The Gospel of Jesus Christ
"For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes..."
If you are anything like me...
watching the local news can be excruciating. Most of the news is depressing, sorrowful, or frustrating. What little “good” news there may be is often filler and void of any real substance. I think that’s why when we truly hear good news, it excites us…it makes us feel joy. The announcement of a new baby, a wedding engagement, or even seeing the bathroom scale tip a little in our favor; it is in these moments where we can really recognize good news because it impacts our lives and the lives of those we love.
The gospel is good news, in fact that’s what the word means. Good news about what? Well, that is where we have to begin, actually at the very beginning. God created this world we live in, and in it he placed plants, animals, water, air, etc. He also placed a unique creature here, human beings. The Bible tells us in Genesis that God created man and woman in His own image, and that means we are different from all other creatures in that we can know God and commune with Him. That’s right, humans were created to walk with God and enjoy Him and His creation, but we made a catastrophic mistake. Our ancestors in the garden disobeyed God and brought a curse upon mankind…sin. Sin is what separates us from God; and that is a big problem. Paul’s letter to the Romans teaches us that because our first parents sinned long ago, the stain of sin affects us all. We all sin, and because of that we all owe God the penalty for that sin. The Old Testament shows us God’s law, and the purpose of that law is to show us just how Holy God really is, and it highlights the fact that we have no ability to live up to those expectations or be in the presence of that kind of holiness. The penalty for our sin is eternal (yes, eternal) separation from Him.
You may be saying, “ok, that doesn’t sound like good news to me.” You’re right, but the story isn’t over just yet. In order for us to once again enjoy God and have fellowship with Him, we needed that sin penalty to be paid. Unfortunately, you and I do not have that ability…the debt is far too large. But God, being the gracious father that He is sent us a gift. He sent His only Son, Jesus to this earth. He was born into the world through a virgin named Mary, so he was not tainted by the stain of sin incurred by our ancestors. He was fully God and fully man, unique in his own right. He lived a sinless life and while on this earth taught us the right way to live. Though he was sinless and blameless, he was sentenced to death on a Roman cross which was all part of God’s plan to rescue His people from sin and to glorify Himself in doing so. There he died, paying the penalty for the sins of those he came to save. Three days later, he rose from the grave thus conquering the penalty of death for sin. Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection is the good news of this story.
It is only through faith in Jesus that you and I can really be who we were created to be. You see, salvation through faith in Jesus by the grace of God is the only way to live life to its fullest and enjoy the hope of eternity united to Christ in Heaven. Salvation is so much more than “a ticket to Heaven.” Salvation through Jesus Christ gives us a new life that enables us to grow in God’s grace through the ministry of the Holy Spirit, becoming more like Jesus each and every day, to find true joy, peace, and hope that only exists in knowing, loving, and serving Him. No amount of good deeds, trips to church, giving of money, etc. is enough to pay the debt of sin we have. Only Jesus can pay that debt and He offers that gift to you today. Acts 16:31 says, “Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved…” Acknowledge before God that you understand the depth of your sin, your inability to save yourself and believe that the Lord Jesus has paid that penalty for you and has purchased for you with his blood a new life, one that will be characterized by faithful obedience to Him as your Savior and Lord. If the Holy Spirit is working in your heart today, we want to connect with you. We want to help you grow in your understanding of who Jesus Christ is…that is why New Beginnings is so passionate about making disciples.