What is that gospel message anyway, and just who is it for? Well I can start by telling you what it isn’t. It is not a message promoting a weekly gathering of people who try and separate themselves from the ungodly. It is not a list of do’s and do nots that we can measure ourselves and those around us. Church has an important role in the life of the believer but the good news that is known on the inside needs to be delivered to those on the outside. The reason the majority of us are on the inside is because someone shared the good news with us when we were knee deep in the mess of our own making.
Here are some great quotes from Jesus Himself that will reveal His character and what His purpose is.
- For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”
- “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. 13 But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”
- John 6:35 And Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst. 36 But I said to you that you have seen Me and yet do not believe. 37 All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out. 38 For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. 39 This is the will of the Father who sent Me, that of all He has given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day. 40 And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.”
These are just a few I can think of but you can see even in these few quotes of His that the message He brought was not one of condemnation but is great news as it promises to take you from a lost and deathly ill state to one of life. If we are willing to trust Him with our lives then you will see that He is able to do what He says. It is not a self help program showing you how to be better behaved. The actions of sin are clearly spelled out in the bible so we can all see that we have that disease with no exceptions other then the son of God Himself.
He is still coming to people all over the earth today to receive them into the kingdom and show them a new and better way. You go from only being sort of loved by others that is very conditional, to being adopted into a family where you are wanted & loved. Jesus pays the ransom for you in blood and your name is added to the book of life.
The Spirit of God Himself now resides in you and will lead and teach you how to live this life as a son or daughter of the true king. It is a time to learn and unlearn. The laws of the kingdom of God are very much opposite to the laws we learn here. Since we are citizens of God’s kingdom we learn kingdom ways. If you want to prosper you become good at giving part of what you have away to help someone else. This world is full of lack but the kingdom of God is a kingdom of abundance and fullness. Want to climb the ladder of success now? Then forsake pride and it’s ways and walk in humility, seeing others as greater then yourself.
Although we are now new and different then we were before Jesus saved us, we are not without trials and suffering. These things can be tools to transform our characters into the very likeness of Christ. Seeing God’s faithfulness in these times will establish God as very relevant in your life and His reality in this world. I have a caution for you that I will illustrate with this picture.
Imagine yourself sailing in a land where pirates are plentiful, and there is a pirate ship bearing down on you. You know if you are caught by them that you will be one again made a slave and be tormented the rest of your days. Jesus is your captain and you are the 1st mate. Your blood is pumping fast and your ears are open to every command. You discover that your captain is very skilled and has no fear at all. You begin to realize that although there is danger all around you, that you are safer then you have ever been. His strategies seem odd and you think you know better but you submit to Him and discover that His ways lead to success. You grow in trust and wisdom in this environment and discover more about who you are and who you were created to be. The challenges of this voyage has made you more like your captain.
Now let’s suppose now that you are sailing in a sea that is calm. You are in a land much like the Caribbean that is warm and the scenery is beautiful. You see the palm trees on the islands you sail past and in these waters there are no pirates in sight. You are here with your captain Jesus. He teaches you about the ship and how to sail it. At first you are interested but as time goes on you become distracted and want to relax. You don’t feel that what He is sharing with you is really that important as you see no threats. So you recline in the sun and the voice of Jesus begins to fade away as you drift off to sleep. Drift is the operative word here. If we do not live our lives intentionally then our lives will drift. This strategy of the devil has proven successful against me personally. Once the devil discovers where you are weak he will try and exploit it.
When something wakes us from our sleep we will discover that we have drifted way off course and we are no longer going towards the kingdom. In fact you will be confused as to where you are and what your status really is. Your eyes will not see your captain nor will your ears hear His voice. The person whom you took for granted will be sorely missed. Now we find fear overtaking us and the beauty that was around us when we closed our eyes has gone and now we see pirate flags and ships bearing down on us. We try and get our sailboat to sail quickly away but we realize we never learned everything we needed to know to sail this vessel.
What happens after that is anyone’s guess. It is our reaction to things that will determine the course from this point forward. Some will be captured and taken back to where they began. Some will try and fight the enemy but will just get beat up worse. Some will fall to their knees and cry out for Jesus. Whatever we do we need to remember that our situations are very fluid. Even if we make bad choice after bad choice it is the desire of God that we are restored. He is never looking at you and thinking “ this will teach you to reject or ignore me. I hope you suffer!”. The liar may speak that in your ear but God will never say or think that. While you have breath in your lungs you have the choice to fall to your knees and get right with God. Turn your heart towards Him and you will start to hear and see Him in you life again. He is always within earshot and He has never really abandoned us but why we are in rebellion or going our own way our spiritual senses just fall asleep and remember that God is spirit.
You see God is good and His ways are higher then ours. Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” John 16:11 Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.
You see the gospel of Christ truly is good news for everyone who has an honest look at themselves and see their situation as it truly is. He is the hope of every man and woman alive. If you are a believer now then please don’t keep the good news to yourself like it is a secret. Tell someone for God’s sake! The gospel of Jesus is what I find myself….. Just Thinking