus making you a blasphemer. Has anything in your life ever been more important to you than the Lord Jesus Christ and serving Him? Have you ever valued something more than Him? Of course you have. That's called idolatry, making you an idolater. You see, you have broken every law God has ever made. But even if you had, as impossible as it may be, only sinned once - imagine with me - just lied once, according to God, that's the same as breaking every single law (Jas 2:10). 

     You see, this is what happens when we play around with an Infinite Law. The "smallest" law, if it is infinite, is not small at all (Mat 5:19) - it's positively gargantuan. You're a thief, a murderer, an adulterer, a blasphemer, an idolater, but they all scream the same thing: FALLEN, FALLEN, FALLEN! You are fallen - cut off from God (Isa 53:6, 59:2)! Oh, the multitude of verses that testify to your hideousness before a beautiful God! "Yet," you cry, "surely God will forgive a hateful being like me just because God is loving, right?" No, of course not, because that would be the opposite of:


Now if God is indeed infinitely good (Mat 5:48), then the Law based in Him, being a reflection of His Infinitely Good Person, is also logically infinitely good (Psa 19:7). Thus every violation of this infinitely good law is of an infinitely bad nature because it violates an infinite law (1 Jn 3:4) - thus the person doing such horrendous crimes must logically also be infinitely evil (thus Paul, in 1 Ti 1:15). Now justice demands a fair punishment for a crime (Prov 24:23-25): and because the crime is infinite in nature, the only fair punishment must also be infinite in magnitude. No, you do not deserve something infinitely good (Heaven)! Neither do you deserve to just sort of die and fade out of existence. 

No, you deserve an infinitely grave punishment; this is called "Hell" in the Bible. It is the furious flaming wrath of God (Jer 30:23-24, Rev 14:10-11, 20:15, Psa 11:5-6, Psa 21:8-9, Isa 34:2-3), and it is eternal (Mat 25:46, Isa 33:14, Rev 14:11). There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth in this pit of destruction (Mat 13:41-42, 13:49-50, Psa 55:23); for it is God's vengeance upon His adversaries (Deut 32:40-42, Nah 1:2-6); against whom God is angry with the wicked everyday (Psa 7:11b). You see, God is just, and if you can't satisfy His justice with something infinitely good, you will burn in Hell-fire for all eternity! 

As J. Edwards said, "When you look forward, you shall see a long for ever, a boundless duration before you, which will swallow up your thoughts, and amaze your soul; and you will absolutely despair of ever having any deliverance, any end, any mitigation, any rest at all. You will know certainly that you must wear out long ages, millions of millions of ages, in wrestling and conflicting with this almighty merciless vengeance; and then when you have so done, when so many ages have actually been spent by you in this manner, you will know that all [that] is but a point to what remains." 

"How then can His justice be satisfied?" Well, contrary to the popular and common thoughts about this matter, there is really:

One Way Only

So, the question now is: "What can I possibly do to escape the furious flames of God's anger? How can I be saved?" Well, right after being told that it is almost impossible for a rich man to enter Heaven, the disciples of Christ asked Him the same question: "When the disciples heard this, they were greatly astonished and said, “Then who can be saved?” And looking at them Jesus said to them, “With people this is impossible..." (Mt 19:25-26) Note Jesus' reply. He did not say "unlikely," or "hard to do," but impossible. "With people" it is impossible. If you try to save yourself, or get together with a bunch of other people; in a church-building, in an organization, or in a "religion", you're not going to succeed. Why not? 

     Because you are a finite person who has broken an infinite law, placing an infinitely negative charge upon your head. Just to lessen your future torment you would have to live a life of continual perfection (of continually doing infinitely good things) for the rest of your life. The problem is, you can't even do something finitely good (Rom 3:10-12, Isa 64:6), let alone something infinitely so. God demands complete and utter perfection in obeying every single law He has ever stated (Mt 5:48). So it's quite hopeless for you if you look at yourself for salvation (Mt 19:26, Mk 10:27); the price is just too high (Psa 49:7-9). Furthermore, the Bible confirms this: it states that salvation just simply does not come from works (Eph 2:8-9, Gal 2:16); you're not saved from God's wrath because you do things that you and others call "good". In fact, God says that every single one of your "good" works - even the very "best" thing you've ever done is as a filthy rag before Him (Isa 64:6). 

     Think of a criminal who breaks into your house and murders your entire family, leaving only you alive. There are people all around the house who see him break in (one even caught it on video). The police are called, they quickly arrive and he is later taken to court, and you go there and testify. There are many witnesses there, the video is presented, DNA and blood tests prove his guilt, and finally even the murderer himself acknowledges his crime. At the end of the trial, the judge stands up and says to the murderer "It's incredibly evident that you are guilty of a multi-homicide. I just have a little question: do you feel bad for doing it?" The criminal replies, "Yes, I feel guilty." "Well then, because I'm such a nice guy and you feel bad, you can go free!" 

