The Gospel is for Today

March 11, 2022
The gospel is for your joy today and the joy of your friends who interact with you. Why was Paul eager to preach the gospel to believers in Rome who were already Christians (Romans 1:15)? Because God wants them and us to grab hold of the truth that the gospel is the power for our daily lives today and for those who interact with us. In other words, we cannot love the gospel and at the same time treat others with displeasure. People see the gospel through how we submit to its power in us today. For some, we are the only gospel they will ever experience. There is nothing greater that we and others will experience today in our Christian journey than the gospel truths given to us.

One way the gospel changes us today is through how we view our relationship with God. The gospel moves us from an “if/then”  to a “because/therefore” relationship. The “if/then” relationship that most people live in believes that if they do what is right, then God will love them. This “if/then” relationship with God is conditional and is based solely on merit. What results is an attitude that thinks "look how great and holy I am because of my holy works and how unholy you are because of your lousy works." This is where pride and judgmentalism originate and love dies which effects everyone around us.

However, the gospel calls us to a “because/therefore” relationship with God. Because Christ died for us, therefore we are forgiven. Because Christ has fulfilled the law for us in our place, therefore we are free from the demands and penalty of the law. Because we have been justified by faith in Christ, therefore we have peace with God. This gospel-centered relationship is unconditional and is based solely on Christ’s merit graciously given to us which then produces in us more grace and love for those around us.

This change in relationship from "if/them" to "because/therefore" will change how we interact with everybody around us. The gospel's power within us reminds us that God humbly sent His Son to meet our eternal needs and so we are to do the same for others. When we remember the gospel power of Jesus' sacrificial life and death for us it empowers us to honestly love others without expecting something in response. The gospel informs us to humbly count others more significant than ourselves and look to the interests and needs of other over our own (Phil 2:3-4). The gospel fuels our self-sacrifice and commitment to others, giving up our wants and needs for the sake of others. The gospel creates within us a great joy and fulfillment in sacrifice for the sake of others rather than for ourselves because Jesus did the same for us.

The gospel is for your joy today and for those around you. Live in the power of the gospel today.

See you Sunday, humbled by the gospel, Steve

Romans 1:8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for all of you, because your faith is proclaimed in all the world.

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