Paul spoke of a mystery hidden since the beginning: “the revelation of the mystery [mysterion 3466], which was kept secret since the world began” (Rom 16:25); “a mystery [mysterion 3466], even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world” (1Co 2:7); “the mystery [mysterion 3466], which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God” (Eph 3:9); “the mystery [mysterion 3466] which hath been hid from ages” (Col 1:26). The true gospel message was hidden by God in the creation account, “the mystery [mysterion 3466] of the gospel” (Eph 6:19).
“And God said, Let there be light: and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night … And God made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night” (Gen 1:3-5,16). Before creating the first man, God showed there would be two classes of people— the “Day” and the “Night.” The “Day” would be ruled by the Greater Light—God’s people under the Lordship of Jesus Christ, and all others the “Night” ruled by the lesser light—the devil and evil spirits. This is the true gospel message in a mystery.
The two great lights in heaven, “Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven … lights in the firmament of the heaven” (Gen 1:14,15), Paul wrote about in Ephesians, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly [epouranios 2032] places in Christ … Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly [epouranios 2032] places” (Eph 1:3,20). The “greater light” in the heavens foretold of Christ now seated at God’s right hand as Lord of God’s people, while the “lesser light” is the devil ruling over everyone else, “Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high [epouranios 2032] places” (Eph 6:11-12).
As when darkness was upon the face of the deep and God spoke “Let there be light,” Jesus Christ spoke the “light” of the gospel message into the “dark” hearts of this world, “And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not” (Jhn 1:5), “the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them … For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts” (2Co 4:4,6). Our hearts were “dark” but the “light” of Christ’s gospel makes us the “Day” ruled by Him as our Lord.
The gospel Jesus Christ preached is obedience to Him as Lord: “That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven” (Mat 5:20); “Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them … And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not” (Mat 7:24,26); “Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you” (Mat 28:20); “And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?” (Luk 6:46).
He preached that we must be faithful servants to Him as our Lord: “No man can serve two masters” (Mat 6:24); “The disciple is not above his master, nor the servant above his lord” (Mat 10:24); “Who then is a faithful and wise servant” (Mat 24:45); “Well done, thou good and faithful servant” (Mat 25:21); “Who then is that faithful and wise steward” (Luk 12:42); “And if ye have not been faithful in that which is another man’s, who shall give you that which is your own? No servant can serve two masters” (Luk 16:12-13); “We are unprofitable servants: we have done that which was our duty to do” (Luk 17:10); “Well, thou good servant: because thou hast been faithful in a very little, have thou authority over ten cities” (Luk 19:17).
The true gospel message from the very beginning and from Jesus Christ Himself is faithfulness to Him as Lord. The message of sola fide or “faith alone” from Martin Luther about 500 years ago is NOT. Nowhere does Scripture record Christians calling themselves “believers,” only some mistranslations giving that impression. They always called themselves “servants”: “Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ” (Rom 1:1); “Paul and Timotheus, the servants of Jesus Christ” (Phl 1:1); “Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ” (Col 4:12); “James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ” (Jas 1:1); “Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ” (2Pe 1:1); “Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ” (Jde 1:1).who is one of you, a servant of Christ” (Col 4:12); “Paul and Timotheus, the servants of Jesus Christ” (Phl 1:1); “Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ” (Tit 1:1); “James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ” (Jas 1:1); “Simon Peter, a servant and an apostle of Jesus Christ” (2Pe 1:1); “Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ” (Jde 1:1). The true gospel message is living righteously in obedience to the Lord Jesus Christ.