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What is the Gospel?


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Part 3: Experiencing the Gospel

(Content of this section: Finding out what the Good News looks like in the lives of those who believe and receive it.)


How do we see the Good News played out in the lives of those who receive it?

The Good News - the Gospel of the grace of God - is that the Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One) has come. What does this Good News look like in the lives of those who believe and receive it?

Jesus announced what Good News He, the Christ, was bringing and He did this right from the very beginning of His ministry. He did this by reading from the book of Isaiah the prophet. He read,

"The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, Because He has anointed Me To preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives And recovery of sight to the blind, To set at liberty those who are oppressed; To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord."

Luke 4:18 - 19 citing Isaiah 61:1 - 2 - NKJV

(Content of this section: A list of what you can expect to see in the lives of those who receive the Gospel.)


That announcement really does tell us what we can expect to see when the Good News is played out in the lives of those who receive it.

  • We can expect to see those who are brokenhearted getting healed of that inner broken condition in their lives.
  • We can expect to see those who are captive in their lives - whatever form that captivity may take - liberated from that condition of bondage.
  • We can expect to see those who haven’t a capability of seeing in their lives - really seeing - recovering that capability.
  • We can expect to see those who are held down, bowed down under the heaviness of life freed to walk - even run and jump - with a lightness of life.
  • We can expect to see the believers and receivers of the Good News entering into the joyous benefit of a restored relationship with the Lord their God.

(Content of this section: How Jesus established for us the New Covenant, the new relationship of peace with God.)


The Good News is a matter of God’s grace that is delivered into our realm, into our lives, by Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ makes the Good News available and accessible to us both by the consequence of His sacrificial death and by the power of His resurrection. The resurrection brought Him into the Holy of Holies in Heaven where He ministered to establish for us a new relationship with God, one based on what He had accomplished on our behalf, not on what we had accomplished for ourselves. (See the Letter to the Hebrews chapters 9 and 10.)

Our believing the Gospel causes us to come to Christ to accept what He has done for us. He then becomes for us our Saviour, our Redeemer and the Mediator of the New Covenant for us. As a consequence we come into a relationship with God as our Heavenly Father. This relationship is always going to be Good News to us!


So what do we have as a consequence of the Gospel? In those who believe and receive the Good News we see a relationship with God restored to them, a rescuing of their lives from what has been holding them down - or in some way oppressing or consuming them - and a transferring of their lives in soul and in spirit into a better realm of existence!

(Content of this section: The response that's required of you in order for you to experience the Gospel in your life.)


How are we to respond to the Good News so that we can experience it in our lives?

Having discovered how good the Good News is it seems to me most people will want to experience it! So what response do you need to make to it in order to see the Good News in your life?

Let's get an answer to this by going back to the very first thing we heard Jesus calling for when He came to Galilee preaching the Gospel of the kingdom of God. Jesus said,

"The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the gospel."

Mark 1:15 - NKJV

(Content of this section: Discovering the door to reach for in order to enter the kingdom of God.)


The first thing we're told is that the "time is fulfilled." That means this is the moment you've been waiting for, the moment you've heard or sensed would one day come. It is the moment that "the kingdom of God is at hand." That means God's kingdom is now available for you to enter into and it's only a reach away. The reach is for the door to open and walk in through.

Jesus is the door you must reach for and enter in by. There is no other entry way but Jesus and entering by Him brings you into the care of God, the presence of God. In other words it brings you into the household of God or, as we've been referring to it here, into the kingdom of God. Jesus states in this way,

"I am the door. If a man goes in through me, he will be safe and sound; he can come in and out and find his food."

John 10:9 - J.B. Phillips New Testament

(Content of this section: Repent as the first response to the Gospel.)


This is good news! So how are we to respond to this. We've already picked up from what's been said so far that the response required will need to be an active one on our part. Jesus has brought the news, now we need to make an active response. Jesus' call for a response is, "Repent, and believe the Gospel."

The word "repent" conveys action on our part. In its religious sense it "implies pious sorrow for unbelief and sin and a turning from them unto God and the gospel of Christ." In Jesus' call above it is used in its absolute sense and is, therefore, more far reaching in implication. It means "to repent and turn to God from idolatry." This is to make a right about face in life. It's a 180 degree turn around. It's turning to God from ways that ignored, excluded or even denied Him (those ways were replacing Him in your life with something else!) in order to walk with Him by an act of agreeing with Him. Previously you were counting Him out of the picture of life, now you are to be having Him fully in your picture of life! (Quotes are from Complete Word Study Dictionary edited by Spiros Zodhiates)

Repent is the prerequisite for believing in the Gospel. Why? Because Jesus' call to respond is a two part call and the first part - repent - has to be carried out in order for the carrying out of the second part - believe - to become possible. After all, how can you believe in the Good News of God if you have your back to Him and have your eyes on - and therefore your confidence in - the things of self and this world? Therefore the response needed to the Gospel is, "Repent, and believe the Gospel!"

(Content of this section: Believe as the response to the Gospel that follows repent.)


We took time to look in some detail at what repent implied, now let's do the same with the word "believe." Like "repent" the word "believe" is also a call for action. Contrary to the way the world uses the word "believe", the Bible always uses it as a word of substance, a word that launches a person out into actions consequent to his belief. The life of the one who truly turns to believe in the Gospel will never be the same again for he will be a man who embraces that Good News and, as a result, starts acting accordingly.

The Greek word which is translated in our English Bibles as "believe" has in its root the sense of "to drink in." We are, then, to drink this Good News in. We are to take it to heart. We are to make it part of us.

(Content of this section: What it means to believe the Gospel as the way of responding to the Gospel.)


We saw earlier that the Good News is founded on the act of God sending His Son into the world to save us. In believing the Good News we believe that Jesus is God’s Son. We believe that Jesus dying for us obtained for us salvation. We believe that He was raised from the dead by the Glory of the Father and entered into Heaven to establish the New Covenant. The action we are to take as our response in believing is to take this to heart, indeed, to take Jesus to heart as our Lord and Saviour.

The apostle Paul summed up the believing response, the faith response, required of us as follows,

But what does it say? "The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart" (that is, the word of faith which we preach): that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Romans 10:8 - 10 - NKJV

(Content of this section: Responding to the call to believe the Gospel by praying a prayer of faith.)


Respond to the Good News, the Gospel, today! Turn around away from what is called darkness and towards the light that is found in God the Father. Respond to the call to believe the Gospel by praying this prayer,

“Heavenly Father, I accept your Son Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I invite Jesus to come into my heart and life. I believe that Jesus is alive today because You, Father, raised Him from the dead. I accept Him and with Him I accept life - eternal life, the life of God. I now receive my privilege of becoming your child, I renounce citizenship of the kingdom of darkness and receive citizenship of the kingdom of your Son. In Jesus' Name, I pray. Amen.”

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