Sunday, March 19, 2006

Three gospels

Which of these is the correct expression of the gospel of Jesus Christ?

  • Every person who ever lived has sinned and fallen short of God’s righteous standard. But God loved the world so much that he sent his Son to earth. Jesus lived a perfect life and died on the cross in your place, so that you wouldn’t have to pay the penalty for your own sins. In order to receive the eternal life now made possible through his sacrifice, you must repent of your sin and accept God’s gift of grace. If you make this decision then you are reborn and will spend eternity with God in heaven.


  • God created a good world and put humans in paradise. But they rebelled against him and, in the process, became enslaved to sin and to the kingdom of evil. Jesus came to redeem God’s creation and establish God’s kingdom on earth. If you want to participate in this kingdom and enjoy an eternal kind of life, you must submit to Jesus as your Lord. This kingdom overcame evil in the resurrection of Jesus Christ. But the ultimate victory will not come until Jesus returns to inaugurate the new heavens and the new earth. In the meantime we work to advance God’s kingdom and oppose evil in every form in which we encounter it.


  • God loves you unconditionally just the way you are. There is nothing you can do to make God love you more than he does now. There is nothing you can do to make God love you less than he does now. However, pride gets in the way of God’s love. The only way we can experience God’s love is to come to him in our brokenness and sinfulness. When we do this, we receive his grace. We cannot earn his love. But because we are loved, we allow God’s spirit to work in our lives to produce the fruit of the Spirit.

So what do you think? Which is the true gospel?

Pastor Rod

“Helping you become the person God created you to be”

22 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm going to have to guess #3

Pastor Rod said...

Why do you like #3?

kletois said...

I would have chosen statement #1, but because it states 'spend eternity with God in heaven.', I have to reject it due to clear biblical teaching that we dwell with God forever on Earth. (Revelation 21 and 22).

Janeen said...

I choose number one, although I thought Gospel meant the description of Christ's coming and salvation... I don't know if the term is being used loosely.

Why isn't there spell check on this?

Pastor Rod said...

Janeen,

Thanks for your comment.

I assume you were asking about spell checking for your comments. What I do when I make sizable posts is compose them in Word. Then I cut and paste in the comments dialogue.

An alternative is to install the Google toolbar, which has spell-checking.

Pastor Rod said...

kletois,

I didn't mean to leave you out. Thanks for your comment. Revelation 21 & 22 talk about a "new" heaven and earth, right? That's likely different than anything any of us has in mind.

Mark O. Wilson said...

Can I vote for all three? There's wonderful truth in all of them.

Pastor Rod said...

Mark,

Welcome. Can't make up your mind, huh? :-)

MTF said...

I think #3 is the core message of Gospel "the good news." We cannot gain favor, make God love us or save ourselves by keeping the law. Christ came to tell us that by the grace of God we need only to accept Him and his unique sacrifice for us. Once we do that, we attain eternal life and the fruits. . .Here, now and forever.

Cristina said...

The bible clearly teaches ...Salvation is of the Lord

*Rom 3:11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God
*Psalms 10:4 The wicked in his proud countenance does not seek [God]; God [is] in none of his thoughts.
*John 1:12-13 12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the power to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: 13 who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God

*John 15:16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and [that] your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.
*Php 2:13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of [his] good pleasure.

Throughout all your descriptions of "The Gospel", it is man choosing God, when in fact we don't seek God at all.
He first draws us, and then we receive.
The Holy Spirit awakens the dead man.

Salavation is of God!

Psa 100:3 Know ye that the LORD he [is] God: [it is] he [that] hath made us, and not we ourselves; [we are] his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

Ezekiel 36:26-27 26 "I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. 27 "I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them.

Thankyou Lord for choosing me because I would not have sought you out, depraved and dead in sin as I was.

Salvation is of God!

Cristina

Trecubed said...

Cristina: I cannot disagree with anything you have said. Indeed, salvation is of God. We should not neglect the fact that He created us with free will--the will to choose His salvation or reject it. God's salvation is suffiecient for all who surrender their will to the Him. Can I get an "Amen?". MTF

Trecubed said...

I meant "Him"--not "the Him." and not to be confused with the "I Am!" MTF

Jeff Franczak said...

Using the common definition of the “gospel” being “good news”, I think all three summaries are part of the gospel of Jesus Christ. I see different aspects of the gospel in each of the three.

The second section reminds me that it is important for us to remember that God’s Kingdom has both a present and an eternal dimension. I am reminded of Jesus speaking in Luke 17:21, “nor will people say, 'Here it is,' or 'There it is,' because the kingdom of God is within [or among] you" (NIV).

