You turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead—Jesus, who rescues us from the coming wrath. 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10 (NIV)
The church exists to proclaim that Jesus is the Son of God, that through His death He bore the wrath of God, and that our risen King is coming to take His people into the presence of God.
These things are so central to the message of Christianity, that…
- If we could show everybody how to navigate life, answer all human problems, mend all marriages, and heal all wounds, and we did not proclaim Christ, we would not have fulfilled our commission.
- If we could restore morality to the nation, cleanse Hollywood, and sanctify network television, and we did not proclaim Christ, we would not have completed our work.
- If we could provide meaningful relationships and personal fulfillment for everyone, and we did not proclaim Christ, we would not have fulfilled our calling.
The health of a church and the effectiveness of a ministry cannot be judged by numbers, or programs, or relationships, or commitments, but rather by the degree to which people have placed their confidence in Jesus Christ and found Him to be sufficient.
That’s the message. The gospel exalts Jesus Christ and we can count on the Holy Spirit to honor this gospel with His presence and power.
What are you most tempted to place at the center of Christianity (at the expense of the gospel)? Why?