I thank God that the Gospel of Jesus Christ was preached to me, that the Spirit drew and convicted me, the Father gave me to the Son, and the Son did all that was necessary to purchase and secure my salvation. As you look upon your life and the lives of those around you is the power of the Gospel to transform readily evident? Has it changed your life or has it hardened your heart? Are you busily at work trying to earn grace…by a code of moralism that cannot save? Only the Gospel can transform you by bringing you the Word of God.
The Power of the Gospel
Every false religion ranging from Hinduism to New Agers, Jehovah’s Witness to Mormonism, or any derivative of the Social Gospel and Moralism are either man’s best effort at appeasing God or a corruption of the doctrines of grace found in the Scriptures. The false assumption underlying any and all of these is that fallen man can do something to earn God’s grace and please Him….which is no Gospel at all, but a misplaced trust in the goodness of man.
Social Transformation is good but has no lasting power
Soup kitchens, food pantries, and clothing drives all have their place within the framework of the love we are to show others, but if those actions are devoid of the transforming power of the Gospel and rely solely on the falsity of a humanistic worldview they cannot save. Feeding the poor and caring for the downtrodden are Biblical mandates but they will not save you. …..only the power of the Gospel to transform lives can and will have any lasting effect.
Defending the unborn, preserving a God-given definition of marriage, and caring for the elderly are noble works but none can wash away the sin that man is born into. The very need to pursue such endeavors is a sign that something is very wrong with humanity and the world we live in: things are not as they should be and a man centered gospel is merely looking to the cause of the problem in an effort to remedy it.
The Gospel of Jesus Christ has Power
4 But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, 5 even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—
But God……those words are an amazing comfort ringing forth from the pages of Scripture revealing that God, by His grace, has performed a work, through the power of the Gospel, in the life of the sinner apart from man’s futile efforts to earn it.
- You were dead in your trespasses and sins…But God
- You walked according to the course of this world…But God
- You walked according to the prince of the power of the air….But God
- Among whom we all once conducted ourselves…But God
- While we were all fulfilling the desires of the flesh…But God
- And we who were by Nature children of wrath….But God
BUT GOD, who is rich in mercy and because of His great love, even while we were still dead, made us alive with Christ. For it is by this grace that we have been saved through faith, and not of ourselves, it is the Gift of God, and not of works lest we should boast ( Eph. 2:1-8 ). God is the one who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints and delivered us from darkness into Light ( Colossians 1:12-13 ). It is through the faith in the working of God that He is transforming dead sinners into living saints with the circumcision made without hands ( Colossians 2:11-13 ).
The Power of the Gospel in our Lives
The Power of the Gospel renews our minds and transforms us so that we may prove what the will of God is ( Romans 12:2 ). The will of God is:
- Galatians 1:4 That He might rescue us from this present evil age
- Colossians 1:27 God willed to make known the riches of the glory of the mystery which is in Christ Jesus
- 1 Thessalonians 4:3 That we will be sanctified and abstain from sexual immorality
- 1 Thessalonians 5:18 For us to be thankful
- 1 Peter 2:15 That we do right to silence the ignorance of foolish men
- 1 Peter 4:19 Even sometimes to suffer for Him
Can you do any one of those things by your own efforts in a manner worthy of Heaven? Can you be pure, loving, thankful, or do the right thing in suffering by simply willing it to be so? Or must you be born again by the power of the Gospel and by having been transformed into a new creature you can now begin to leave the old things behind ( 2 Cor 5:17 )
Thanks for the Gospel
If you are a child of God look to your past and praise Him for graciously transforming and saving you from the depravity that consumed your life.
If you have never been born again and are wondering what must I do to be saved remember what Paul told the jailer, ” Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household ” ( Acts 16:31 ). Then you can praise Him for the power of the Gospel and say, but for the grace of God there go I.