By the end of chapter 8 in Scot McKnight’s new book The King Jesus Gospel: The Original Good News Revisited, unless you’re not paying attention, you have no doubt what is his argument: The gospel is the Story of Jesus as the completion of the Story of Israel.
Each of these four witnesses [apostolic gospel tradition, the gospel in the four Gospels, the gospel of Jesus, and the sermons in Acts] tell us the same thing about the gospel. It is the Story of Israel that comes to its completion in the Story of Jesus, who is Messiah of Israel, Lord over all, and the Davidic Savior. There is one and only one gospel, and it was preached by Jesus, by Paul, and by Peter. To gospel is to tell that story about Jesus. Salvation flows from that sotry, but the story is both bigger than and framed differently from the Plan of Salvation approach to the gospel. The apostles were the original evangelicals (131).
The gospel according to Scot’s reading is a Story which has a beginning, middle and end. One more quote:
This gospel culture does not displace salvation but puts salvation in the context of a gospel story that has a beginning (in creation and covenant with Israel), a middle (David), and a resolution (Jesus and final redemption) (131).
The last two chapters of the book address the question of evangelism and will allow us to see how Scot envisages contemporary proclamation of the gospel. Before we look at those pragmatic questions what should be said of his thesis? How do we assess Scot’s view?
Is the NT gospel more than good news about individual salvation from sin? Is there a difference between the Plan of Salvation and the Method of Persuasion and the gospel?