Basics Series. Evangelism, part 5: What the Gospel is NOT

Joh 3:14-18; Act 16:31; Rom 4:23-25; Eph 2:1-9; Act 26:12-20.

BAS-5-111011 - length: 62:35 - taught on Oct, 11 2011

Class Outline:

John Farley


October 11, 2011

Evangelism, Part 5:
What the Gospel is NOT.

The Doctrine of the Gospel

Point 1: What is “the Gospel”?

The Gospel is the “good news” of salvation through Christ, to be received by faith alone, on the basis of His substitutionary death bearing our sins, followed by His burial and resurrection.

2CO 5:21
He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

The Gospel is all about Christ:
His person and
His work.

The Gospel is the GOOD NEWS concerning the person, death, burial, and resurrection of our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.

 By simply believing this good news, we have eternal life and are declared perfectly righteous forever by God.

pisteuo =
“to believe, to be persuaded of, to place confidence in, to trust”

“to believe in to the extent of complete trust and reliance”

ROM 4:5
But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited as righteousness.

Faith or believing is having complete trust and reliance on another to come through for you solely on the basis of their authority, ability, and trustworthiness.

GAL 3:26
For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.

Faith gives all of the merit to the OBJECT of faith.
It keeps none for itself.

I believe in Christ.

Not the subject “I”
Not the verb “believe”
all for the object “Christ”

In salvation, the object of our faith is the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ. 

Pisteuo is not a special kind of faith which some claim is only given to the elect. The merit is in the object, not the way someone believes.

Faith does not include repentance in the sense of feeling sorry for your sins and/or renouncing all your sins.

It does not mean to commit to, as in committing your life to Christ, making Christ Lord of your life, counting the cost and agreeing to pay it.

Pisteuo does not encompass obedience, or forsaking oneself for the sake of Christ.

Saving faith does not include submission to the commands of God - except the one to believe!

At salvation, the issue for our volition is NOT commitment or obedience, but simply TRUST.

One of the big mistakes that proponents of the so-called Lordship salvation teaching make is confusing what the unbeliever is asked to do with what the believer is asked to do!

Believing in Jesus therefore is the issue of placing your complete trust in, and reliance on, Him and what He did for you on the cross for your salvation.

“When a person gives credence to the historical facts that Christ died and rose from the dead and the doctrinal fact that this was for his sins, he is trusting his eternal destiny to the reliability of those truths.”

The simple message of the Gospel of Christ is that the Lord Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and arose from the dead.

And if you will only trust in Him by faith, you will be declared perfectly righteous and have eternal life in God’s heaven.

Because all men are sinners, He died.
Because all who believe in Him are justified, He rose.

The entire New Testament is full of good news for believers who have been declared perfectly righteous and have eternal life and are in union with Christ.


The central truth of the Gospel is that God has provided a way of salvation for all mankind (from sin, condemnation, and the death of eternal separation from God in the Lake of Fire) through the free gift of His Son the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Gospel is the good news that the God-man, the Lord Jesus Christ, died on the cross for the sins of the world as our Substitute.

He died spiritually, meaning He was separated from His Father under judgment as He was bearing our sins on the cross, and then He died physically.

He was buried, and after three days He was raised bodily from the dead, after which He appeared to many witnesses.

The Gospel is also good news because salvation is a gift of God, not something that must be earned.

Anyone who simply believes in Christ[trusts in Him completely and exclusively for salvation] has eternal life and is justified [declared perfectly righteous forever] by God the Father.


Point 2: What the Gospel is not.

There are savage wolves that put stumbling blocks in the way of the unbeliever trusting in the good news of the Gospel and believing in Christ for salvation.

MAT 23:4
“They tie up heavy burdens and lay them on men's shoulders, but they themselves are unwilling to move them with so much as a finger.”


stumbling blocks like:
Feeling sorry for your sins
Repenting of all your sins
Making a commitment
Giving your life to Christ
Changing your life


Stumbling blocks like:

  • Feeling sorry for your sins
  • Repenting of all your sins
  • Making a commitment
  • Giving your life to Christ


Stumbling blocks like:

  • Changing your life
  • Making Jesus Lord of your life
  • Inviting Jesus into your heart

Stumbling blocks like:

  • Water baptism
  • Making a public confession
  • Joining a church


These are adding to faith alone in Christ alone.

If it is about something the unbeliever has to DO, it is NOT the Gospel.

The Gospel is the Good News about what the Lord Jesus Christ has ALREADY DONE.