We have heard about the “The Gospel” – the foundation of the Christian faith. Today there seems to be many different versions of how the gospel is interpreted, what the Gospel is or what it means.
The gospel is normally explained by saying, “Jesus died on the cross so that my sins may be forgiven”. This explanation is correct, but is it the fullest answer?
In the Christian faith, a tremendous amount of focus is placed on the death of Jesus, and quite rightly so, for it was the ultimate sacrifice paid for mankind’s sin. A debit that God paid in order that we might have opportunity to have our wrong doings wiped away…as far as the East is from the West. This is an amazing thought and one worthy of our focus.
So…. the gospel shows us how we are forgiven our sin – but then what? Is that the end of the story?
We have seen from past articles that Adam lost his likeness to God through disobedience. He gained a sinful nature and passed this nature down the line of mankind. Therefore, every human being is born with a sinful nature – an engine if you like – that drives us to sin. This drive to sin comes about automatically and is so natural that we are powerless to resist.
All of mankind, irrespective of culture, is bound by this self-centred nature. This all adds up to a pretty miserable and difficult existence. No tolerance or respect for one another.
However, the gospel of the Kingdom shows us the next step in the death and burial of Jesus. A continuation of the story. The scriptures show us that on the third day, Jesus rose from the grave. It also shows us that around 500 people witnessed this event. This is an historical fact.
The Apostle Paul asks a very pertinent question in the book of Romans. “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound – God forbid”. Paul goes onto explain that our old sinful NATURE was buried with Jesus – the engine which drives us to sin. Hallelujah – we are therefore no longer slaves to the sinful nature – we don’t have to sin any more.
He continues by saying that if our old sinful nature died and was buried with Jesus, then also we were raised up in the newness of life with him.
So… the gospel of the Kingdom shows us that we have power to overcome the temptation to sin by the fact that Jesus took away our sinful natures. This is worth focussing on!
This makes the gospel real in our personal lives. Yes, Jesus died for our sins, but He also died that we might walk in victory daily!!
Here is a point to ponder – how many services have we attended in honour of the resurrection of Jesus and heard that He took away our sinful natures?
The resurrected Jesus gives us a toolbox to use in our daily lives. This toolbox helps us through our walk on earth. It helps us stand firm as we are sanctified (made more like Jesus) – daily, a bit at a time. The final reward will be when we hear His voice saying to us, “Well done, good and faithful servant”.
The toolbox is the resurrected Jesus – the Holy Spirit! We don’t have to look outside ourselves to find God – He lives within us!
We are the temple of His Holy Spirit.
By all means focus on the fact that Jesus died for your sins, but never forget the fact that the resurrected Jesus lives within you – the very character of God, giving you power to overcome the sinful nature and granting you wisdom and knowledge about life circumstances.
When we are confronted by life’s tests and trials, will it be necessary for us to ask the question, “What would Jesus do?”
With His character firmly within in us, the question is, “Will we allow Jesus to do what He needs to?” …..
From: “…time with the Master…”
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