Friday, June 2, 2017
A Christ-Centered Gospel
"It is the same with my word. I send it out, and it always produces fruit. It will accomplish all I want it to, and it will prosper everywhere I send it."
From time to time we hear of quack doctors who perform surgeries they aren’t qualified for. But there are some quack preachers out there too. They are guilty of spiritual malpractice because they present a gospel message that lacks the essentials. They tell people to just believe, but they don’t warn them of Hell. They don’t tell them of the importance of repentance. They don’t emphasize the death of Jesus on the cross. They don’t share that Jesus is the only way to God. Instead, they offer Jesus as though He were a product to buy that will make life a little bit better.
Sometimes people embrace a watered-down version of the gospel, and they have false hope as a result. That is why God said of false prophets, “They offer superficial treatments for my people’s mortal wound. They give assurances of peace when there is no peace” (Jeremiah 6:14).
When God led Philip to the desert to share the gospel with a government official from Ethiopia, his message was centered on the Scriptures. We read in Acts 8:35, “So beginning with this same Scripture, Philip told him the Good News about Jesus.”
Any effective presentation of the gospel must be biblical, because God’s Word will not return void (see Isaiah 55:11). Our words will return void, but God’s Word never will. Philip’s presentation of the gospel was centered on Jesus Christ. It is all about Him. The gospel is Jesus. It is Jesus born, crucified, resurrected from the dead, and coming again. It is a relationship with God through Jesus Christ, the only way to the Father.
The gospel, in a nutshell, is this: Christ died for our sins and was raised again on the third day. Embed that thought deeply into your mind—and then share it with others.