Most churches share the gospel, but its anemic at best. Or at least that is the way it seems. I have searched through and listened to sermons, read gospel messages. And I find it disturbing how churches and pastors miss a couple of important truths.
Take for instance these words of encouragement for people to trust Christ:
Man is sinful and separated from God. Therefore, he cannot know and experience God’s love and plan for his life.
This is true as far as it goes; it just doesn’t go very far. Think about it from a different perspective. Suppose you are in the doctor’s office. He has something to tell you and it’s not good news. He says,
Well, the disease is going to make things hard for your family. So you really can’t get your family that big, dream house, unless you take this medicine.
I know maybe this is a little sarcastic, but I think the point is clear. If the disease is some terminal disease, the doctor is really sugar coating the news to the extent where you’re distracted from the core issue in man’s condition and from how urgent man’s situation is.
The Core Issue in man’s condition.
In salvation, what is the core issue?
- Is it that you are failing to live up to your potential?
- Is it that you are missing out on the biggest chance of a lifetime?
- Is it that you are losing precious time to really have a good life?
The Bible is clear, the core issue is sin and the consequences of that sin.
Romans 3:23 – For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
- Falling short of God’s Glory is all about doing things NOT for God’s glory. No sinner wants God to be magnified. So even the sinners best actions are sinful, because they are not for God’s glory.
- Sin is the idea that we have broken God’s law. Yes, there is a law, and we have broken it. Sin is not missing the law. It’s breaking it.
Romans 6:23 – For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
- Yes, the wages of sin is death and that does mean spiritual separation from God, sort of. Because God is omnipresent, there is no place we can go to get away from him. The Psalmist in Psalm 139, says that God is even in Sheol (the place of the dead). What’s my point? If we broke God’s Law, death is execution. It is not just some simple separation. People who are married get separated all the time. So, that doesn’t sound too bad, but the truth is, without Christ we are under the wrath of God (John 3:36)
- So when we share the gospel, this is what we need to keep in mind. Our condition is that we are sinners who have broken God’s law and we deserve punishment.
I know someone is going to say, but hey these churches baptize a lot of people don’t they? Well yes, but is it true conversion when a person “trusts” in a God who is not angry with them, is there to help them with their problems, or is there to give them a wonderful life?
Is it even the same God? Just because a group of people have many baptisms, does not mean those baptized truly understood the gospel.
Tomorrow, I will write briefly the second half of this post on the urgency.