What is the Gospel? (1 Corinthians 15)Gospel of Yeshua Messiah series . Torah/Bible
This morning my oldest daughter asked her sisters, “If someone asked you what is the Gospel, what would you answer?” One of her sisters answered, “1 Corinthians 15.” She then went on to say what 1 Corinthians 15 says in her own words. I will not be able to do what she did, but I absolutely loved her answer, and decided to share this passage in my blog.
Before I begin, I want to remember that this letter is written by Paul to the church in Corinth, but it really seems so applicable to us today.
1 Corinthians 15
Remember all of you the Good News we preached to you. You welcomed it then, and you still stand firm in it. This is the Good News that saves you if you continue to believe it, unless you believed something that was never true in the first place. It is the most important thing, that is why I told you it. Yeshua Messiah died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said. He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, just as the Scriptures said. He was seen by Peter and then by the Twelve. After that, he was seen by more than 500 of his followers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. Then he was seen by James and later by all the apostles. Last of all, as though I had been born at the wrong time, I also saw him. For I am the least of all the apostles. In fact, I’m not even worthy to be called an apostle after the way I persecuted God’s church. But whatever I am now, it is all because God poured out his special favor on me-and not without results. For I have worked harder than any of the other apostles; yet it was not I but God who was working through me by his grace. So it makes no difference whether I preach or they preach, for we all preach the same Gospel you have already believed.
But tell me this-since we preach that Messiah rose from the dead, why are some of you saying there will be no resurrection of the dead? For if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Messiah has not been raised either. And if Messiah has not been raised, then all our preaching is useless, and your faith is useless. And we apostles would all be lying about God-for we have said that God raised Messiah from the grave. But that can’t be true if there is no resurrection of the dead. And if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Messiah has not been raised. And if Messiah has not been raised, then your faith is useless and you are still guilty of your sins. In that case, all who have died believing in Messiah are lost! And if our hope in Messiah is only for this life, we are more to be pitied than anyone in the world.
But in fact, Yeshua our Messiah has been raised from the dead. He is the first of a great harvest of all who have died. So you see, just as death came into the world through a man, now the resurrection from the dead has begun through another man. Just as everyone dies because we all belong to Adam, everyone who belongs to Messiah will be given new life. But there is an order to this resurrection: Messiah was raised as the first of the harvest; then all who belong to Messiah will be raised when he comes back. After that the end will come, when he will turn the Kingdom over to God the Father, having destroyed every ruler and authority and power. For Messiah must reign until he humbles all his enemies beneath his feet. And the last enemy to be destroyed is death. For the Scriptures say, “God has put all things under his authority.” Then, when all things are under his authority, the Son will put himself under God’s authority, so that God, who gave his Son authority over all things, will be utterly supreme over everything everywhere. If the dead will not be raised, what point is there in people being baptized for those who are dead? Why do it unless the dead will someday rise again? And why should we ourselves risk our lives hour by hour? For I swear, dear brothers and sisters, that I face death daily. This is as certain as my pride in what Messiah Yeshua our Lord has done in you. And what value was there in fighting wild beasts-those people of Ephesus -if there will be no resurrection from the dead? And if there is no resurrection, “Let’s feast and drink, for tomorrow we die!” Don’t be fooled by those who say such things, for “bad company corrupts good character.” Think carefully about what is right, and stop sinning. For to your shame I say that some of you don’t know God at all.
But someone may ask, “How will the dead be raised? What kind of bodies will they have?” What a foolish question! When you put a seed into the ground, it doesn’t grow into a plant unless it dies first. And what you put in the ground is not the plant that will grow, but only a bare seed of wheat or whatever you are planting. Then God gives it the new body he wants it to have. A different plant grows from each kind of seed. Similarly there are different kinds of flesh-one kind for humans, another for animals, another for birds, and another for fish. There are also bodies in the heavens and bodies on the earth. The glory of the heavenly bodies is different from the glory of the earthly bodies. The sun has one kind of glory, while the moon and stars each have another kind. And even the stars differ from each other in their glory. It is the same way with the resurrection of the dead. Our earthly bodies are planted in the ground when we die, but they will be raised to live forever. Our bodies are buried in brokenness, but they will be raised in glory. They are buried in weakness, but they will be raised in strength. They are buried as natural human bodies, but they will be raised as spiritual bodies. For just as there are natural bodies, there are also spiritual bodies. The Scriptures tell us, “The first man, Adam, became a living person.” But the last Adam-that is, Messiah-is a life-giving Spirit. What comes first is the natural body, then the spiritual body comes later. Adam, the first man, was made from the dust of the earth, while Messiah, the second man, came from heaven. Earthly people are like the earthly man, and heavenly people are like the heavenly man. Just as we are now like the earthly man, we will someday be like the heavenly man. What I am saying, dear brothers and sisters, is that our physical bodies cannot inherit the Kingdom of God. These dying bodies cannot inherit what will last forever.
