E. Cobham Brewer 18101897. Dictionary of Phrase and Fable. 1898.
A panacea; a scheme to bring about some promised reform; a beau ideal. Of course the theological word is the Anglo-Saxon godspell, i.e. God and spel (a story), a translation of the Greek evangelion, the good story.
Mr. Carnegies gospel is the very thing for the transition period from social heathendom to social Christianity.Nineteenth Century (March, 1891. p. 380).