Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun The proclamation of the redemption preached by Jesus and the Apostles, which is the central content of Christian revelation.
  • noun Bible One of the first four New Testament books, describing the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus and recording his teaching.
  • noun A similar narrative.
  • noun A lection from any of the first four New Testament books included as part of a religious service.
  • noun A teaching or doctrine of a religious teacher.
  • noun Music Gospel music.
  • noun Something, such as an idea or principle, accepted as unquestionably true.
  • adjective Of or in accordance with the Gospel; evangelical.
  • adjective Of or relating to gospel music.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • To instruct in the gospel; fill with sentiments of piety.
  • noun (Glad tidings, especially the glad tidings that the Messiah expected by the Jews has appeared in the person of Christ.
  • noun The story of Christ's life, teachings, sufferings, death, resurrection, and ascension; hence, one of the books in which that story was originally told: as, the Gospel of Matthew.
  • noun The doctrine and precepts inculcated by Christ and recorded in the original accounts of his life and teachings.
  • noun Hence Any doctrine, religious or secular, maintained as of great or exclusive importance.
  • noun A portion of Scripture taken from one of the four gospels, and appointed to be read in liturgical churches as a part of the church service.
  • noun That which is infallibly true; absolute truth.
  • Pertaining or relating to the gospel; accordant with the gospel; evangelical.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Accordant with, or relating to, the gospel; evangelical.
  • transitive verb obsolete To instruct in the gospel.
  • noun Glad tidings; especially, the good news concerning Christ, the Kingdom of God, and salvation.
  • noun One of the four narratives of the life and death of Jesus Christ, written by Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.
  • noun A selection from one of the gospels, for use in a religious service.
  • noun Any system of religious doctrine; sometimes, any system of political doctrine or social philosophy.
  • noun colloq. Anything propounded or accepted as infallibly true.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun The first section of the Christian New Testament scripture, comprising the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, concerned with the life, death, resurrection, and teachings of Jesus.
  • noun An account of the life, death, resurrection, and teachings of Jesus, generally written during the first several centuries of the Common Era.
  • noun A message expected to have positive reception or effect.
  • noun Protestantism the teaching of Divine grace as distinguished from the Law or Divine commandments
  • noun uncountable gospel music
  • noun uncountable That which is absolutely authoritative (definitive).
  • verb obsolete, transitive To instruct in the gospel.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun folk music consisting of a genre of a cappella music originating with Black slaves in the United States and featuring call and response; influential on the development of other genres of popular music (especially soul)
  • noun an unquestionable truth
  • noun a doctrine that is believed to be of great importance
  • noun the written body of teachings of a religious group that are generally accepted by that group
  • noun the four books in the New Testament (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) that tell the story of Christ's life and teachings

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English, from Old English gōdspel (ultimately translation of Greek euangelion) : gōd, good; see good + spel, news.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle English gospel, gospell, godspel, godspell, goddspell, from Old English godspel ("gospel, glad tidings; one of the four gospels"), corresponding to god +‎ spell (“talk, tale, story”), believed to be an alteration of earlier *gōdspell (literally "good news"), used to translate ecclesiastical Latin bona annuntiatio, itself a translation of Ecclesiastical Latin evangelium / Ancient Greek εὐαγγέλιον (euangelion, "evangel", literally "good news"). Compare Old Saxon godspel, godspell ("gospel"), Old High German gotspel ("gospel"), Icelandic guðspjall ("gospel").

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