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What the Gospel Isn't

Greetings CrossTrain family! We’ve done it! We’ve taken the last year to go through 26 verses to memorize and teach our families so we can set the foundational truths on which our faith can stand. There is no greater gift we can give our families than the gift of God’s word stored in their heart, trusting God when He tells us that faith comes by hearing of the word. Our households are our primary mission field and we ought never stop sowing into them with the word. It’s been a big, year-long journey, and our desire is that we would be able to use these scriptures to clearly lay out what the Gospel actually is. Please, PLEASE take a few minutes to read what I believe is one of the greatest explanations of what the Gospel is, as delivered by a personal hero of the faith, R.C. Sproul in the following passage.

“What is the Gospel? When you look at the word “euangelion” you know that it simply means “message”. It is described as being a good message.[…]. Let me tell you what the gospel isn’t. The gospel is not your personal testimony. Your personal testimony is a good thing and we are called to testify to the greatness of Christ and what he’s meant for us in our lives and it’s a wonderful thing. But giving your personal testimony is pre-evangelism, it's not evangelism. Evangelism is proclaiming the gospel. And to say that God loves all people unconditionally is not the gospel, it's not even true. Or to say that God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life, that's not the gospel. The gospel in the New Testament is the gospel about Jesus, who he is, his work, and what he has done. Some say "the gospel means I can be forgiven of my sins", and it does. Or they say "the gospel means I can have a meaningful life", and yes it does. But those are consequences and results, they are not the gospel. The gospel is a clearly defined message. If you want to see what it is, go to the sermons and the preaching of the book of Acts. Notice and underscore the context of those sermons. There you will discover what the gospel is. It's about Jesus who was born according to the Scriptures, who lived a sinless life, and who died an atoning death on the cross and for our righteousness he raised him from the dead and carried him in glory to heaven for his coronation as our king and for his installation as our great high priest who ministers for us every day and who will come again at the end of history to bring the fullness of his kingdom which has begun already but will not be completely manifested and consummated until his return. That's the “objective data” of the gospel, but that's only part of the gospel. The rest is the question of the subjective appropriation of the benefits of Christ that accrue to us. So the objective data is the data concerning the person and work of Jesus that is to be received savingly by faith and by faith alone. Rome (the catholic church) understood the data, believed in the virgin birth, believed in the atonement, believed in miracles, believed all that. But in the 16th century when it came to the appropriation of the benefits of the person and work of Christ, they condemned the gospel! Anathematized the gospel! And they stopped being a church. What greater sin is there than to deny how we are saved by and through the gospel? That's why Paul said there is no other gospel, and that the gospel has its fullness in and includes how we are justified by faith and by faith alone. He concludes his passage when he speaks of the righteousness of God, not righteousness by which God himself is righteous but the righteousness by which we ourselves are justified in his presence. Therefore Paul comes to the conclusion that "the just shall live by faith” (Romans 1:17). There is the transforming power of the gospel which begins in the mind of God, is accomplished by the Son of God, and is applied by the power of God in his Holy Spirit. How can you possibly improve on that gospel? If there ever was a fool's errand it was the errand that people chase when they think they can come up with a better gospel. It's the gospel of God. He composed it and he commanded it for us and for our people and our children forever. It's his gospel empowered by his spirit that transforms our lives that must be received in repentance and in faith.” - R.C Sproul

This summarizes all that Family Ministry has hoped to equip families to be able to teach by using God’s word. As parents saved by the Lord Jesus Christ, we have His Holy Spirit in us. He has saved us unto good works, not least of them being raising our children to know and love the Lord. His Spirit empowers and guides us to do this. His word equips, teaches, and corrects us. We have all we need to do what he has called us to do. We hope everyone revisits these messages and scriptures regularly and that we would learn to discuss them as we go along our days. They are to be the lens by which we and our children view the world. It is the lens of truth.

We will continue to be in prayer for all our families and we look forward to what God has in store next for family ministry!. We genuinely love each one of you and are honored to link arms with you all as we move forward to spread the Gospel and advance the Kingdom of Christ our King. The gates of hell will not prevail against it, and of it’s increase there will be not end! God saves sinners, even the ones living with us! May God richly bless you by the grace and mercy won by Jesus Christ!

In Christ,

Adam and Audra Griffin

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