Are Christians Ever Done With the Gospel?
If you’re a Christian, you’ve heard the Gospel and acted on it. You heard that “good news” that Jesus, who is God, became man to die on the cross for your sin in your place to fully satisfy the wrath of God, He was buried, He and rose again. If you’re a Christian, you’ve repented of your sin and trusted in that “good news” for salvation from that sin. For many people, they think that’s the end of the Gospel in their lives. The Gospel is just something a person needs to believe to become a Christian and then it’s something in the past. That’s simply not true.
The Gospel is not just the beginning for a Christian, but is the Christian’s anchor in life and sustaining power. Paul says as much to the church in Corinth in I Corinthians 15:1-2, “Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain.”
The Gospel you received
This is what many think the Gospel is in their lives. It’s something you receive or believe and then you are saved. This is true. True belief in the Gospel is what is necessary for salvation. One must believe it in order to be justified. Notice too that Paul puts this action of the Gospel in the past. Because for every believer the Gospel has already been received, but the Gospel doesn’t stop there.
The Gospel in which you stand
Paul now states the present act of the Gospel. It’s what enables us to stand. To anchor ourselves, it gives us strength to bear what comes at us. We hold our ground in the Gospel. This is especially important for the theological war that is raging today. Whether it’s a lowering of God’s Word to incorporate worldly philosophies and even sin. Or an overlooking of God’s Word for the sake of “spiritual unity” for those outside the Gospel. We stand in the Gospel, not in some other philosophy or vain attempt at spiritualism. “The Gospel in which we stand”
The Gospel by which you are being saved
Some do not understand what we meanby salvation sometimes. Mostly we use it to describe how at that one moment of belief, Christ rescued us from our sin and gave us an eternal hope. That is a part of salvation but not the whole. The moment of conversion is a part of salvation that God calls justification. It is when you are declared righteous by the blood of Christ before God Almighty. There are two other stages of salvation - sanctification and glorification. When Paul says “the Gospel by which you are bing saved,” he is not referring to justification but sanctification. Every Christian is being actively worked on by the Holy Spirit. You are big conformed to the image of Christ, i.e. becoming more like Jesus. According to this passage, one of the main tools that the Holy Spirit uses in your life to make you more like Jesus is the Gospel. We know this to be true as it is what keeps us going in our faith. We focus on the Gospel and we understand the love of Christ. The Gospel compels us to be more like Jesus.
So do we ever get over the Gospel?
Absolutely not. Why? Because we need the Gospel. We need it everyday to stand in it and be sanctified by it. The Gospel is to be active in our lives. Here’s a short video from Conrad Mbewe who gives a beautiful explanation of the Gospel and its continuing effects in the life of the Christian.