What would you think about the justice of such a judge? The man's more corrupt than the criminal! Yet if you are just hoping God will forgive you because He is loving or because you feel bad, then you honestly believe that God is over ten times as evil as this unrighteous judge! You believe that God is evil and unrighteous - and you believe it so much you're willing to bet your soul on it by living like God doesn't hate your sin. 

But God isn't an unrighteous judge - He is the very definition of justice (Psa 7:11, 2 Th 1:6), and He will not ignore your sin even though you try to cover it up with so-called "good works" (Nahum 1:3). "Alright," you admit, "I know that I cannot save myself by doing anything - is there then no hope for man?" Remember that verse quoted right at the beginning of this section? "...for man this is impossible..." - Jesus didn't stop there: "...but for God, all things are possible." (Mat 19:26) So, if there is salvation, only God is capable of rendering it. He is not unjust if He does not provide a way (Rom 9:20-22), seeing as how we will all receive exactly what we deserve anyways - Hell (Rom 3:23; 6:23). But if a way is possible, it can only come from God (Mat 19:26). Now, this is where the word "gospel" has meaning - because there are good news - God has made a way (Jn 14:6)! The name of the Way is:

Jesus Christ

Approximately 2015 years ago, Jesus Christ was born of a virgin (Isa 7:14, Mat 1:18-25, Lk 1:31-37), that is to say, pure (1 Jn 3:3), without sin (2 Cor 5:21), undefiled (Heb 9:14), and never sinned even once (Jn 8:46, 1 Pt 2:21-22, 1 Jn 3:5). Because Jesus added onto His eternal nature (Heb 13:8) the nature of man (Jn 1:14, Phil 2:7, Heb 2: 9,14) he was able to live as a human, completing all the laws (Mat 5:17). But He was (and is), furthermore, wholly God (Jn 1:1,14, Phil 2:6, Col 2:9) - which means He has infinite worth. Now, look at Isaiah 53:5 "But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed." "Wait a second," you may keenly observe, "When was Jesus ever crushed?"

Well, when Jesus died upon the cross, He took upon himself all the wretchedness, vileness, and the black filth of the sins of the elect (the past, present, and future believers) (Jn 10:11, 15-16, Heb 9:28) - and He became that sin on the cross, as it says in 2 Corinthians 5:21, "He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." So Jesus literally took onto Himself and became the sin of the sheep of God. The believers, the moment they believed, had it no longer; it was taken from them (1 Jn 3:5). Then God the Father, seeing Jesus Christ, having taken the elect's sin onto Himself, left Him abandoned on the cross (Mat 27:46), for God cannot look on unclean things (Hab 1:13). Jesus did not become a sinful being on the cross (Heb 13:8), but rather was legally declared to be so in the place of sinners and He was treated accordingly (Rom 5:8).

Then, the full flaming wrath of God - all His furious and just rage against the sins of the multitude of sinners, being infinite in nature due to the infinite wickedness of the sins themselves, was poured out on Jesus Christ. He drank the wrath of God (Jn 18:11, Psa 75:8, Rev 14:10). That is Hell. Don't be mistaken and think Hell is some dark underground cave with lava pits and Satan is with his demons running around with pitchforks. Hell is God's flaming FURY (Zep 1:18, 3:8) - and that is what Christ drank on that cross. And so Christ was crushed by the wrath of God. Isaiah 53:10 says "The LORD was pleased to crush Him." So Christ died in the place of many sinners on the cross (Isa 53:11-12) - why? So He could:

1) Take the legal punishment for their sins - what they deserve (Rom 6:23, Heb 2:9), 
2) Purchase these elect ones with His own blood (Ac 20:28),
3) Purchase their faith to be given to them later as a gift (Ep 2:8),
4) Take away the penalty of the Law which says to them "You are guilty!" (Col 2:13-14) by doing "1),"
5) Give them His own infinite righteousness (Rom 3:23-25, 8:3-4). 

All this and a thousand things more were done on the cross, and this perfection, this righteousness of Christ is imputed to, or reckoned to, or counted as if it belongs to the believer when he believes it with (the gift of) faith (Rom 1:17, Eph 2:8). All of this happened when Jesus uttered one simple word just a moment before He died "Tetelestai" - meaning - "It is finished" (Jn 19:30).

After dying for the sins of many sinners under the horrendous wrath of God, He was buried and He rose from the dead three days later (1 Cor 15:4)! The fact that He rose from the dead means that those He died for really were justified (Rom 4:25)! It means He really is the God who lives forever (Rev 1:18; Deu 32:39-40), and He was an acceptable offering, credited to the offerer, pure, and takes away all sin (Lev 7:17-18). No man has ever risen from the dead in His own strength but Christ, the Son of God (John 10:18). 

