Have you ever listened to a sermon where the pastor encouraged you to spread the Gospel? You knew the WHAT to Salvation: Jesus gave His life on a cross to save us from eternal punishment. Do you know the WHY/HOW for the Gospel?
We have learned the importance of Words and Definitions in these doctrines, and with every definition we learn, we use it to expand our picture. When you read this current doctrine, you have a chance to fill in the definition for the corresponding Principle.
Do you remember the definitions for Salvation, Reward, and Life?
DOCTRINE #52: THE GOSPEL
The gospel consists of three parts: the death, the burial, and the resurrection of Jesus Christ. These three parts result in, respectively, salvation, reward, and eternal life.
Question: Do you believe you are living out the gospel?
Next Doctrine: Doctrine #53
Table of Contents
If you need it, here is the support from the Word of God...
"1 Now I make known unto you brethren, the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye received, wherein also ye stand,
2 by which also ye are saved, if ye hold fast the word which I preached unto you, except ye believed in vain.
3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which also I received: that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
4 and that he was buried; and that he hath been raised on the third day according to the scriptures;
5 and that he appeared to Cephas; then to the twelve;
6 then he appeared to above five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain until now, but some are fallen asleep;
7 then he appeared to James; then to all the apostles;
8 and last of all, as to the child untimely born, he appeared to me also." (1 Corinthians 15:1-8)
(The gospel has three parts: Christ's death, His burial, and resurrection. Did you see Christ die? Did you see Him get buried? Did you see His resurrection? No. How can you believe it if you have not seen it? Notice, you are saved if you hold fast to the Word in which God spoke. God's Word gives a HOW/WHY, it is non-contradictory, it is truth, and it causes us to grow. Do you think that believing the WHAT of the gospel is enough? Do you think simply SAYing is enough? The gospel was given that we hear, understand, receive, and causes us to stand, which is action: wisdom!)
"19 And on my behalf, that utterance may be given unto me in opening my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel,
20 for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak." (Ephesians 6:19-20)
(How could Paul preach the mystery if the mystery could not be understood? Was Paul the only person able to understand this mystery? If we could never understand this mystery, we would never be able to receive the gospel nor would Paul be able to preach through grace this message. Do you have beliefs you follow that you do NOT understand? Do those beliefs cause you to be in chains? Being in chains is a WHAT. Paul was in chains because he was preaching with boldness the gospel.)
"14 And the Pharisees, who were lovers of money, heard all these things; and they scoffed at him.
15 And he said unto them, Ye are they that justify yourselves in the sight of men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is exalted among men is an abomination in the sight of God.
16 The law and the prophets were until John: from that time the gospel of the kingdom of God is preached, and every man entereth violently into it.
17 But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away, than for one tittle of the law to fall." (Luke 16:14-17)
(The gospel was preached beginning with John the Baptist. When John preached the people were still under the Law, and John's message was that Jesus was going to come and fulfill the Law. Let's review, you can only serve one master. You will either love one and hate the other. The Pharisees were blatantly looking to justify themselves before men, but God knew their causes: the heart.)
"14 And afterward he was manifested unto the eleven themselves as they sat at meat; and he upbraided them with their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they believed not them that had seen him after he was risen.
15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to the whole creation.
16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that disbelieveth shall be condemned." (Mark 16:14-16)
(Jesus told us to go into all the world and preach the gospel: His death, burial, and resurrection. Why did He tell us to preach the gospel?)
"1 Forasmuch then as Christ suffered in the flesh, arm ye yourselves also with the same mind; for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin;
2 that ye no longer should live the rest of your time in flesh to the lusts of men, but to the will of God.
3 For the time past may suffice to have wrought the desire of the Gentiles, and to have walked in lasciviousness, lusts, winebibbings, revellings, carousings, and abominable idolatries:
4 wherein they think strange that ye run not with them into the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you:
5 who shall give account to him that is ready to judge the living and the dead.
6 For unto this end was the gospel preached even to the dead, that they might be judged indeed according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit." (1 Peter 4:1-6)
(The gospel was preached to kill flesh and do the Will of God. It is a contradiction to be following your flesh and following the Spirit at the same time. When we kill our flesh we choose to kill our way of thinking naturally, as men, and choose God's Thinking. The only way for us to do the Will of God is by grace through faith, by taking more and more direction from Him!)
