The word Gospel was first used by Justin Martyr (c. 155 A.D.) in “Apology”. The term was commonly used to refer to the first four (4) books of the New Testament, selected as Canon by the early Church.
Gospel – from the English word god-spell meaning “good news” or good tidings
from the Greek word euvangelion or “good news”
from the Latin word evangelium
from the Aramaic word ewang’ eliyawn
The Apostle Paul shares what he believes is the meaning of the “gospel” and in his own words, it is the death, burial, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. (1Corinthians 15:3-4). In other words, the gospel is simply the good news of salvation.
He adds further that the gospel saves a person if that person believes it or hold on to it. (1Corinthians 15:2). The gospel is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes. That is the power of the gospel of Jesus Christ! Conversely, it means nothing to those who refuse to believe.
Each one of us, at a certain point in our lives, will encounter God. This encounter will be unique for every individual but you can be sure that it will happen and is bound to happen because “the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men” (Titus 2:11). In other words it did not appear to just a few individuals, or, to a select group, but to all. So nobody has a monopoly of salvation. Each one can choose to either accept it or reject it.
The gospel can save because in it, “a righteousness from God is revealed” (Romans 1:17). The prophet Isaiah said that the righteous works of man are like filthy rags in God’s sight (Isaiah 64:6). Meaning it can never make you right with God. On the other side for those who believe the gospel – the good news of salvation of Jesus Christ – that faith is counted as righteousness; the righteousness of Christ is “imputed” to that individual. Imputed means that when God looks upon the believer, when the believer comes face to face with God, the great God Almighty only sees the righteousness of Christ in that person.
That is the power in the gospel.
Benjie Bensing – Evangelical Christian Church of Libya