The Gospel of Jesus Christ is the good news of new life in Jesus Christ. One way to explain the Gospel is to consider it in three parts: 1) the already accomplished forgiveness of your sins, 2) trusting in Jesus Christ as you Savior, and 3) you new life in the family of God.
1. You Are Already Forgiven
Forgiven: Your sins are already forgiven (2 Corinthians 5:19). If you agonize over your sins, you can stop. Forgiveness is a past issue; it was forever completed on the Cross of Jesus Christ. God forgave your sins because of Christ's sacrifice, not your response to it. Jesus put away sin (Hebrews 9:26b) for all people (Mark 3:28; John 1:29; Hebrews 2:9b) for all time (Hebrews 10:12; 7:27b). Both believers and unbelievers have already been forgiven since forgiveness was God's gift of grace to all people (Colossians 1:20). However, there is one sin that can never be forgiven; it is the sin of unbelief. Unbelievers are not saved because they do not have a born again heart and they do not have Christ's eternal life living in them (1 John 5:12b). Note: The near-universal teaching that you must repent of your sins before you are forgiven is false teaching that has been past down through the centuries. You have no ability to turn from sin until after you receive a new heart and after Christ comes to live in you. Christ is your power to live a righteous life; you cannot do this with your own human strength.
Read Forgiveness Bible Verses
2. You are Saved by Trusting in Jesus Christ as the Son of God and Your Savior
Receiving a New Heart: All are forgiven but not all are saved. Only when you trust in Jesus Christ as Savior does God remove your old sinful inner nature (Romans 6:6) and replace it with a new "born again" heart (Ezekiel 36:26). This is the great promise of the New Covenant (Ezekiel 11:19). Note: "heart," "spirit" and "nature" all mean the same thing; these terms speak of your inner person.
When one speaks of being born again, it specifically means the complete change that takes place in your inner spirit. You become a brand new person on the inside (2 Corinthians 5:17). Your outer mortal body and soul remain unchanged; Godly changes to your soul will happen when you walk in faith. This is explained below.
You are made up of two parts: 1) an inner spirit and 2) an outer mortal body and soul; your soul is your mind, will, emotions and personality. Your born again spirit is the real you, the part of you that will live on into eternity. Your mortal body/soul is your temporary "house" (2 Corinthians 5:2; 4:7); this part of you will one day die and be buried. Note: Popular notions about the soul and spirit being the same thing, a soul-spirit, are not true and have not helped people understand their inner and outer persons (2 Corinthians 4:16). Your born again inner spirit is perfectly righteous while your soul is not; that is why they cannot be the same. The soul-spirit myth is intertwined with another false teaching: it says believers are only credited, or "imputed," with Christ's righteousness but are not really righteous. This is a lie; as a believer you are perfectly righteous in your born again spirit because you are joined eternally as one to Christ; since He is righteous, you are righteous (2 Peter 1:4).
Read New Heart Bible Verses
Note: To avoid confusion, "the Holy Spirit living in you" and "Christ living in you" both mean exactly the same thing (see Romans 8:9,10a).
Being Born Again: With a new heart you become, for the first time, a "clean vessel." God, in all His holiness, now has a place within you where He can live (1 Corinthians 3:16; 2 Timothy 1:14). God's Spirit comes to live in your "born again" heart. Your old, sinful inner nature is gone forever (Romans 6:6); you are brand new on the inside (2 Corinthians 5:17).
Having God's life dwelling in you is what it means to be "saved"; this is the new life (1 John 5:12; 2 Peter 1:4) that comes only through faith in Jesus Christ. You possess eternal life because Jesus, Himself, is Eternal Life (1 John 1:2; 1 John 5:11,12,13); you have His life because His Spirit now lives in you (Colossians 1:27; 2 Corinthians 13:5).
Read Born From Above Bible Verses
3. Your New Life in the Family of God
Your Union With Christ: Not only do you have eternal life, Christ's presence in you makes you literally righteous in your new spirit (Ephesians 4:24); this is because the Righteous One is joined inseparably as one to you (1 Corinthians 6:17). He is righteous; therefore, you are righteous. Righteousness has not merely been credited or imputed to you, it has been given to you as a gift (Romans 5:17), and the gift is the person of Jesus Christ living in you.
You are literally a righteous child of God; in fact, you can never, ever sin in your born again heart because Jesus in you can never sin (1 John 3:9). This is also why you are secure forever in God's family (Colossians 1:13; 1 Peter 1:23).Note: Those who scoff at the idea of eternal security are thinking from a sin model based on the error of mixing the Old Covenant law with New Covenant grace. The Law was given only to Israel because God had not yet given His Spirit. The Law was made for the flesh and was based on human works and performance. New Covenant grace is for all people because the Spirit has now been given (Romans 5:5; 1 John 4:13). The New Covenant is based on faith.
Read Union with Christ Bible Verses
The Reason You Live by Faith: Your redeemed inner spirit still "lives" inside the same mortal "house" that you had before you were saved. Your physical body and mortal mind were not changed; your outer person awaits a future redemption (Romans 8:23b). Unlike your new and perfectly righteous born again heart, your outer mortal body is still dead because of sin (Romans 8:10). You are spiritual perfection living inside mortal imperfection (2 Corinthians 4:16; 5:4). This is the reason you can still sin in your mortal flesh.
The state of your mortal flesh is the precise reason for the life of faith. You can never make your mortal flesh righteous because it does not have the capacity to be righteous. But, as the Holy Spirit teaches you in your born again heart (Ephesians 1:17,18; Colossians 1:9; 1 Corinthians 2:10,13), you are being transformed by the renewing of your mortal mind (Romans 12:2). You become more righteousness conscious and less oriented toward your former life as an unbeliever.
(If you are still having trouble grasping the inner spirit, outer mortal body concept, this might help: when a believer dies, their body goes to the grave because it has not yet been redeemed and made righteous; but, their inner spirit remains with the Lord because it has already been redeemed and made righteous. In the future, believers will receive new bodies that are perfect for their redeemed and righteous spirits.)
How to Live by Faith: When Jesus was baptized at the beginning of His earthly ministry, God's Spirit came down to dwell in Him. In this way, the Father did His works and miracles through Jesus, as Jesus followed His Father in faith (John 14:10). Jesus did not do these works by His own human strength even though He was sinless (John 5:30; 5:19; 8:28). This same Holy Spirit that lived in and empowered Jesus now lives in you!
Therefore, the only way you can live a life pleasing to God is to live by the power of Christ within you; this is the life of faith. Christ lives in your born again heart, joined as one with you. The Spirit of God is faithful and He will accomplish His good works through you (Galatians 2:20). You become the hands, feet, and voice of Christ in the world today.
At the times you do stumble, simply turn back to Christ in faith. Dwelling on sins or confessing them is doubting the forever forgiveness that Christ secured on the Cross. God wants you to focus on righteous living because Christ is your power to live this new life.
Read Living By Faith Bible Verses
Top of Page