"6 I marvel that ye are so quickly removing from him that called you in the grace of Christ unto a different gospel;
7 which is not another gospel only there are some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ.
8 But though we, or an angel from heaven, should preach unto you any gospel other than that which we preached unto you, let him be anathema.
9 As we have said before, so say I now again, if any man preacheth unto you any gospel other than that which ye received, let him be anathema.
10 For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? or am I striving to please men? if I were still pleasing men, I should not be a servant of Christ.
11 For I make known to you, brethren, as touching the gospel which was preached by me, that it is not after man.
12 For neither did I receive it from man, nor was I taught it, but it came to me through revelation of Jesus Christ." (Galatians 1:6-12)
("Anathema," meant someone who was cursed or excommunicated from the body. The people who were cursed were the ones who were preaching a different gospel than that which was given by God. How many people add to the gospel? How many people have stayed away from the true gospel in order to please men because the TRUE message is uncomfortable and difficult?)
"15 So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you also that are in Rome.
16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
17 For therein is revealed a righteousness of God from faith unto faith: as it is written, But the righteous shall live by faith." (Romans 1:15-17)
(Believing the gospel results in salvation. Who is salvation available to? It is "to every one that believeth". It is not predestinated by God, but it is our choice, our free will. God's Righteousness can flow through us by grace through faith, regardless of if you are a Jew or a Gentile. Remember, the definition of salvation was "the avoidance of a punishment". Jesus' death gave us the ability to avoid punishment. Salvation only comes by Jesus. Jesus' death did not get us to heaven. Jesus' death allows us to avoid eternal punishment...)
"14 Even so did the Lord ordain that they that proclaim the gospel should live of the gospel.
15 But I have used none of these things: and I write not these things that it may be so done in my case; for it were good for me rather to die, than that any man should make my glorifying void.
16 For if I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of; for necessity is laid upon me; for woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel.
17 For if I do this of mine own will, I have a reward: but if not of mine own will, I have a stewardship intrusted to me.
18 What then is my reward? That, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel without charge, so as not to use to the full my right in the gospel.
19 For though I was free from all men, I brought myself under bondage to all, that I might gain the more." (1 Corinthians 9:14-19)
(You gain reward (our righteousness) for preaching the Gospel when it is something that you initiate for the benefit of others in truth and love, meaning you don't get anything in return like money. If preaching the gospel is something that God initiates by grace, we are following God's Will and helping to bring the people into fellowship with Him and the Body. Your actions prove what you believe, so if you proclaim the gospel it will reflect in your actions: in your life. If what you SAY does not match what you DO, it is hypocrisy.)
"29 Else what shall they do that are baptized for the dead? If the dead are not raised at all, why then are they baptized for them?
30 Why do we also stand in jeopardy every hour?
31 I protest by that glorifying in you, brethren, which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.
32 If after the manner of men I fought with beasts at Ephesus, what doth it profit me? If the dead are not raised, let us eat and drink, for to-morrow we die.
33 Be not deceived: Evil companionships corrupt good morals.
34 Awake to soberness righteously, and sin not; for some have no knowledge of God: I speak this to move you to shame.
35 But some one will say, How are the dead raised? and with what manner of body do they come?
36 Thou foolish one, that which thou thyself sowest is not quickened except it die:
37 and that which thou sowest, thou sowest not the body that shall be, but a bare grain, it may chance of wheat, or of some other kind;
38 but God giveth it a body even as it pleased him, and to each seed a body of its own." (1 Corinthians 15:29-38)
(If Jesus was never raised from the dead, there would be no point to the gospel. Jesus' resurrection is what allows us to live with Jesus for eternity. The gospel showed that we are all dead and need to repair/repent from the direction we are heading. This is salvation, for which Jesus died so that He could save us from eternal punishment if we choose. Paul stated he died daily. He killed his flesh every day so that he could take direction from God through the Holy Spirit: grace. Jesus' resurrection allowed Him to give to us the Holy Spirit. Jesus has given us the ability to build, by grace, with God. The effect ought to be that we build with others; not let them corrupt us. Paul stated thinking others can't corrupt us was deception. We can initiate reward by our righteousness towards others...)
"1 Take heed that ye do not your righteousness before men, to be seen of them: else ye have no reward with your Father who is in heaven.
2 When therefore thou doest alms, sound not a trumpet before thee, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, They have received their reward.
