What are the significant elements of the gospel? Looking at Peter’s sermon at Pentecost, the first element of the gospel we see is Jesus. Acts 2:22 reads, “People of Israel, listen! God publicly endorsed Jesus the Nazarene by doing powerful miracles, wonders, and signs through him, as you well know” (NLT).
The gospel is about a person and his name is Jesus.
Sometimes we tend to overlook the fact that Jesus is perhaps the most misunderstood person in religion. American culture has reduced “God” to a mere common reference to any deity that the mind can conceive. One cannot speak of God without making a clarification and providing a definition. Jesus is still revered in America, chiefly because of his words of justice and compassion and his deeds to reach out to the oppressed. While this is not insignificant, Peter’s concern is to present Jesus as more than a peasant teacher who wandered Palestinian soil for three years. His concern is to present Jesus as God.
Through his miracles, signs, and wonders, God publicly pointed out Jesus to the crowds as the chosen one for who they have waited. The New Testament at large presents Jesus as the divine Son of God, born of a virgin, who took on flesh to identify with his own creation. During his time here Jesus lived a sinless and perfect life. The accusations against him were categorically false. He taught with brilliance and recklessly loved cared for those who were battered and broken by life and its structures and systems. But to present Jesus as a revolutionary who called for social reform falls short of who He was and is today. He is God. And that’s where the gospel must always begin.