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The Gospel

Edited by John W. Robbins

The Gospel is the good news about the person and work of Jesus Christ, the second Adam. In the whole stream of human history there are only two men who have universal significance – Adam and Jesus Christ. Adam was not merely the biological father of the race; he was the legal representative of the whole human race. He acted for all. His sin involved all: “by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners…” (Romans 5:19). 

Consequently, the whole stream of human history has been corrupted by human sinfulness, and all stand under the judgment of the law. None of that history can satisfy the demand of holiness, for even the lives of the best saints fall far short of the glory of God. Into this sinful stream of human history, God sent forth his Son to be our “everlasting Father” (Isaiah 9:6), our second Adam, our new representative. His name was Immanuel – God with us.” 

In Jesus Christ we see God with us in poverty and humiliation, God with us in trial and sorrow, and finally, God with us in suffering and death. More than that, Jesus was “God…for us” (Romans 8:31). What he did in all his glorious acts of goodness was done for his people. It was done in our name and on our behalf, for he was our representative who acted for us before the bar of eternal justice. By his sinless life he fulfilled the precepts of the law for us, and by his death he satisfied the penalty of the law for us. On our behalf he strove with sin and annihilated its power. 

In his human nature he engaged the devil in hand-to-hand combat and destroyed his power. He tasted death and abolished it, “…having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And he has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. Having disarmed principalities and powers, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it” (Colossians 2:14, 15). 

All that Christ did is imputed to his people through faith. His victory is ours. So the apostle says, “By the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life” (Romans 5:18). 

There are three things we must say about this good news of Jesus Christ: 

1. The Gospel is about an historical event. It is about Jesus Christ coming into the world and not about Jesus Christ coming into our hearts. It is historically objective. 

Christianity is the only truly historical religion. It alone proclaims a salvation based on a concrete outside-of-me event. 

Of course, the Gospel has subjective benefits. It has effects and fruits in the hearts of all who believe it. But in the Gospel itself there is not one subjective element. It happened completely outside of you and me. 

The Gospel brings to view a new holy history – the thirty-three years which Jesus Christ lived on Earth. In the death of Jesus Christ, God rejected and punished our sinful history; and having buried it with Jesus Christ, he brought forth that new history. Now he proclaims to us that he accepts us as righteous solely on the basis that he has accepted his Son and our representative, Jesus Christ. 

The Gospel is the good news that the saving deeds have taken place, the redemptive transaction has been sealed by Christ’s blood and attested to by his resurrection from the dead. God’s liberating act has been carried out, and believers are cleansed, accepted, and restored in the person of Jesus Christ. The Gospel is historical. 

2. The Gospel is about a unique history. There is no other event, and can be no other event, like the Christ event. His holy history is unique. In the whole stream of human history, Christ alone is without sin. We must never compromise the unique sinlessness of Jesus Christ. Only one is absolutely righteous in reality and fact. 

The saints can be absolutely righteous only by the merciful reckoning of Christ’s righteousness by faith alone. No one but Christ, the slain Lamb, is able to open the book and look therein (Revelation 5:1-5). 

3. The Gospel is about an unrepeatable history. This is the great emphasis given by the writer of Hebrews. The offering of Christ was once and for all: 

By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. And every priest stands ministering daily and offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. But this Man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God, from that time waiting till his enemies are made his footstool. For by one offering he has perfected forever those who are being sanctified. (Hebrews 10:10-14) 

We are never called upon to initiate another redemptive event. Nothing needs to be added to what Christ has already done. Nothing can be added to it. God himself cannot add to it. We say it reverently but decidedly: This is one thing that God could not do again – the giving of and offering of his Son, Jesus Christ. 

Paul tells us that with him God gave us “all things” (Romans 8:32). To suggest that God could do this again is to imply that God did not really give everything the first time. But he emptied all Heaven in one gift. He poured out all the accumulated love of eternity. He kept nothing back, but gave all he had to give. The Gospel is unrepeatable history. 

This unique, unrepeatable event, this holy history of Jesus Christ, is the focal point of Biblical proclamation. These mighty deeds of the incarnate Son, this awesome, effective act of atonement, is the one great pre-occupation of the apostolic message. 

Gospel preaching is the constant exposition of this historical Gospel and the unfolding of its significance for men and women everywhere. All who believe are justified, not on the grounds of their faith, but on the grounds of the saving acts of God already done once and for all in Jesus Christ. 

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Unregenerate Christians are self-idenfied and not God-identified, therefore, they hate the doctrine that God has sovereignly elected some people for salvation. They misrepresent what Scripture clearly teaches, which is that God calls many, and of the many called a “few are chosen.”

To their way of thinking, a God who sovereignly chooses to save only the few and punish the many is not only an unjust judge but is also an evil monster. They say a God who saves only the elect and damns everyone else is unfair and unloving and bears a closer resemblance to the pagan deities of antiquity than to the God of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob.

