What is the Gospel?
Daily Reading: (Mark 16:15):
“He said to them, Go into all the world and preach the Gospel to all creation.”
Something to know about this verse is that the church is just about to begin. The church starts at Pentecost when the Holy Spirit fills the hearts of believers, but in this moment in time, Jesus has resurrected from the grave and has appeared to people but the church founded on Christ has yet to officially form. The header of Mark 16 says “Jesus Has Risen.”The Gospel is tied into the Resurrection. Without the Resurrection there is no Gospel to share. The church after the Resurrection is given a mission to share the Gospel to the entire world.
Gospel is the Greek word (evangelion). This is where we get our word evangelism from. The Gospel is the glad tidings of salvation through Christ.
The basic meaning of the term “gospel” was simply an announcement of a good message. If a doctor came to examine a sick person and afterward declared that the problem was nothing serious, that was gospel or good news. In ancient days when soldiers went out to battle, people waited for a report from the battlefield about the outcome. Once the outcome was known, marathon runners dashed back to give the report. That is why Isaiah wrote, “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news” (Isaiah 52:7). The watchman in the watchtower would look as far as the eye could see into the distance. Finally, he would see the dust moving as the runner sped back to the city to give the report of the battle. The watchmen were trained to tell by the way the runner’s legs were churning whether the news was good or bad. If the runner were flying and the dust was kicking up, that meant good news.
The Gospel quite literally was tied to someone who was running to share the good news.The Gospel caused the messenger to urgently move to share it with others.This is what should be the case for the church. An urgency to share the gladest tidings of all time. If I tasted a great meal at a restaurant how quick I am to share that on social media? The greatest thing to ever happen to us, salvation in Christ. This good news should well up in our hearts and naturally cause us to move to share it.
In the text He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.” Go is an action step. It is a verb. But unless another verb takes root in our hearts, we will never do it, and that verb is love. If you don’t receive God’s love you can’t possibly extend God’s love.
The verses after this says: “And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; 18 they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.” What this tell me is that when we go out as Christ’s ambassadors, we go out in power and authority. God will back up the message of the Gospel and as He does this, miracles will unfold. People will receive physical salvation that will lead to spiritual salvation (Mark 16:17-18). This only happens when the Gospel is preached. When the Gospel is preached God always backs it up with power because the Gospel declares you are healed in Jesus’ name. Salvation is both physical salvation and also spiritual salvation and is available through Jesus. Isn’t that good news?