Sunday, August 03, 2008
What is the Gospel?
Just getting down some points to flesh out later.
We know that the gospel is the good news that Jesus Christ has come in order to save sinners from their sins and that He is a perfect Savior who indeed shall save His people from their sins, and that He died and on the third day He rose again and that He ever lives to make intercession for us before the Father in Heaven.
But, what must this gospel have in it's proclamation for it to be genuine and Biblical?
I suggest if any of the following five things be absent, we no longer have a gospel to proclaim and have departed from the gospel, which is no small thing.
Much preaching today not only misses some of these five things, but may even miss all of them sadly.
5 essential points concerning "The Gospel"
Yes, the moral law. Those pesky commandments of God, delivered through Moses so long ago. The law shows us two fundamental principals we must grasp Biblically.
First is that the "God with whom we have to do", is a Holy God. These commandments are a reflection of who He is. He is holy and His law shows us His perfect moral character. That is the first thing. The second thing is that we have all broken God's laws and hence the Law is there to condemn us and show us our true state before a Holy God.
Miss the law in the preaching of the gospel and you have no gospel.
This is a big one. Justice. God absolutely hates sin and He can never ever tolerate sin or wink at it. God shall punish all sin in the universe. This is non negotiable from God's perspective. He is a God of complete justice, which again flows from His immutable Holiness. He shall by "no means" clear the guilty.
Miss the justice of God in the gospel and we have no gospel.
The gospel comes to sinners freely. What is offered in the gospel to sinners cannot be earned nor bought, but is given freely by God's sheer grace alone.
Absolutely free and undeserved. Anyone seeking to add anything to the free-ness of the gospel has destroyed the gospel and has actually placed a curse upon themselves. That is how serious the free-ness of the gospel is to be received.
This truth is vital in the preaching of the gospel otherwise you have no gospel.
Here is where the schismatics and those who love their denominations and traditions miss the gospel to sinners. Here is where the Catholics and the Protestants as well as the "landmark" baptists and the Wesleyan Holiness Church, and the Campbellite Church of Christ and the Adventists and all liberals and every other so called distinctive group of people misses the gospel.
The gospel is for the whole world. Not just for the Jew or any one group in particular. God has from every nation, tribe and tongue, a people for Christ.
Miss the universality of the gospel and you miss the gospel.
The gospel of God's grace to sinners is the Gospel from eternity past. It is a Gospel that saves them for whom it was intended to save. The gospel saves perfectly.
A gospel that saves us today but leaves us with no hope next week, next month or in 40 years time is no true gospel at all.
The gospel goes all the way from calling us to glorifying every sinner saved by it.
No one shall be plucked out of Christ's hand nor the Father's, and He who begins salvation shall bring it all the way to the end and raise us up at the last day.
Any gospel not eternal is no gospel at all.