Our greatest spiritual need is the gospel. The gospel saves us and empowers in everyday, mundane life. As I have pointed out in the past one of the books that has helped me grow in my love and appreciation of the gospel is the little book “A Gospel Primer For Christians” by Milton Vincent. Every so often I pick this book off of the bookshelf and delight again in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
Based on my ongoing need for the gospel I have made a decision. Everyday for the next 31 days I am going to post an excerpt from the “Gospel Primer” to strengthen my own faith and hopefully to encourage a few brothers and sisters along the way.
REASONS TO REHEARSE THE GOSPEL
Day 1-The New Testament Model
The New Testament teaches that Christians ought to hear the gospel as much as non-Christians do. In fact, in the first chapter of Romans the Apostle Paul tells the believers in the church that he was anxious “to preach the gospel to you who are at Rome.” 1 Of course, he was anxious to preach the gospel to non-Christians at Rome, yet he specifically states that he was eager to preach it to the believers as well.
To the Corinthian Christians who had already believed and been saved by the gospel, Paul says, “I make known to you the gospel, which you have believed…”2 He then restates the historical facts of the gospel before showing them how these gospel facts apply to their beliefs about the afterlife. This is actually Paul’s approach to various other issues throughout the book of 1 Corinthians.
In most of Paul’s letters to churches, sizeable portions of them are given over to rehearsing gospel truths. For example. Ephesians 1-3 is all gospel, Colossians 1-2 is gospel, and Romans 1-11 is gospel. The remainder of such books shows specifically how to bring these gospel truths to bear on life. Re-preaching the gospel and then showing how it applied to life was Paul’s choice method for ministering to believers, thereby providing a divinely inspired pattern for me to follow when ministering to myself and to other believers.
1-Romans 1:15 “So for my part, I am eager to preach the gospel to [lit. “evangelize”] you who are in Rome.
2-1 Corinthians 15. (1) Now I make known to you, brethren, the gospel which I preached to you, which you also received, in which you stand, (2) by which you also are saved, if you hold fast the word which I preached to you, unless you believed in vain. (3) For I delivered to you as of first importance…that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, (4) and that He was buried, and that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures.”
Day 2 will be “My Daily Need”