The Problem Concerning The Gospel 2009 09 20Presentation Transcript
The Problem Concerning the Gospel
Have you seen this painting before? “ Christ at Heart's Door” by Warner Sallman
Jesus is Knocking
“Many times sinners are told, ‘Jesus stands at the door of your hearts; you must decide to let Him in.’ This is based on a passage in Revelation (Rev 3:20) and the famous painting of Jesus at a door.”
“When you look at the painting of Jesus at the door, you notice there is no door knob on the outside; you have to let Him in.” 1
Let’s read Revelations 3:13-22 together.
2 Ibid DeWaay, Bob; “The Demise of Gospel Preaching in the Modern Evangelical Church”, Critical Issues Commentary, Issue #73, November/December 2002
Did You Know the Real Meaning?
“ The passage in Revelation about Jesus knocking at the door is given as an ironic rebuke to a church. The Laodicean church had become complacent and self-satisfied. Jesus would “reprove and discipline” those He loves ( Revelation 3:19 ). Jesus tells them to repent and open the door and so restore fellowship with their Lord ( Revelation 3:20 ).14 This was written to a church, not the lost. Its misuse in evangelism obscures the true nature of the gospel and the power of God. When Jesus saved Paul in Acts 9, He did not knock on Paul’s door to see if Paul would decide whether or not to let Him in.” 2
2 Ibid DeWaay, November/December 2002
Problems in Evangelical Christianity
The Gospel is being:
Twisted and distorted
What is an Evangelical?
“ The word “gospel” is a translation of the Greek work euaggelion from which we get our English word “evangel.” By definition “evangelical” means those who are committed to the gospel. Therefore, to claim that “evangelicals” are not preaching the gospel is a strong indictment.” 3
3 Ibid DeWaay, Bob, November/December 2002
Make a “decision for Jesus,”
“ Accept Jesus.”
“ Ask Jesus into your heart.”
“ God has a wonderful plan for your life.”
“ What would Jesus do? WWJD”
If you believe in Jesus, God will bless your life with abundance.
“ Say this prayer and you will be saved.”
“ and then Sign this card.”
When Witnessing to Someone What Do You Prefer?
Sharing your personal testimony.
Sharing the Gospel.
Witnessing to People
It has become very common in recent decades for Evangelical Christians to prefer using their own testimony.
While there is definitely a place for telling friends and neighbors about the difference that Christ has made in our lives or telling them how we came to faith through the gospel….
Why the Gospel?
Well, frankly, my story isn’t really that relevant.
My personal story will not save anybody. The gospel is the good news not about what Jesus will do , but about what Jesus Christ already has done for them.
The gospel is what happened to Jesus Christ . It is His life story, not ours.
Our lives are grafted onto His. We were dead in our sins and become born again upon the hearing of the gospel. The Holy Spirit reviving our dead bodies in Jesus Christ.
What happened to us is the result of the gospel, but it isn't the gospel.
We must become less, so that Christ may become more.
Why is the Gospel Important?
Why is the Gospel Important?
Nobody can be saved apart from hearing the Gospel.
What is the Gospel?
In the beginning, God created everything.
God created humans in His image .
In Adam, we all rebelled against God. We became His enemy .
God gave the world over to the curse of sin.
All of us are born into the slavery of sin.
On our own, we are justly destined for Hell .
However, God in His mercy and grace , has always had a plan of redemption to save the lost.
While we were still enemies of God, God sent his Son.
Born of a virgin .
He lived a sinless life.
Although innocent, He was crucified on a cross for all of our sins. He was the unblemished, sacrificial lamb.
He was raised from the dead and rules today at the right hand of God.
Eternal salvation is available to those who do two things:
1) Truly believe in your heart that Jesus Christ is your Lord and Savior and your only hope. 2) Repent from your sinful ways.
How Often Do We Need to Hear the Gospel?
Every Day! Throughout the day!
Why? To keep you. To remind you whose you are. It is the power of God.
They May Not Like What I Say
1 Corinthians 1:18-19
2 Corinthians 4:1-5
Yep. Not all will believe. The best efforts of the best evangelist cannot make all believe.
Fortunately, that is not our role.
Our command is to boldy share the Gospel.
God will decide who will believe.
The problem concerning the Gospel is that the Gospel is missing from our lives too much.