The Message we Preach

What is the Gospel?

All You Need is Love?

All You Need is Love? That's the Beatles, not the Bible.

The typical evangelical Gospel message makes very little sense to the unsaved. Without mentioning the reason why people are perishing, their love of evil, their outright hatred for God and their rejection of God's mercy, in a word: sin, the sinner would have no motivation to abandon their sin and run towards the Savior. Most of them don't even know that they are in danger of God's judgment. Perish from what? An unrepentant sinner will have to face God on judgment day and it will be the holy and righteous God who will punish all evildoers and cast them into an eternal hell. An unrepentant sinner will perish, ultimately, in the hands of an angry God.

By taking away the punch of the Gospel - sin, judgment and God's Holiness - we are left with a squishy message that's no different than any other self-help religion in the market place of ideas. In the Bible, God's love always shines on the darkened backdrop of our sorry sinful state. When Christ said "Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends." (John 15:13), He demonstrated this by laying down His life for us on the cross. It points to the fact that we do need someone to take away our sin.

So often we say to our unbelieving friends: "See, God loves you and died on the cross for you" without the mention of sin, judgment and hell. Such rhetoric is not only cliché and overdone, it makes absolutely no sense. Why should a sinner who is blind to his own sinfulness, and is thoroughly impressed and satisfied with his own goodness, need a savior on the cross? He might need a life coach to whip some aspect of his life into better shape. He might need a divine girlfriend in the sky who he can sing love songs to and feel some kind of transcendent feeling on a cosmic level. He might need a "god" who is going to smile upon all his shortcomings and "mistakes" and validate every "good deed" he performs as he tries to climb the spiritual ladder. He might need all these things but He doesn't need a Savior and He doesn't need God.

A Gospel message presented without the preaching of sin, judgment and hell is either completely senseless to the unsaved or it can only be presented to fit into the pragmatic mindset of the ungodly. It falls way short of the glorious Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ revealed in the Bible.

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