If Scripture is God’s written Word and the Christian’s authority for all matters of faith and practice, then what it teaches about God is what is true, regardless of what people understand or believe is fair, just, and loving.

According to Scripture, God destroyed everyone in the world except for Noah and his family; He also destroyed everyone in Sodom and Gomorrah and surrounding cities except for Lot and his daughters. The question unregenerate Christians must answer is how can God destroy the entire world and its inhabitants, annihilate the cities on the plain and everyone in them, save only a few chosen people, and remain a loving God?

Scripture also says that God chose Israel above all people to be His treasured possession and servants on the earth, and He knows only Israel among all the families of the world. The question facing unregenerate Christians is how is it fair for God to choose Israel over all the nations and the Israelites over all people on the earth and make them His people, His servants, and His witnesses?

The Scripture is clear that God does not love every person equally. Paul writes in Romans that God loved Jacob and hated his brother Esau before the twin boys were born and had done any good or evil. In addition Paul writes that God decreed the elder would serve the younger, and that He elected Jacob instead of Esau to receive his father’s blessing when the birthright really belonged to Esau as the elder brother.

Paul clearly says that God cursed and hated Esau before the boy had been born or had done anything evil, so that “the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth.” The question for the unregenerate Christian is how is it right and just for God to hate and punish an unborn child before he’s born, and has done anything to warrant it?

In the same chapter of Romans Paul writes that God raised up Pharaoh to destroy him; and He hardened Pharaoh’s heart so that God’s power and name would be known and declared throughout the world.

It’s clear from Romans that God does what He pleases and no man can call Him to account or make Him responsible for anything He does. God is accountable to no one. He is bound by nothing. He has “mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth.”

Paul writes the potter has power over the clay to make from the same lump a vessel for honor and another for dishonor. Man was created to glorify God, and God is glorified through the vessels He has made. Everything God created is for His pleasure.

God is sovereign creator; what He does is just for nothing can constrain Him, and no law is above Him. God’s defining characteristic is holiness, not love; He is righteousness and justice. Who can hold Him responsible and say He is wrong in what He does? “Shall he that contendeth with the Almighty instruct him? he that reproveth God, let him answer it.”

The law is man’s taskmaster, not God’s. God is bound by nothing, no law constrains Him. He created the law. He cannot be judged by it. God is judge, and His judgments are righteous.

Man has no rights to which God must acknowledge and acquiesce. “Woe unto him that striveth with his Maker! Let the potsherd strive with the potsherds of the earth. Shall the clay say to him that fashioneth it, What makest thou?”

The truth is the unregenerate Christian’s interpretation of Scripture is a direct assault against God’s sovereignty, and he can’t believe what the Scripture clearly teaches because the unregenerate “receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”

I.M.Kane

 

 

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The Gospel is not:

you must be born again

you must repent

you must be saved

you must decide for Christ

you must trust Jesus

you must have a personal relationship with Christ

you must be filled with the Holy Spirit

you must be baptized with the Holy Spirit

you must speak in tongues

you can preform miracles

let Jesus into your heart

expect a miracle

Jesus set an example for us that we may follow Him to Heaven

let go and let God

draw nigh unto God

Christ died for all men and desires the salvation of all

Christians should take dominion over the earth

Jesus is coming again

The Gospel is

“that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures [emphasis mine]; And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures [emphasis mine]” I Corinthians 15: 3,4

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Nearly 8 Out of 10 Americans Accept Women Ministers

By Jerry A. Kane

According to a newly released survey by the Barna Group, 79 percent of Americans are comfortable with a female priest or pastor, but evangelicals remain largely uncomfortable with the idea.

I am woman watch me grow
See me standing toe to toe
As I spread my lovin’ arms across the land
But I’m still an embryo
With a long, long way to go
Until I make my brother understand

Oh yes, I am wise
But it’s wisdom born of pain
Yes, I’ve paid the price
But look how much I gained
If I have to, I can face anything
I am strong
(Strong)
I am invincible
(Invincible)
I am woman

According to Scripture, women should learn in silence, keep quiet, and be subject to the man and not teach or usurp authority over him. The reasons for this are that God created Adam first and Eve was created from Adam. Apart from God’s established created order, it was Eve who was deceived by Satan, not Adam. She was the one beguiled and believed Satan’s word over God’s, which led to man’s fall and sin entering the world (1 Timothy 2:11-14).

According to Scripture, only men should be in positions of spiritual teaching authority in the church. Women can teach other women and teach children, but they are restricted from having spiritual authority over men and from serving as pastors to men.

The question all self-identified Christians should answer is what the underlying authority for their faith is. Is it a Magisterium, an anointed Governing Body, a denomination’s doctrine, a Prophet/President, a charismatic preacher, or the Scripture? In other words, who or what determines your Christian theology.

Must I remember? Why, she would hang on him

As if increase of appetite had grown

By what it fed on, and yet, within a month—

Let me not think on ’t. Frailty, thy name is woman!

—Shakespeare, Hamlet: Act 1, Scene 2, lines 143-147

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