Okay, so among other resources, I’m reading Karl Barth’s commentary, The Epistle to the Romans. Romans 1:1 says, “Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God,” (ESV). Here are Barth’s comments on the importance of the phrase “gospel of God”.
“The Gospel is not a religious message to inform mankind of their divinity or to tell them how they may become divine. The Gospel proclaims a God utterly distinct from men. Salvation comes to them from Him, because they are, as men, incapable of knowing Him, and because they have no right to claim anything from Him. The Gospel is not one thing in the midst of other things, to be directly apprehended and comprehended. The Gospel is the Word of the Primal Origin of all things, the Word which, since it is ever new, must ever be received with renewed fear and trembling. The Gospel is therefore not an event, nor an experience, nor an emotion — however delicate! Rather, it is the clear and objective perception of what eye hath not seen nor ear heard. Moreover, what it demands of men is more than notice, or understanding, or sympathy. It demands participation, comprehension, co-operation; for it is a communication which presumes faith in the living God, and which creates that which it presumes.”
That is amazing. I had to share it.