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Bible Q

What is the gospel?

What is the gospel?
The old English word “gospel”, literally “good news”, has its roots in the Old Testament where the Hebrew verb “basar” meant to carry good news:
How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!” (Isaiah 52:7 NIV)
This Hebrew verb “to bring good news”, in the Greek Old Testament became the verb evangelizo, used of bringing good news, most typically of a military victory, but also in a wider sense of proclaiming the kingdom of God, as in Isaiah above. The Greek New Testament introduces the noun evangelion, the piece of good news, the glad tidings, the happy message. And this becomes a central concept in the New Testament where the term is used 77 times, and the verb another 55 times.
The Gospel of the Kingdom
Initially in the four gospels, the “gospel” is “the gospel of the kingdom”. Which primarily is understood as the restoration of Israel and the coming of the Messiah as king. This is the primary use of gospel in the Bible – the good news about the coming kingdom of God. However with the inclusion of the Gentiles into that kingdom Paul and the other apostles make it clear that the good news and the kingdom were never intended to be limited to Jews only:
Scripture foresaw that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, and announced the gospel in advance to Abraham: “All nations will be blessed through you.” (Galatians 3:8)
That the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel: (Ephesians 3:18)

The good news about the death and resurrection of Christ

Additionally Paul relates his gospel directly to Christ: Paul writes that this is the Gospel

“I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. By this Gospel you are saved” – which is that Christ died for our sins, according to the Scriptures … he was buried. . . . The third day he rose again from the dead, according to the Scriptures (1 Cor. 15:1-6)
Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, descended from David: this is my Gospel (2 Tim. 2:8)
So from this we can see that the gospel in the New Testament is mainly around three things:
  • the kingdom on earth, the restoration of Israel
  • the inclusion of believers from all nations
  • the death and resurrection of Jesus

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