17 08 2011

by Stephen L Dunn

“You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free.” – Jesus, quoted in John 8:32

The Gospel is the Good News of the Kingdom of God.  It is the revelation that God  loves us and wants us to be an integral part of His eternal kingdom by delivering us from the power and the penalty of sin. There is bad news associated with the Gospel. That bad news is the reason we need the Gospel.  Sin has us in its grips and has deceived us into thinking we are free.

Henry Blackaby is credited with saying, “Truth is a person.”  That person is Jesus Christ,  The Good News is that he has come into the world to free us from our sin and invite us to be a part of His kingdom of love and grace.  Delivered from the power and penalty of sin – we are now truly free. We are free indeed!

Our world has a skewed view of the Gospel.  They think it’s about rules and restrictions, about squelching our human aspirations and impeding our spiritual quests. If truth does not come from within, but is revealed–then we can become slaves to or victims of whatever religious powers define as that truth.  If we must be accountable to God’s view of our humanity then will not truly be free.

At times, however, the proclaimers of the Gospel feed these attitudes. When we make the faith about believing in God instead of giving our lives to God, we make it possible for people to reject God because we don’t yet believe every jot and tittle of the Bible.  When we make the faith about becoming a part of our particular church culture, adhering to its practices instead of inviting us to become disciples of Jesus Christ, we make it the Gospel about a new set of behaviors and laws instead of renewing our minds so that we have the mind of Christ.  When we make the Gospel about an intellectual decision that follows an answer to every question we proffer instead of a lifestyle of trusting God to keep His promises, we allow people to compartmentalize their lives into ‘practical’ and ‘spiritual’ worlds and we never challenge them to live 24/7 for God.

The Gospel introduces us to the Truth that sets us free.  Let us make sure that it is the Gospel we proclaim instead of a counterfeit that once again ensnares people in slavery with spiritual explanations.  Let us make the Gospel about introducing them to Jesus.

(C) 2011 by Stephen L. Dunn

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