The Gospel is at the heart of the Christian faith, and it means “good news.” It stands in sharp contrast with most religions, because while most religions fall under the category of “good advice,” Christianity is at its core “good news.” It is not primarily a list of habits to adopt or a list of rules to obey, but it is a story that is to be entered into and experienced.
The story of the Gospel is both the most important story of history and the most relevant experience in our lives today. It is paradoxically simple and complex at the same time. What is it?
God created the universe, and the pinnacle of his creation was humanity. We humans are image-bearers of God, manifestations of God’s glory, and representatives of God’s character. We were wired to be extensions of the God-family (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), and we were intended to exist in community with God and with one another.
However, we chose to rebel and reject their relationship with God. In doing so, we lost our status as members of God’s family. Furthermore, because God is the true source of all that is good, the rejection of God can only lead to brokenness and death. The human experience is now characterized by sorrow, suffering, and strife.
But God chose to rescue us. About 2000 years ago, God sent his Son Jesus Christ to become a human being, die a gruesome death, and rise from the dead in victory. Through this glorious invasion of the broken world, God permanently committed himself to us, rescued us from death, and restored us into union with him.
By repenting and trusting in Jesus, we are adopted into God’s family (the church) and are transformed into who humans were always intended to be. As we do so, we pioneer the values of the incoming new creation—love, peace, and justice—in anticipation of the day when Jesus will return again and make all things right.