Passage: Romans 1:8-17 — Thanksgiving and Prayers
Key thought: Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
I grew up in Massachusetts and have been a fan of the New England Patriots all my life. Before Belichik and Brady, they were not a very good team, but they were always my team. That said, when they were down twenty-five points to the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl LI, I turned off the TV and went to bed. No team comes back from twenty-five points in the Super Bowl. It just wasn’t possible. Well, when my wife came to bed at around one o’clock, she woke me and said that the Patriots had won in overtime. I was in disbelief — this never happens and it was too good to be true.
That is essentially what the word gospel in the New Testament denotes — it denotes something that is too good to be true yet is. In the Greek, the word gospel (eu-angelon) literally means good-message. The good message of the New Testament is that there is life after death — just as Jesus Christ was raised from the dead, so too will the believer in Jesus Christ be raised from the dead (1 Corinthians 15:20-23). This is the essence of the gospel. But in a broader sense, it often means all the good things that Jesus Christ brought to humanity, of which the resurrection from the dead is foremost.
Prayer: Lord, never let me lose site of the true meaning of the gospel — the good-message of Jesus Christ.