But let me reveal to you a wonderful secret. We will not all die, but we will all be transformed! It will happen in a moment, in the blink of an eye, when the last trumpet is blown. For when the trumpet sounds, those who have died will be raised to live forever. And we who are living will also be transformed. For our dying bodies must be transformed into bodies that will never die; our mortal bodies must be transformed into immortal bodies. Then, when our dying bodies have been transformed into bodies that will never die, this Scripture will be fulfilled: “Death is swallowed up in victory. “O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting? ” For sin is the sting that results in death, and the law gives sin its power. But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Yeshua Messiah.
So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.
Wow, I can’t believe how truly complete this passage is. I love passages like this that are summary passages. This is indeed the summary of the Gospel, Good News. I think we can often get so caught up in living the life of a believer that we forget what it is we are standing firm on. I love the last verse about working enthusiastically for the Lord. We are called to good works, obedience to God’s Word, His calling, His plan. We find that calling, purpose, and plan in His Word, and we fall in love with it and walk in it, but we can never forget why we do what we do, and live how we live.
The Gospel, the mystery of the Gospel, is that Yeshua, the Son of God, came to earth, lived a perfect, sinless life, was tried and convicted for my sins, died, and rose again, conquering death, and saving me from eternal separation from God. Me, a gentile, I am saved by the blood of Yeshua Messiah, and so is everyone else who confesses that Yeshua is indeed Lord. If you believe then you live like you believe. But we must know the reason we live a set apart life, what is holiness if we have no hope.
My children have been memorizing the passage in Ephesians of the armor of God. I have found that so often people call the footwear, shoes of peace, or shoes of the gospel of peace, but that actually verse says,
“ and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.”
This is the only place in scripture that the word for “readiness” is found. Let’s look at it.
STRONGS NT 2091: ἑτοιμασία
ἑτοιμασία, ἑτοιμασίας, ἡ (ἑτοιμάζω), cf. θαυμάσια, εἰκασία, ἐργασία);
1. the act of preparing: τῆς τροφῆς, Wis. 13:12; τῶν κλιναρίων, Artemidorus Daldianus, oneir. 2, 57.
2. equivalent to ἑτοιμότης, the condition of a person or thing so far forth as prepared, preparedness, readiness: Hipp., p. 24 (i. 74, Kühn edition); Josephus, Antiquities 10, 1, 2; readiness of mind (German Bereitwilligkeit), τῆς καρδίας, Psalm 9:38 (): ἐν ἑτοιμασία τοῦ εὐαγγελίου, with the promptitude and alacrity which the gospel produces, Ephesians 6:15.
If we want to do good work, and stand firm in our believes we must be prepared with the understanding of the Gospel of peace. The Gospel, the good news, we must be prepared with this message! Our mind must be ready, we must know that we know that we know, what we know.
We must know the answer to the question, “What is the Gospel?”
Do you know the answer, can you tell someone in a quick and simple conversation what the Gospel is?
If not, here is some passages to read and reread, and study to come to a clear, and solid understanding of the Gospel. Take the time to read them in context and to really understand what they are saying.
- Creation: Very Good Col. 1:16 & Gen. 1:31a – For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. 31 God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.
- People: Not So Good Isaiah 53:6 & Romans 3:23 – We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all. 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
- God Sent His Son John 3:16 – For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
- Jesus’ Authority Matthew 9:6-7 & John 10:30 – “But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralyzed man, “Get up, take your mat and go home.” 7 Then the man got up and went home. 30 “I and the Father are one.”
- Jesus’ Nature Philippians 2:6-8 – Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; 7 rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made inhuman likeness. 8 And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross!
- His Resurrection 1 Corinthians 15:3-5 – For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve.
- Forgiveness 1 John 1:9 – If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
- Saved for Sure Romans 10:9-10 – If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.
- Saved by Grace Ephesians 2:8-9 – For it is by grace you have been saved through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast.
- Citizens and Family Ephesians 2:19-20 – Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone.
- Life with Love John 15:10 & 13 – “If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. 13 Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”
- Life with Focus Hebrews 12:1-2a – Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith.
- Diverse Heaven Revelation 7:9a – After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb.
The point of this life is to live in the victory of our Messiah, and work enthusiastically for His Kingdom and Glory. If we don’t remember what Messiah has done for us then every thing we do becomes selfishness and legalism. We are nothing without Him, and we must never forget that.
Written by Katie
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