3 But when thou doest alms, let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth:
4 that thine alms may be in secret: and thy Father who seeth in secret shall recompense thee.
5 And when ye pray, ye shall not be as the hypocrites: for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have received their reward.
6 But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thine inner chamber, and having shut thy door, pray to thy Father who is in secret, and thy Father who seeth in secret shall recompense thee." (Matthew 6:1-6)
(Remember this passage that covered reward? When Jesus died, He was buried. In the above passage, verse 6 mentioned "shut thy door"... to be buried, out of sight. In fact, in Doctrine #14: HOW/WHY vs. WHAT, we saw every HOW that led to spiritual value (reward) was "in private". Remember, we get our reward now, from men, if our HOW/WHY is publicly to be seen by men. Our ability to get reward is an effect of Jesus' burial. When a person kills their flesh and then tells you about it to get recognition, they aren't "buried". Matthew 6 showed we ought to kill the flesh and then bury it out of sight in order to get reward.)
"12 Now if Christ is preached that he hath been raised from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead?
13 But if there is no resurrection of the dead, neither hath Christ been raised:
14 and if Christ hath not been raised, then is our preaching vain, your faith also is vain.
15 Yea, we are found false witnesses of God; because we witnessed of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead are not raised.
16 For if the dead are not raised, neither hath Christ been raised:
17 and if Christ hath not been raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.
18 Then they also that are fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
19 If we have only hoped in Christ in this life, we are of all men most pitiable.
20 But now hath Christ been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of them that are asleep." (1 Corinthians 15:12-20)
(There was no point to the gospel if there was no resurrection. If Christ died and was not risen from the dead, it will never be applicable to us. If you do not believe that Jesus rose from the dead you do not believe that God is Right and Just (it was Right and Just for God to raise Jesus), you do not have faith, you are pursing comfort because you have fallen asleep, you aren't pursuing growth, and you are a hypocrite. What you believe would be in vain! To SAY that Jesus was a good person, or a good teacher, is a very lukewarm answer that people give when they are talking about Jesus. If you do not believe Jesus was resurrected from the dead, you will die. The demons believe because they see. If you deny a WHAT one day you will face the FACT. This would be nothing more than animal thinking.)
"1 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?
2 God forbid. We who died to sin, how shall we any longer live therein?
3 Or are ye ignorant that all we who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?
4 We were buried therefore with him through baptism unto death: that like as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we also might walk in newness of life.
5 For if we have become united with him in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection;
6 knowing this, that our old man was crucified with him, that the body of sin might be done away, that so we should no longer be in bondage to sin;
7 for he that hath died is justified from sin.
8 But if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him;
9 knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more; death no more hath dominion over him.
10 For the death that he died, he died unto sin once: but the life that he liveth, he liveth unto God.
11 Even so reckon ye also yourselves to be dead unto sin, but alive unto God in Christ Jesus.
12 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey the lusts thereof:
13 neither present your members unto sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves unto God, as alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God.
14 For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under law, but under grace.
15 What then? shall we sin, because we are not under law, but under grace? God forbid.
16 Know ye not, that to whom ye present yourselves as servants unto obedience, his servants ye are whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?
17 But thanks be to God, that, whereas ye were servants of sin, ye became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching whereunto ye were delivered;
18 and being made free from sin, ye became servants of righteousness." (Romans 6:1-18)
(Jesus' process of death, burial, and resurrection is a process that we are to go through as well! We are baptized into the death of our flesh in order that we walk in the Spirit and take direction by grace. Because if we unite with Jesus in the most difficult moment of our life, dying to our flesh, we will be united in Him in His glory, His resurrection! We are now able to be alive in God through Jesus. We have the ability to REPAIR! We are in fellowship with God and the mystery of the kingdom is being revealed to us as we grow in faith and grace, understanding, wisdom, truth, love, and as we continue to learn and use the "chords" that He has given us!)
When we kill our flesh the only thing that is left for us to do is take direction from God. We have emptied ourselves before God, and He can direct our actions.
We learned that fellowship with God involves us sharing our lives deeply with Him, and sharing His causes. Just as we are in fellowship with others by sharing our lives with them, and feeling as though we owe them. We all owe God for the grace He gives us.
We sometimes ask our friends to give us something that we value. That value could be something simple or something complicated. Do we ask God to give us a value? What do we call that?