What is the Gospel?
In order for the Gospel to be what it is—good news—there are essential truths we must first recognize:
- God is holy.
- We are far from holy, hopeless in sin.
- Jesus Christ, who is holy, died in the place of those who are not.
- We enjoy this great salvation through faith in Christ.
Christ lived a perfect, obedient life, dying as the perfect substitute for sinners, and resurrecting on the third day overcoming sin and death. We are then justified in the sight of God, seen positionally as perfect and righteous instead of what we really are—wrath-deserving and arrogant sinners. However this good news means absolutely nothing without first the recognition of ourselves—the bad news.
We are not good people who do wicked things every once in a while, we are wicked people who do what only we can do: wicked things. We have a natural bend towards sin because of the sin of Adam, and we do nothing but act in accordance to that path. It is God Himself who pulls out from sin and does the transforming work, first of showing us ourselves, then pointing to Himself on the cross, and lastly bringing us to repentance and faith in Him.
“The gospel is the good news that the everlasting and ever-increasing joy of the never-boring, ever-satisfying Christ is ours freely and eternally by faith in the sin-forgiving death and hope-giving resurrection of Jesus Christ.”
— John Piper