Project 2: What is the gospel?
The word "gospel" in the bible simply means “good news.” The gospel especially refers to good news that you would announce or publish.
For some mysterious reason, English Bible translators over the years decided to use the word “gospel” in our English Bibles, instead of actually translating the Greek word into a commonly understood English word that is already in use (as good translation is intended to do).
Since the word “gospel” has no common usage in English outside of the Bible, the Bible translators unintentionally created a Christian term that has picked up some specific meaning and connotations that were not necessarily present in the simple word as it was originally written in the Bible.
What is the gospel?
When you think of “the gospel,” what comes to mind? Has someone defined it for you? What was “the gospel” that you grew up with?
It is highly likely that whatever you thought of is true, but incomplete. People with good intentions have been reducing and reducing “the gospel” over the years until the most teaching of the gospel falls far short of the original meaning.
If the main point of the gospel is in the future, like admission to heaven when you die, it is certainly incomplete.
The start of Jesus’ ministry was described like this…
Jesus came into Galilee, proclaiming the gospel of God, and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and fthe kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.”
This passage makes it clear that Jesus started proclaiming the gospel at beginning of his ministry and throughout it. Remember this was years before He went to the cross.
So what was the gospel that Jesus proclaimed throughout His ministry? What are the benefits of the gospel He proclaimed? Were these benefits realized immediately or were they only in the future?
Many Christians are not experiencing full joy in Jesus because they have not understood the full good news that He is sharing.
The gospel of Jesus is not something we believe once and then we are done. The gospel of Jesus is not even primarily about forgiveness of sin or about gaining admission to heaven.
The good news of Jesus is certainly more beautiful than this. And it is much bigger too.
The gospel is something that we can live each day. Instead of just believing in the gospel, Jesus is inviting us to live the gospel in our daily life.
To experience this, we need to internalize who Jesus is and what He offers to us today. Reflecting on the “I am” statements of Jesus is a great place to start.
Reread your notes on unpacking the “I am” statements of Jesus.
Then reflect on the following questions and write a blog post about the gospel and enjoying Jesus.
What kind of life is Jesus inviting people into? How is this good news?
How can these “I am” statements help you Enjoy Jesus more today?
How is the Gospel that Jesus shared different or the same from “the gospel” you grew up with?
How is this Gospel that Jesus shared different or the same as the gospel you believed a week ago before starting this course?
How does the incomplete gospel hinder people from enjoying Jesus?
You can answer each of these questions in your blog post if you like, but you certainly don't have to. You can just reflect on these and then write about whatever seems most important to you.
Remember their are no right answers in the Enjoying Jesus course. This is not homework. There are no tests. You get to create your own story here.
Post this action section to your blog by
Thursday, January 11, at 7 PM
Feedback is due by
Friday, January 12, at 11:59 PM
Your Reflection Summary is due by
Sunday, January 13, at 4 PM