Happy Theology Thursday, ladies! Today’s topic is so important, I wanted to make sure you got it all, so I broke it up into two parts. This is Part 1. Check back later today for Part 2!
The word “Gospel” literally means “good news”. But in order to fully understand this good news, we need to know some pretty bad news first.
This bad news is that all of humanity is fallen and thus sinful. Romans 3:23 tells us that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”. And we don’t just sin, we have a sin nature. It’s who we are – at our core, we are sinners, by nature. We can talk more about sin later, but for now what we need to know is that unredeemed man is a sinner and this is a problem because God is Holy. (We can talk more about what that means later too).
And being Holy, He can’t even look upon sin. It can’t be in His presence. Our sin seperates us from God. And it doesn’t just seperate us from God, but Romans 6:23 tells us that “the wages of sin is death” and Hebrews 9:22 goes on to say that “without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins”. God is just, and wrong must be paid for.
But God, in His gracious love, had a plan to deal with this huge issue of sin even before the first person ever sinned. His perfect plan was to send His Son, fully God, as a man, who would live a perfect life and die a sacrificial death, and rise again on the third day, on behalf of all who would believe.
Because He, being sinless, didn’t need to die for His own sin, His death paid the penalty for the sins of believers. He took the punishment that we deserved. And because He lived a perfect life, and fulfilled every bit of righteousness, His goodness is credited to our accounts. This means we don’t need to work for, or earn, our salvation. He doesn’t save us because of the good things that we do. Instead, the salvation He offers is a free gift for those who believe.
I gave you the first half of Romans 6:23 earlier, and it goes on to say that “the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.” Christ saves us from the penalty of our sins, to the glory of God, in order that we would live for Him. 1 Corinthians 15:3-5 sums up the heart of the Gospel so well that we will end with that, “For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that He was buried, that He was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures”.