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What Is the Gospel? (Series: 9Marks)

Series 9Marks
Author Greg Gilbert
Narrator Lloyd James
Runtime 3.3 Hrs. - Unabridged
Publisher christianaudio
Downloads ZIP M4B MP3
Release Date June 24, 2010
Availability: Unrestricted (available worldwide)

Beginning with Paul's systematic presentation of the gospel in Romans and moving through the sermons in Acts, Gilbert argues that the central structure of the gospel consists of four main subjects: God, man, Christ, and a response. The book carefully examines each and then explores the effects the gospel can have in individuals, churches, and the world.

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This newest addition to the IXMarks series presents a clear, straightforward statement of the gospel, the third mark of a healthy church. What is the gospel? It seems like a simple question, yet it has been known to incite some heated responses, even in the church. How are we to formulate a clear, biblical understanding of the gospel?

Tradition, reason, and experience all leave us ultimately disappointed. If we want answers, we must turn to the Word of God. Greg Gilbert does so in What Is the Gospel? Beginning with Paul's systematic presentation of the gospel in Romans and moving through the sermons in Acts, Gilbert argues that the central structure of the gospel consists of four main subjects: God, man, Christ, and a response. The book carefully examines each and then explores the effects the gospel can have in individuals, churches, and the world. Both Christian and non-Christian readers will gain a clearer understanding of the gospel in this valuable resource.

Customer Reviews

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The Greatest Book On Explaining The Gospel!!
Pastor and author Greg Gilbert asks a pertinent question in his newly titled book "What Is The Gospel?". This book is part of the 9marks series which is a series of books go in depth on what the ministries proclaimed 9marks of a healthy church are. One would think that would be the simplest question to answer for the evangelical church but many times we hear wrong answer or non biblical partial truths. Gilbert begins the book by presenting multiple false positions of what the Gospel is from liberal theologians and health & wealth preachers.

To answer the question of the gospel and what is so good about this news he starts with what is going to be our authority, for the Christian it is the Bible. The author then proceeds to give four questions through which he demonstrates his outline to demonstrate the gospel. (1) Who made me, and to whom are we accountable? (God) (2) What is our problem? (man) (3) What is God's solution to that problem? (Christ) (4) How do I come to be included in that salvation? (response).

These four questions provide the frame for the rest of this book in which Gilbert devotes one chapter to answering in more detail. Within the chapters he explains the holy righteous nature of God and Jesus and man’s depravity. He also gives a thorough account of the redemptive work accomplished on the cross for Christ followers. Shows how Christ’s penal Substitutionary atonement is the only thing sufficient to satisfy a holy God. Then in concluding the chapters on answering the four questions he demonstrates what is saving faith and also what is not saving faith.

Gilbert then continues the book by writing what it exactly means now to be a part of God’s kingdom. Once again he reverts back to the text of scripture and what does it say about the kingdom of God. His brief explanation of the kingdom revolves around the idea of the kingdom now and the kingdom which is not yet. He finishes how the kingdom citizen’s should live cross-centered lives by loving one another and longing for the return of their King.

The audio book by Christianaudio was splendidly narrated by Lloyd James whose was a superb addition to the book. What is the Gospel? is a enjoyably clear, concise, well-articulated and engaging little book which I highly recommend. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from ChristianAudio as part of their book review program.
Review by / (Posted on 4/5/2011)
Good primer on the subject
There is a lot of confusion today over the gospel of Jesus Christ. If you were to ask somebody, "what is the gospel?", you would get a dozen different answers. Some say it's prosperity, others say a happy life, or maybe inner peace. Still others would be unable to articulate it. Frequently, the answer you get would not include Jesus' death on the cross and His subsequent resurrection, and you certainly wouldn't learn why He died on the cross and rose from the dead.

What Is the Gospel?, by Greg Gilbert, part of the IXMarks series of books, seeks to answer the titular question by going to the Bible and seeing what it has to say on the subject. Each chapter goes over a certain topic- God, sin, Jesus, etc.- and lays out what the Bible says on these topics, how they relate to each other, and what our response should be.

The book is simple to understand, and is a good primer on the topic. Gilbert goes through each topic carefully, and is very clear in the message. Those who already know the biblical gospel may find this book to be a nice refresher; however, they may not find much new to learn. My only real complaint is that Gilbert tries to find a formula in all of the gospel presentations found in the New Testament, and, while I don't recall him advocating a one-two-three approach to personal evangelism, the book's presentation makes it easy to do so. I personally don't believe evangelism should be formulaic- I don't believe it's necessary to pound somebody down with what a sinner they are before you can present Jesus Christ. God gave us a conscience for a reason.

I was amused by the choice of Lloyd James for reading this book, because he sounds a lot like Mark Dever, who is the president of IXMarks Ministries. This makes James' reading of the book seem rather appropriate. He reads softly and yet clearly, and his voice is easy to listen to. However, I must admit he is rather easy to ignore, and I found my mind wandering from time to time while listening to the book.

The simplicity and clarity of the book makes What Is The Gospel? a good book to read if you have questions about the gospel of Jesus Christ, or to give to someone else who has questions. It is definitely a great primer on the subject.

This audiobook review was made possible by the christianaudio Reviewers Program, and can also be read at
Review by / (Posted on 1/21/2011)
Excellent addition to the IX Marks Series
This is an excellent little book that adequately deals with the question in the title... Which, I might add, is a question that needs to be asked. The book begins by showing the various responses that the author has encountered when asking the same question. To have clarity on this subject is essential.

After enlightening us to our need to ask the question, Greg Gilbert does a great job of laying out the basic elements of the gospel message, while helping his readers do the same thing. He answers the question by looking to the scriptures and then shows the various examples of that same gospel message. Without sounding too deeply theological, he then goes through each element of the Gospel message and brings additional clarity to the subject.

Although I had already read through this book, the audio version of this book was excellently performed bringing an even better understanding of the book and highlighting aspects that had gone unnoticed the first time.

As a Pastor I saw this book as an essential for each of the members of my church because we are to be about the Gospel! I highly recommend this book.
Review by / (Posted on 11/10/2010)
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