We started a new study at my house last night. We’re using the Q Society video titled “The Whole Gospel” to kick off our conversations. I know from watching the reactions of some of the people in the room that this video caught us a bit off guard, especially the part where Tim Keel says something like…
If your definition of the gospel is that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins so that you could go to heaven… aaaannn (holds up big X), you’re wrong!
Thankfully he went on to explain that while this is definitely a part of the gospel, it is just a bit short sighted. The gospel has so much more to offer! The reality is, if we stop there then we are, for lack of a better term, neutering the gospel. I believe that this is one of the biggest problems the Evangelical Church faces as we move into the 21st century. As Tim Keel puts it, our problem does not lie within our current methods of sharing the gospel, rather it lies within our incomplete definition of the gospel itself!
Here are some highlights from our discussion tonight and Tim Keel’s sermon.
- The gospel is based on 4 Biblical movements that are seen throughout scripture. Creation, Fall, Redemption & Restoration
- The gospel is the movement of Gods people from the fractured edges of society back into the center of Gods will and community.
- John’s gospel is the re-telling of the creation narrative.
- The priestly sacrifice (salvation through sacrifice) moves us from unholy to holy. While this is an important part of the gospel, why is it that Jesus seems to engage this the least in His teachings? Why do we spend so much time on it?
- Instead of asking, “If you knew you were going to die tonight, are you sure you’d go to heaven?” we should be asking, “If you knew you had 20 years to live, what kind of life would you live?”
These are subtle points, but I believe they make a huge difference in the way we engage our communities with the gospel. What are your thoughts?