The meaning of the gospel, the good news, is that Jesus Christ has finished the work of forgiveness. Because of the gospel, you are a forgiven person.
We heard the gospel message and we responded with faith: we believed in, relied on and put our trust in the gospel. Immediately, we were made into a new creation. We were born again!
We have not only received a second birth, but we have also been given a new identity. Our new identity is that of a forgiven person.
It is uncommon for a believer to understand this in the beginning of their new life with Jesus. Most of us spent years wandering in the wilderness of “works” trying to get forgiven. We spent years asking Him to forgive us; we continually repented and rededicated ourselves to a life of obedience.
But hopefully, by now, you have been set free from the legalistic way of life and have been set free from a religious mindset. Hopefully you have left behind the ‘wandering in the wilderness’ and have come to lie down in the green pastures of the Promised Land of Rest.
The book of Hebrews talks about this promised rest. The author tells us that there remains a rest, a Sabbath rest, for the people of God.
or if Joshua had given them rest, then He would not afterward have spoken of another day. There remains therefore a rest for the people of God."
This rest occurs when we stop trying to get forgiven. You will find rest when you let go of that cursed life of wandering in circles in the wilderness of religion, of legalism, of Churchianity, of works-righteousness, or whatever you want to call it!
We enter His rest when we come to understand the true meaning of the gospel: that we are forgiven people.
Trust that Jesus has finished His work through His death, His burial and His resurrection: through the gospel. The work is finished, and He is RESTING!
Since God is resting, we may enter His rest as well.
For he who has entered His rest has himself also ceased from his works as God did from His.Hebrews 4:10
P.S.: for more on this topic of forgiveness, please listen to this excellent audio series by Aaron Budjen of Living God Ministries.