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Yeshua in Context » Background to Gospels, Beginners, Besorah/Gospel/Good News » The Beginning of the Gospel

The Beginning of the Gospel

Gospel is a word with many layers. It is a later English coined word (God-spell) used for the Greek evangelion and the Hebrew besorah. The simple translation would be good news. The basic picture is of a messenger who comes to a town with good news: “We are safe; the enemy is defeated.”

The word gospel has a long history of use in the Bible, both in the Hebrew Bible and in the New Testament. It is interesting to see how Mark uses the word in the first verse of his narrative: “The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ [Messiah Yeshua].”

What is this the beginning of? It is the beginning of an account, Mark’s account, telling the story and message of Yeshua from beginning to end. The life of Yeshua is the gospel, in Mark’s usage.

It’s an interesting corrective to so many who have understood the word gospel in different terms, as a message of benefits for Jesus’ followers. Gospel has become a word used in religious circles for a sort of sales pitch to persuade people to believe. But the common sales pitch is usually put in simple terms of a bargain with God: believe and get heaven as a reward. This is such a poor gospel compared to Mark’s.

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Filed under: Background to Gospels, Beginners, Besorah/Gospel/Good News

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