There are millions of pages of truth, facts, opinions, epics, myths, fairy tales and short stories available to us. But there is a truth that can be summed up in a sentence or two and it has more value than everything thing.
Theology Springs from the Gospel
There are also stacks of wonderful theology books available. Some incredible and some terrible. But what is fundamental to our faith is how the Gospel is the fountain from which all essential theologies erupt from.
Below is a brief definition of the Gospel. And then I want us to see how other essential theologies spring from the Gospel we hold so dear.
We need to work from a definition of the Gospel:
According to the Word of God,
God the Father sent His Son,
Jesus Christ, our great God and Savior, who
died in the place of sinful men and women, to pay for their sins.
He rose again from the grave granting
a new and eternal life, filled and led by the Holy Spirit,
for all who believe in Him, declaring them: not guilty.
Gospel Theology Unpacked
Here are some major theological truths that are essential to our faith. Along with that doctrinal truth you'll see where it come from the Gospel definition, a brief explanation and some verses to support.
SCRIPTURE ALONE: “According to the Word of God…”
We believe that the Bible is the inspired and inerrant (true) Word of God, from which we derive all of our direction and doctrine for all of life. (2 Timothy 3:16-17; John 17:3; Proverbs 19:7-11)?
THE TRINITY: “…God the Father sent His Son…filled and led by the Holy Spirit…”
We believe that there is only ONE God who has always existed in three distinct persons: Father, Son & Holy Spirit. (Deut. 6:4 & Matthew 3:16-17)
PERSON AND WORK OF JESUS CHRIST: “…Jesus Christ, our great God & Savior, who…”
We believe in the Humanity & Deity of Jesus: He is and always has been fully God and in the incarnation He became fully man (minus sin). He is our Savior. (Titus 2:13; John 20:28; John 1:1, 14; Colossians 2:9; John 8:58; Hebrews 1:3,8)
SUBSTITUTIONARY ATONEMENT: “…died in the place of sinful men & women, to pay for their sins.”
We believe that Jesus suffered, was punished and died in our place, for our sins, as our substitute. He took the wrath of God for us. Our sins were transferred to Him and He gave us His righteousness. (Galatians 3:10, 13-14; 2 Corinthians 5:21; 1 Peter 2:24; Isaiah 53)
RESURRECTION: “He rose again from the grave…”
We believe that three days after Jesus’ death He rose again. It wasn't solely a spiritual resurrection, but His actual body. This confirms & continues Jesus’ ministry as our Savior, Mediator and Advocate. Resurrection is also the pattern, power and promise of our new life: dead to sin and alive to God just like Jesus, who died and rose again; and our eternal life to come. (Romans 6:4-14; 1 Corinthians 15:12-22)
NEW BIRTH (REGENERATION) / ETERNAL LIFE: “…and a new & eternal life…”
We believe that the Holy Spirit makes us new creations. We are born again to a new life united to Jesus Christ as our brother, God as our Father, and the Holy Spirit as our helper. We are secured in the promise of eternal life with God. (John 3:3-8,16; 2 Corinthians 5:17; John 17:3, 10:27-30; 1 Peter 3:18)?
JUSTIFICATION: “…declaring…not guilty.”
We believe that through the person and work of Jesus, when someone repents and has faith in Jesus, the Father declares them “not guilty” and they are counted as righteous. Man is ‘made right with God’ through the imputed righteousness of Christ. (Romans 3:24, 4:25, 5:9; Galatians 2:16; 2 Corinthians 5:21)
THE MINISTRY OF THE HOLY SPIRIT: “…filled and led by the Holy Spirit…”
We believe that Holy Spirit of God is our helper and guide in the Christian's new life in/with Christ. He helps us understand and apply the Bible. He helps us pray. He empowers us to serve the church and the world. He is the agent by which we mature, kill sin, grow in godliness & glorify God. His aim is to make much of Jesus and He helps us do that. (John 16:13-14; 1 Corinthians 2:9-13; Romans 8:11-17)
FAITH ALONE through CHRIST ALONE: “…to all who believe.”?
We believe that sinners are saved by faith alone in Christ alone. No one is saved by their works but only the life, death, resurrection and righteousness of Jesus Christ. This wonderful salvation is a gift given to us by grace through faith. Jesus is the only way to salvation. (Ephesians 2:1-10; John 14:6; Acts 4:11-12; Romans 10:9-13)