I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.
These are strong words, are they not? They illustrate how important it is to not be deceived by a false gospel. God gave us these words through the Apostle Paul in the first century. There are many false gospels today. Among them are false gospels that declare salvation is by:
grace plus works
trusting in a "sinner's prayer"
the "golden rule"
trusting in a false, worldly "jesus”
It is rare in our present day to hear a faithful presentation of the Gospel. The word "Gospel" means "good tidings" or "good message". Perhaps the clearest explanation of the Gospel is presented in the following passage:
Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand; By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how 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:
I Corinthians 15:1-4
The Gospel contains three inseparable parts: the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. This is good tidings for those who come to Christ for salvation.
This was not the death of just anyone, it was the death of the Creator of the universe, the promised Messiah, the spotless Lamb of God, the Lord of Heaven, the King of kings.
This was not any kind of death, but the death of the cross. This fulfilled scripture (Psalm 22:16-18), proving that he was the very Christ.
It was a death for a specific reason: for our sins (all of our sins). Prior to salvation we are all lost sinners (Romans 3:10) - condemned by the law (Romans 3:19) and heading for eternal punishment in the lake of fire. Jesus Christ loved us so much that he bore our sins upon the cross so that we would not have to experience this punishment. he was our innocent substitute.
His burial proved that he was dead - that he had paid the penalty for our sin (Romans 6:23).
His burial fulfilled scripture (Isaiah 53:9), proving that he was the promised Saviour.
His resurrection fulfilled the words of King David in the Old Testament (Psalm 16:10).
His resurrection fulfilled Jesus' own promise that he would rise from the dead on the third day (Matthew 16:21), proving that he was God.
His resurrection shows that his sacrifice was completely accepted by his Father and that he conquered sin and death.
If you are lost, this is what God is saying to you today:
Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.
If you are saved, this is what God is saying to you today:
And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.
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