We have good news!
The word gospel literally means good news. It's the good news of the Bible that Christ died for our sins and was raised on the third day. We believe the gospel is the main message of the Bible. Not only does the storyline of the Bible point to and culminate in the person and work of Jesus Christ, but the apostle Paul explicitly says the death and resurrection of Jesus are of first importance (1 Corinthians 15:3-4). Therefore, it is our main message too. The gospel can be understood using these four categories:
God created all things and owns all things. Therefore we are accountable to God. He's not a distant, overbearing ruler though. He loves his creation. But he is also holy and righteous, unable to leave sin unpunished. To many people, these two things don't seem to go together very well. But the gospel shows us how these two things can both be true. God is both perfectly loving and perfectly just.
We are created in the image of God to live in relationship with God for his glory. This relationship would be rich with God's blessing. But down to the very last one of us, we have all rebelled against God and are guilty of sin. As people created by and for God we have decided to go our own way; our sin deserves God’s just punishment, eternal death. This isn't sounding like very good news, is it?
BUT the good news is this - Christ died for our sins and was raised from the dead! He lived a perfect life and died the death we deserve. His death satisfies the need for our sin to be justly punished. But he doesn't just take our punishment, he also gives us his righteousness. That's a great exchange. If we believe this gospel, God looks on us and sees his Son. That's part of what it means to be "in Christ." Jesus' life, death, and resurrection are our only grounds for salvation! Through his work, our relationship with God can be completely restored.
More good news - we don't do anything to earn our salvation. All we have to do is believe the gospel and repent. We have to believe we actually need a savior (ie. we're guilty) and trust Christ alone to save us from our sin. We then turn from our rebellious ways and submit to God as our Creator and rightful Lord.
If you have questions about this good news or what it means for you, contact Pastor Lucas.