Do you know the Gospel?

This question represents the most important topic of all time, and the answer to this question is assumed by most who might be confronted by it. Think for a moment… What would you say if someone walked up to you while you stood in line at the grocery store and asked you, “What is the Gospel?” Well? Would you tell them that Jesus has made your life better? Would you start to tell them about your church? Would you confuse them with several unfamiliar words and look down on them for not understanding what you’ve vaguely communicated? Would you tell them to say a special prayer?
 
While there may be many ideas flying around about what to say or how to say it, I’d like to help provide a simple way to remember what to say in any context. That’s right, I said you can be prepared to share the Gospel in any context, with any person from any culture, and even with those you know best. Four words that will help you remember the Gospel and share it well are these: God, Man, Christ, and Response.
 
Beginning with God, and working your way through each of the following words, you should be able to articulate a complete Gospel presentation. The more familiar one is with the message of the Gospel, the more easily one will be able to present this message, and the less time it will take him or her to do it.
 
Remember that the Gospel is not just for sinners who have never heard it, but the Gospel is for those who assume they know it already. The Gospel is for those who grew up in a church. The Gospel is for those who hate religion. The Gospel is for those who love religion, but hate Christianity. The Gospel is for those who love the idea of Christianity, but have little time for Jesus or church. The Gospel is for those who struggle on an island of despair, incapable of understanding how a holy God could love someone so wicked. The Gospel is for those who live a fairly adventurous life and seek fulfillment in various temporal pleasures. The Gospel is for those who live very respectable lives and seem to be unaffected by many temptations of the world. In case you haven’t noticed the pattern by now, the Gospel is for everyone, everyday, all day, and always.
 
So, what is the Gospel?
 

GOD – Genesis 1:1; Psalm 25:8-10

God is creator and sustainer. He is good, righteous, and just.
 

MAN – Genesis 1:31, 3:6-7; Romans 1:18-32, 3:9-19

Man was created good, but disobeyed God’s command and fell into sinful depravity. All humans are guilty before God for what they do, what they do not do, and for what they are. Because of their guilt, all sinners are under the just wrath of God.
 

CHRIST – John 1:1-14; Romans 3:21-26; Ephesians 2:1-9

God, motivated by gracious love, sent His Son to live as a real and faultless man, to die as a guilty sinner, and to arise from death as the King of glory. Jesus Christ is the righteous substitute for guilty sinners, and He exchanges His perfect goodness for the sinner’s utter depravity. Jesus, the righteous and holy one, is counted as guilty so that sinners, who are deserving of God’s justice, may be counted as righteous and holy. This is the marvelous announcement of Good News! 
 

RESPONSE – Mark 1:15; John 5:24; Ephesians 1:3-14; 1 John 3:23-24

The only right response to such Good News is trust, belief, or faith. All three of these are essentially the same, and they simply refer to the sinner trusting in who Christ is and what He has done on their behalf. Of course, trusting in the person and work of Christ includes repentance. This is the turning away from unbelief and sin and turning towards trust and obedience concerning Christ.
 
It is also helpful to remember that Christians are rescued from God’s wrath in order to be brought into God’s family. God saves sinners from something – namely their guilt and God’s wrath – and God also saves sinners into something – God’s family. No local church is perfect, but a faithful local church is the God-established context for every Christian life (Titus 1:5, 3:1; Philemon 1:1, Hebrews 13:1-18).
 
 
If this has been helpful for you, or if you have any questions about this post, then email pastor@fbcdiana.org
 

 

Here are some Gospel presentations that will help you see how others navigate this path with brevity, but some are more successful at the brevity part than others.