The gospel is about two realities; one that is heavenly, and the other that is earthy. The "heavenly" reality has to do with how we are made right with God: God created us to be in a perfect relationship with Him and each other. Through sin (rebellion against God's rule), those perfect relationships have been irreparably damaged. While we may not use the term "sin" frequently anymore, we see the effects of sin everywhere in our world.
Because God is holy, our sin against Him is infinitely horrible. While He has sought nothing but our good, we have rebelled against Him, believing we can run life better than He can. Mankind, as His creation bears an obligation to obey God, but our sinfulness means we cannot. Because of this inability and our resulting rebellion, we also owe a debt we cannot repay. Yet through Jesus Christ, His sinless Son, our obligation has been fulfilled and our debt is paid through Christ's sacrificial death on behalf of those who trust in Him.
Forgiveness comes through acknowledging our sins before God and believing that Jesus is who He claims to be. This brings us to the earthy dimension of the gospel: "Trusting" in Christ means submitting our lives to His gracious rule. The benefit of the forgiveness of our sins comes through admitting that His way of living is far superior to ours! This means that we no longer demand our way of living and instead seek to live His way in this world--until He takes us to the next!
We have expounded on this definition of the gospel in the following four-part sermon series. Please click below to listen!