Thus we see that man's greatest problem is God, and His just wrath against them. We also see that the only solution is the same One, who out of ardent love sent His Son to die for His sheep (Jn 3:16). "What am I expected to do now," you ask, "knowing all of this?" Well, Jesus commands you, right now, to:

Repent and believe!

He is the way, the truth, and the life (Jn 14:6). He has been under the wrath of God in order to give His righteousness to those that had abhorred Him. So He rightly commands everyone to "...Repent and believe the gospel!" (Mk 1:15, Ac 17:30) "But how? What does it mean to repent? And what does it mean," you ask, "to believe?". To cut to the quick,
1) It means to feel aching, bitter, guilty sadness and sorrow over sin (2 Cor 7:10)
2) It is abandon your sin, your sinful life, all your possesions and everything your are (Mat 10:37-39)
3) It is to look to Christ with a trusting heart that He took away your sins (Rom 10:9-13)!
"What will it cost?" Everything (Lk 14:33). You will be persecuted, (Mat 10:17-19), hated (Mat 10:21-22, 1 Jn 3:13), you will struggle against the sinful desires of the natural self (Gal 5:16-17) and the the forces of darkness (Ep 6:12). Yet Christ will save you. You will be freed from sin forever.

If you do this, God promises to save you. If you let go of everything you trust and throw yourself over the edge of oblivion and trust Christ to save you, He will. Because He is faithful (2 Tim 2:13). You will find rest in Christ (Mat 11:28-30). A man of God summarizes all this as this: "Jesus promises you two things: a cross to die on and eternal life."

Just give it all to Jesus. Believe from your heart (Rom 10:9-10) that He died for you! Call on Him and do not cease to call on His name until He saves you (Rom 10:11-13)! Believe that He Himself bore all your sins, took them away from you! If you do this, God promises to save you. Let go of everything you trust in, and throw yourself over the edge of eternity, trusting that He will catch you.

Believing doesn't result in salvation, but being a gift from God (Ep 2:8), means He has saved you! Stop thinking that anything, even repentance and faith can save you. Realize you are incapable of even that without God's gracious work in you. Just give up on depending on yourself, and look to Christ! If you feel repentant, if you feel an ache over your sin and sorrow for your way of life, all that remains is for you to believe! Trust Him.

This is what I know God is telling you right now:

"Turn to Me and be saved, all the ends of the earth..." (Isa 45:22)

Now, I cannot faithfully share the gospel with you without informing you of the warnings for those that deny it, either by word or by action. What follows are the final:

"For this reason we must pay much closer attention to the things that have been heard, so that we do not drift away. For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, and every transgression and disobedience received a just penalty, how will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation?" (Heb 2:1-3a)

"For if we go on sinning wilfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a terrifying expectation of judgment and THE FURY OF A FIRE WHICH WILL CONSUME THE ADVERSARIES. Anyone who has set aside the Law of Moses dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much severer punishment do you think he will deserve who has trampled under foot the Son of God, and has regarded as unclean the blood of the covenant by which He was sanctified, and has insulted the Spirit of grace? For we know Him who said, “VENGEANCE IS MINE, I WILL REPAY.” And again, “THE LORD WILL JUDGE HIS PEOPLE.” It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God." (Heb 10:26-31)

This leads us to our:

Final Note

If you believe you have repented of your sins and given your life to Christ, having truly believed in Him from your heart, and if you believe you are saved, take note: time will tell. In Matthew 7 we find Jesus telling His disciples two important things: 1) There is not only a narrow gate to life, but a narrow path to it as well (Mat 7:13-14) and 2) You can tell true Christians from false "Christians" by their fruit; by how they act (Mat 7:15-20) - this means that if you truly believed and you are saved, you will walk like how Jesus walked (1 Jn 2:6). You will become more and more like Him; holier and holier (1 Jn 3:3). Yes, you will fail and sin, but there will be a struggle. You will be a changed person. You will be born again (Jn 3:3ff).

When God meets and saves a man, like a famous preacher says, it's like being hit by a train. You don't walk away from that unchanged. Ezekiel 36:25-27 describes expiation - how the sin from a man is taken out from him and how He is regenerated by the Holy Spirit. You will desire God after being saved, not sin. Your entire way of living will be changed. He will put a new Spirit in you and cleanse you from all your old idols. So watch yourself - look to see if you're becoming more and more like Jesus. If 10 years later you're doing the same thing, addicted to the same stuff, walking the same walk, you were never saved. Because when Jesus saves a man, He is faithful to complete the work He started (Phil 1:6).

 ""Come now, and let us reason together," says the LORD, "Though your sins are as scarlet, they will be white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they will be white as wool."
- Isaiah 1:18

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