The Gospel is the revelation of God’s love through Jesus Christ.
Why am I convinced that most people don’t know the gospel? Because they have no joy…those who receive the gospel ought to be the happiest, most joyful people in the world. Yet many believers are far from joyful. They may be smiling on the outside, but on the inside they are anxious, insecure, and battling with guilt and condemnation.
Paul led a church for many years and preached the gospel without knowing what it was. He thought is was the gospel but it was actually an inferior imitation. Like many preachers, his motives were pure, but he was often puzzled why people weren’t more joyful.
I sold the grace of God on credit. “Buy now, pay later. Sign up today, the first month’s free. But once you’ve settled in we need to talk about personal responsibility, discipleship, and the true cost of following Jesus.” I had the right jargon but the wrong theology. It was love with a hook and grace with a price tag.
Most Christians agree that “We’re saved by grace. Live by grace. It’s all by grace,” but they’re sweating on the hamster wheel of Christian service and going nowhere fast because they still try to become what they already are or are trying to get what they already possess by avoiding evil and doing good.
If this is you, the problem is not your effort of desire, it’s your gospel. It’s contaminated. You’re drinking from a poisened well, and it’s making you ill.
Furthermore, Paul gives this definition of the Gospel:
The gospel is the glad and merry news that God is good, He loves you, and He will happily give up everything He has so He can have you. Contrary to popular believe God is not mad at you. He is not even in a bad mood. The good news declares that God is happy, He is for you, and He wants to share His live with you forever.
The gospel is good news. Any gospel that leaves you insecure and uncertain, forever wondering, Am I accepted? Am I forgiven? Is not good news. Any gospel that demands you sign up for a lifetime of progessive sanctification and yet offers no guarentee that you will ever make it, is not good news.
He then discribes ten revelations of grace: that you are loved, forgiven, saved, in union, accepted, holy, righteous, dead to sin, new and royal. There are more blessings in Christ, but this book covers ten of them, hence the title The Gospel in Ten Words.
The book is packed with truth about who you are and why you were born – that is living loved.
It is an easy read, well structured, instructive, and here and there spiced up with illustrations and humor.
Each of the ten chapters stands on it’s own and can be read on it’s own so it could be easily used as a devotional or study guide for small groups.
I appreciate that the last chapter talks about our role as a priest to serve and as a king to rule because we’re called to do the works of Jesus from a place of being confident in who we are. Authority and power is given to reveal Christ the King and bring the Kingdom by healing the sick, setting the oppressed free, etc.
As I read the book I felt totally refreshed by the Fathers untained, unfailing, and unconditional love towards me and caused me a few times to have a grin from ear to ear as I felt His pleasure over me.
On the scale of one to ten, I’d give it a 9,8. It’s a crystal clear New Covenant Grace book. Highly recommended.
Ok, one last quote to wet your appetite.
The ministry of reconciliation is not telling people that a huffy God waits for them to sooth his offended ego with a bunch of repentance flowers and a box of confession chocolates. It is the thrill of proclaiming the glad, happy news that God loves them, His face is turned towards them, and He hold nothing against them.
If you’re looking for the Gospel of grace written in undiluted, unpoisened, non-religous fashion or want to understand in a fresh way how the Father sees you, this book is for you.
Click here to check out The Gospel in Ten Words.