Bad News is there’s absolutely nothing we can do, nothing we can say, to earn God’s pardon and favor. “Apart from me”, says Jesus, “you can do nothing” (John 15:5). Our dilemma is that God is holy and we are not. Even so, God has graciously made a way out of the curse we live under. Amazingly he saves us from ourselves by sending Christ into enemy occupied territory on the greatest rescue mission ever launched. Because of Christ’s obedient life and finished work on the cross, the Holy King of the Universe reconciled himself to rebels, absolved their death sentence and causes them to willingly lay down their arms against him. The Bible says this news is the most important thing anyone will ever hear. (1 Cor 15:3).
The gospel is the historic fact of what God did to save us through the righteous life Jesus lived for us and the atoning death he died for us. The Bible tells us this Good News is the power of God for our justification, sanctification and glorification (Romans 1:16). It is for sinners, yes, but importantly it’s also for believers who need the gospel as much each day as when they first believed it and were saved. Pastor Tullian Tchividjian puts it this way, “The gospel does not simply ignite the Christian life; it is the fuel that keeps Christians going and growing every day. Real change cannot come apart from the gospel.” The gospel isn’t the starting point - it is the point. It is the point of everything!
Simply, the gospel saves bad fathers, weak husbands, even lousy followers of Jesus, and failing Christians which we all are on our best days. The Gospel is not about ‘do you feel it’ or ‘do you live it’ but do you believe it, do you trust it and savor it as the greatest thing in the universe. When you do, you’ll be abandoned to God and become, like the first disciples, a renegade from a culture working 24/7 to squeeze you into its mold of deceit and death.
Seventeenth century British clergyman Thomas Wilcox wrote, “To accept Christ’s righteousness alone, his blood alone for salvation, is the sum of the gospel.
In our ministries to men, we must always keep the gospel front and center lest we fall into the insipid tips, techniques and bromides of therapeutic moralism, which in the final analysis leaves men exhausted and discouraged and robbed of their freedom in Christ.
by Dave Brown, Director and Pastor-at-Large, Washington Area Coalition of Men's Ministries (WACMM)
The Gospel is not about trying harder, doing more, feeling better, being good enough, keeping rules, maximizing your potential or having your best life now. Nor is it good advice, having some subjective experience or looking inside yourself for answers. All of this stuff is religion or pop psychology or moral therapy.
The Bible tells us that God created everything very good. Our first parents were created very good, male and female, in the image of God, equal in value, worth, dignity and grace. But sin and death invaded their perfect Garden and everything became marred, twisted and distorted. A war broke out.
The truth is all of us are born rebels, idol worshipers and guilty of cosmic treason against God. That’s who we are and that’s what we do. We’ve made a horrid mess of ourselves, other people and the creation. We’ve thumbed our noses at God and turned in on ourselves.
Double click here to add text.
The Gospel – The Greatest Rescue Mission Ever Launched