Knowing the Gospel

“An emaciated gospel leads to emaciated worship. It lowers our eyes from God to self and cheapens what God has accomplished for us in Christ. The biblical gospel, by contrast, is like fuel in the furnace of worship. The more you understand about it, believe it, and rely on it, the more you adore God both for who he is and for what he has done for us in Christ.”[1] I want Trinity Presbyterian Church to know, love, and be defined by the biblical gospel. To that end, here’s a “cheat sheet” for sharing the gospel. I do not mean to say that you should sit down with your unbelieving friend, family member, etc., and simply go through this article point by point. This is a way for you to study some relevant biblical passages and know them before that conversation happens.

I mention all the time, whether in my prayers or my sermons, that the Bible assumes that non-Christians will take notice of how different followers of Christ are and want to know why that is. That’s the whole assumption behind 1 Pet. 3:15, “but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect.” The assumption is that someone will be asking the Christians to whom Peter writes, “What is this hope that you have within you?” When that question comes, Peter wants them to be ready. I want the members of Trinity to be ready. So, I encourage you to study this outline, choose some verses from each section to memorize, and always be ready to bear witness to the truth of the gospel. I’ve also included some quotes throughout from Greg Gilberts excellent book, What is the Gospel? There’s also a link to purchase the book here, if you’d like to dig deeper.




Gen. 1:1

Gen. 1:26-27

Ex. 4:10-11

Job 38:1-7

Ps. 19:1-3

Acts 17:23-25

Rom 1:19-20

Rev. 4:11

Holy and Righteous One

Gen. 18:23-25

Ex. 34:6-7

Ps. 11:7

Ps. 33:5

Ps. 89:14

Is. 6:3

Hab. 1:13


“It’s always interesting to watch what happens when people who insist that God would never judge them come face to face with undeniable evil. Confronted with some truly horrific evil, then they want a God of justice – and they want him now. They want God to overlook their own sin, but not the terrorist’s. ‘Forgive me,’ they say, ‘but don’t you dare forgive him!’ You see, nobody wants a God who declines to deal with evil. They just want a God who declines to deal with their evil.”[2]



Created in knowledge, righteousness, and holiness

Gen. 1:26-27

Gen. 2:18-25

Gen. 9:6

Ps. 8:4-6

Eccl. 7:29

Fallen into an estate of sin and misery

Gen. 3:8-13

Gen. 6:5-7


“One thing I’ve noticed over the years is that most people tend to think of sin, especially their own, as not much more than a parking infraction…But according to the Bible, sin is a lot more than just the violation of some impersonal, arbitrary, heavenly traffic regulation. It’s the breaking of a relationship, and even more, it is a rejection of God himself – a repudiation of God’s rule, God’s care, God’s authority, and God’s right to command those to whom he gave life. In short, it is the rebellion of the creature against his creator.”[3]


Rom. 1:18-23

Rom 2:6-8

Rom. 3:9-20

Rev. 6:12-17

Rev. 20:11-15


“This is the Bible’s sobering verdict on us. There is not one of us righteous, not even one. And because of that, one day every mouth will be silenced, every wagging tongue stopped, and the whole world will be held accountable to God.”[4]



Fully God

John 1:1-5,18.

John 8:58

John 10:30

John 14:8-11

Luke 1:34-35, 41-43

Matt. 12:6-8

Mark 14:61-62 (cf. Dan. 7:13-14)

Phil. 1:5-11

Col. 1:15-20

Col. 2:9

Titus 2:13

2 Pet. 1:1

Rev. 5:13


Fully Man

John 1:14

Heb. 4:15

1 John 1:1-4

1 John 4:2

2 John 7

1 Tim. 2:5


Perfect Sacrifice

Eph. 1:7-10

Col. 1:21-22

Col. 2:13-15

1 Pet. 3:18

Rom. 3:21-26

Rom. 5:6-10


Risen King

Luke 24:1-7

Acts 17:31

1 Cor. 15:1-11 (but also the whole chapter)

Rev. 1:17-18

Rom. 8:33-34



Is. 1:18

Is. 55:6-7

Mark 1:15

Acts 2:37-39

Acts 26:18

1 Cor. 6:9-11


Trust in Christ


“Faith is not believing in something you can’t prove, as so many people define it. It is, biblically speaking, reliance. A rock-solid, truth-grounded, promise-founded trust in the risen Jesus to save you from sin.”[5]


Acts 16:30-31

Rom. 4:18-21

Rom. 5:1-5

Eph. 2:8-9


“If God is ever to count us righteous, he will have to do it on the basis of something other than our own sinful record. He’ll have to do it on the basis of someone else’s record, someone who is standing as a substitute for us. That’s where faith in Jesus comes in. When we put our faith in Jesus, we are relying on him to stand as our substitute before God, in both his perfect life and his penalty paying death for us on the cross. In other words, we are trusting that God will substitute Jesus’ record for ours, and therefore declare us to be righteous.”[6]


Rom. 8:31-39



EDITORIAL NOTE: It has come to my attention that this article did not address the all-important issue of the doctrine of the Trinity. Though parts of the article definitely implied a belief in the doctrine, it wasn’t stated explicitly. I have, however, begun a new series of articles on the doctrine of the Trinity, the first of which may be found here.


[1] Greg Gilbert, What is the Gospel? (Wheaton: Crossway), 20-21.

[2] Gilbert, What is the Gospel?, 44.

[3] Gilbert, What is the Gospel?, 47-48.

[4] Gilbert, What is the Gospel?, 58.

[5] Gilbert, What is the Gospel?, 74.

[6] Gilbert, What is the Gospel?, 76.