The Gospel Changes Everything
Strong and Courageous
October 4, 2018
The good news of redemption and grace given to us By God through the sacrifice of Jesus changes everything about who we are and how we think. Christianity is not just composed of a set of rules to obey and theological premises to hold intellectually. No, faith in Christ is so much more than these two things.
There is an aspect of vitality in relationship, which God has revealed to humanity through the passion of Christ.
Edward Fisher in his book titled The Marrow of Modern Divinity describes the power of the gospel in two distinct movements. “It first says, I am more sinful and flawed than I ever dared to believe, but then quickly follows with the second which says I am more accepted and loved than I ever dared hope.” The first outflanks a moral relativism. The second, overcomes the trap of legalism.
Terry Virgo describes God's scandalous and lavish grace in similar terms. There is nothing that a person can do to make God love them more or less. Our righteousness is found solely in the redemption and resurrection of Jesus Christ, not by following a prescribed set of rules. However, we need to be willing to allow the Holy Spirit to transform our thinking into the desire to be pleasing to God in the things that we do.
Tim Keller in his work titled Center Church brings forward the idea that “An authentic grasp of the gospel of Christ will bring increasing transformation and wholeness across all the dimensions of life that were marred by the fall of man. By removing the primary cause of all of our alienations our separation from God-it also treats the alienations that flow from it. The gospel addresses our greatest need and brings change and transformation to every area of life.” In other words, there is a vital relational aspect that remodels our thinking, bringing hope, purpose, and meaning to life. This renewal brings peace and rest to those who are burdened or downcast. This is the essence of the good news of the Gospel. The gospel is a story to be told, rather than just a lifestyle to be lived out.
Look at the following scriptures in this context from Romans Chapter 5 and Ephesians Chapters 1 and 2.
Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. For if while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.
Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
To the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight, making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ.
And what is the immeasurable greatness of his power toward us who believe, according to the working of his great might that he worked in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come.
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.