I found the truths in number three particularly refreshing to me. And since I’ve read this section, I sense God has reminded me of His limitless and unconditional love and mercy more than once this weekend. In the outworking of my desire to be obedient and holy, I need to be frequently reminded that God’s love for me is unconditional. I need to experience God’s love, not just try to apprehend it intellectually. I also need to be reminded that the fruit of the Spirit is only produced in me as I yield to His grace and His will. When I do things in my own power, by definition, the results are not the fruits of the Spirit.

Regarding the Christian's eternity in God’s presence, I do not have a clear understanding of the “new heaven” and the “new earth” or how our resurrected and glorified bodies and souls will experience the new creation, but I would suggest that we should not divide over this point. Some of the key verses for me in Revelation chapters 21 and 22 are: (1) “…‘Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God’” 21:3.; (2) “I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp” 21:22-23.; (3) “Nothing impure will ever enter it…only those whose names are written in the Lamb's book of life” 21:27.; and (4) “He who testifies to these things says, ‘Yes, I am coming soon.’ Amen. Come, Lord Jesus” 22:20.

Growing in God’s grace,

- Jeff

Cristina said...

Trecube....yes we have a free will, but the nature of man is not to seek after God. We are born depraved...
John 5:40 And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life.


Rom 3:11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.

Jer 17:9 The heart [is] deceitful above all [things], and desperately wicked: who can know it?

Rom 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God

John 1:13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

So Trecube, if you are saying because we have a free will and we first choose God, no I can not "amen" that. If you cagree that even though we have a free will, our natural response is not to seek God before He draws us..then a great "AMEN" to you.

_Cristina

MTF said...

OK, Cristine. . .We do not disagree. God certainly has made the first move. He knocks at the door of our heart and like the good shepard, searches for the lost sheep.

Yet we humans are born with a desire for God. We may not recognize that it is He for whom we desire (the enemy certainly puts many substitutes in our way).

All glory to God and a sincere "Amen" to you, sister! MTF

Cristina said...

I know you don't want this discuseed so this is what I will leave you with ...you say that we all have a desire for God. Well The scriptures don't say that.I will not comment on this anymore and feel free to erase it, but I feel the Lord leading me ot defend His word. Now if I am wrong in what I see by your words, I truly ask for your forgiveness. But I beleive no one seeks after God or wants anything to do with God until He draws them as I said previously. Thankyou for listening..


Rom 3:11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.

John 3:19 And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

Luke 19:10 For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.

Gen 6:5 And GOD saw that the wickedness of man [was] great in the earth, and [that] every imagination of the thoughts of his heart [was] only evil continually.

Psalms 10:4 The wicked in his proud countenance does not seek [God]; God [is] in none of his thoughts.

Psalms 14:2-3 2 The LORD looks down from heaven upon the children of men, To see if there are any who understand, who seek God. 3 They have all turned aside, They have together become corrupt; There is none who does good, No, not one.

Psalms 119:155 Salvation [is] far from the wicked, For they do not seek Your statutes.

Isa 53:6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.

Isa 64:7 And [there is] none that calleth upon thy name, that stirreth up himself to take hold of thee: for thou hast hid thy face from us, and hast consumed us, because of our iniquities.

Isa 65:1 I am sought of [them that] asked not [for me]; I am found of [them that] sought me not: I said, Behold me, behold me, unto a nation [that] was not called by my name.

Hos 7:10 And the pride of Israel testifieth to his face: and they do not return to the LORD their God, nor seek him for all this.

Rom 10:20 But Esaias is very bold, and saith, I was found of them that sought me not; I was made manifest unto them that asked not after me.

Matthew 18:12-14 12 "What do you think? If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them goes astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine and go to the mountains to seek the one that is straying? 13 "And if he should find it, assuredly, I say to you, he rejoices more over that sheep than over the ninety-nine that did not go astray. 14 "Even so it is not the will of your Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish.

_Cristina

Cristina said...

and please forgive me for my typos..I type to fast and should check what I type more closely.

_Cristina

Pastor Rod said...

Christina,

Feel free to discuss this at length over at the other blog.

We are all in agreement that no one seeks after God on his or her own. We can only respond to God's call.

Rod

Cristina said...

Rod, Amen and thankyou. Enough said :)

Cristina

MTF said...

What other blog?

Pastor Rod said...

The other blog is Behind the Scenes. I'd prefer to keep any debates about choice and free will over there.

Rod

jazzycat said...

None of the three is the true gospel. However, one of the three will give a person eternal live. That would be #1.

Jazzycat