Four Days, Four Crucial Points

9 May

The Gospel.

When I hear these words, I cannot help but think, Good News. It is a message given for all, and a message which all need.  The Gospel brings to us the mystery of Christ and His redemptive work on our behalf (Col. 2:2), and calls us to respond.  Through this message, God works and applies salvation.  Oh! what an amazing thing!

Yet, for many (and myself included at times), the Gospel doesn’t quite seem like enough.  Its not the right thing.  In the effort to walk in obedience to God’s calling to make disciples of all nations, we can sometimes drift into thinking we need to move beyond the Gospel.  We sacrifice the Gospel on the alter of human wisdom.  Surely we can find better ways of saving people and getting them into the church.

Persuade them with apologetics.
Tell them your testimony.
Put Jesus up as an example to follow.
Make Christianity more relevant.
Give people something they can do.

Yet, while each of these things may be good (though that could be debated), they fail to recognize everything that is wrapped up in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  In the next several posts, I want to look at four ideas that, God willing, will radically change the way you look at the Gospel.  No, they might not change the way in which you view the message (I do not want to create a new gospel), but my prayer is that they will change the way you view the significance of the message and its pure proclamation both inside and outside the church.

No. 1: The Gospel is TRUE.

You may believe this is an obvious point to make, but as more and more people focus on the moral/ethical aspects of Christianity, the historical claims of Christ’s life, death, and resurrection are regarded as unimportant.  Yet, these historical claims form the foundation of Christianity.  This is why Paul told the Corinthians:

“If Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain…If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied…If the dead are not raised, ‘Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.'”-1 Cor. 15:14,19,32

There is no reason to be a Christian if Christ has not been raised from the grave.  To have faith in a dead man is worthless.  But because Jesus was raised from the dead, there is a reason to believe.  Because the Gospel is grounded in historical fact, we can point to these facts when we proclaim this message to others, and be confident of our own beliefs.

 

Photo Credit: Ian Britton, taken 27 July 2007.

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