In my last blog, I began a series by discussing how unattractive the Gospel is to a person who has not been born again. I referred to one of my favorite books of all time, Hard To Believe, by John MacArthur. This book does an incredible job of explaining the Gospel, the necessity of presenting it faithfully, and understanding that the Holy Spirit is responsible for the work in the heart. MacArthur gives five strategies, as he calls it, but they are more like admonitions - I want to take the next several blogs to remind us of them as we share the Gospel in our day to day lives….
The first admonition he mentions is found in 2nd Corinth. 4:1 “Therefore, since we have this ministry, as we have received mercy, we do not lose heart.” The admonition is: Don’t Surrender In Cowardice. Paul assumed people would reject him - he knew that hatred would meet him at every corner, and the same should be true with us. In a culture (even in many of our churches) which has so watered down, changed and twisted the Gospel, the true call of the cross, the true explanation of Lordship, it is too often met with hatred. You had people in that day that called Paul a liar, who said he was preaching a false Gospel - all because he was teaching what God required and not what the religious group had heard all their life. All we need to do is read Luke chapters 1-4 and watch the change. In Luke 1 – 4 (about halfway through chapter 4) Jesus’ ministry is going pretty well, but when He has the audacity to stand up and preach the truth in His home town to those who knew Him best, they rose up and wanted to throw Him off a cliff. We should be reminded that the true Gospel was no more of a crowd pleaser then, than it is today. One of the most wicked lies today, is that it is easy to become a Christian - the truth is, it is difficult! It is through a narrow gate - a brokenness over self, dying to yourself, forsaking all and turning to Christ. For this to happen, it takes a miracle of God, not a slick talk, promises of wealth or fame, a cool track, or even a former Miss America pageant winner.
One can afford to be wrong when it comes to secondary issues of our eschatology… or can differ from you or me on some secondary doctrinal issues, but the great tragedy is that there are far too many who miss the Gospel today. When one misses the Gospel, they miss eternal life. The way I view the Gospel determines the methods I will use in presenting the Gospel - or if I present it at all. As we are sharing the truth of Gospel, let’s not be ashamed of it… let’s present it the way Christ did - not add to or soften it - let’s be passionate about it and let’s watch God do His saving work!