by MW Cook
In and out
A few days ago I tried a new little exercise in my English class. I presented A.W. Tozer’s book, The Knowledge of the Holy. I gave the book to people in the class and told them to open up to any page and pick out a word that they didn’t know. We would then talk about the word. For the first while it went as expected. People picked out words like concerned, repudiate, or comprehend. Then one man picked out a different word. He said, “Sir, what is Gospel?” What is the Gospel? I explained the meaning of the word itself as Good News, and I was giving a wonderful opportunity to give out the biblical meaning of the Gospel. What is the Gospel? The Gospel that we are to give as a reason for our hope, the Gospel that must be on our tongues and in our hearts in and out of season. Dwell on this for a second.
First, the bad news. You deserve to go to Hell. The infinite God promises great punishments to those who are in sin, and you have been in it since birth. You are daily adding to the already immense list of offenses against the almighty God. With every breath you fight against the only Power in the universe. You are hanging over the pit of Hell, as it were, by a tiny thread, every second moving closer and closer to your just end. There is no hope.
But there is hope, found outside of you. Jesus Christ, the righteous and holy Son of God. Born of a virgin more than two thousand years ago. He lived a perfect life in total accord with the character of God. He was betrayed by a friend, wrongfully tried and charged and condemned to death. Tortured and mutilated and forsaken by God His Father. He died. All in accordance with His own pre-ordained plan. He spent three days in the grave and rose victorious, having taken the punishment for your sin on His own body and rising to justify you, securing your hope and eternal life. He sits beside the Almighty ruler of the universe and says to Him, “That one, there, I died for him, forgive him for my sake, on account of my blood.” When He returns for His own He will call you, for you are now His. You will share in His reward. What good news!
The Gospel! Think about it! What an amazing thing! No wonder the Apostles seemed so crazy to their contemporaries! No wonder the saints of old were shunned and thought foolish by those around them. This wonderful good news should beget in us a burning fire that would consume us if we were to hold it in. Think about the Gospel, and then disseminate it.