Defining “Gospel” – The Big Picture

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“Gospel” means Good News and the entire Bible reveals the Gospel story – from Genesis to Revelation.

An hourglass is a good picture how the Bible presents the Gospel…

Perfection

In Genesis we see God’s perfect design – perfect creation, perfect nature, perfect relationship between God and humanity – even two perfect people. The “hourglass” of the Gospel is wide and covers everything that exists.

Out of God’s love for us and His desire for authentic relationships with us, He gave Adam and Eve the ability to choose whether or not to trust that God was providing them with all they needed.

Fall

Sadly, just like you and I do everyday in multiple ways, Adam and Eve chose to not trust God and we see the Fall. They fell out of perfect relationship with God, nature, and each other. Their lives had previously been described as “without shame,” but now they are “naked and ashamed”. As the descendants of Adam and Eve, this is our story, too.

Immediately, God reveals His plan to bring us back into an authentic relationship with Him – the Gospel.

The rest of the Old Testament reveals the hopelessness of our plans to attempt to return ourselves to perfection.  Yet, story after story also shows us a foretaste – a shadow – of what was to come. From Gensis 3 onward we see the Fall and get glimpses of what Jesus would ultimately come and do perfectly.

Every Old Testament story funnels us toward Jesus. Jesus is the Gospel. Jesus is the Good News!

Reconciliation

The New Testament reveals God coming to us in the person of Jesus. This is unique when compared to every world religion. When you examine all world religions, you’ll find systems of man trying to ascend to God – including much of what is labeled “Christian”. Jesus is the opposite – Jesus is God descending to us. Jesus brought relationship – not religion.

Jesus also brings reconciliation. He comes and fulfills all that God requires for us to be in relationship with Him. This is the focal point and turning point of the Gospel. From here the hourglass widens out again as Jesus’ message of the Good News of God’s grace is spread far and wide.

You and I live in this moment. At this point in the timeline we are able to experience some of the Gospel, but there is still one more piece of the Story to come.

Renewed Perfection

Jesus proclaimed that He is making “all things new!” We can experience a small piece of this right now, as God fills all who believe with His Spirit. Yet, there is much more to come:

New bodies – completely free from sickness and death.

A new earth – where all of creation will be returned to its original perfection.

A new heaven – one that is part of this new world.

I have no idea what all of that will be like, but this I do know – it will be incredible and this is really Good News!

I cannot wait to experience it.

If you want to hear more on this Big Picture Gospel, check out this video.

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