Sometimes we don't think about the way we share the gospel. Other times we have not given much thought over it, in that we know the exact words we want to say.
Today, this is a short piece about thinking about the way we share the gospel.
Some things to think about
1. Does your gospel mention the resurrection?
Many gospel outlines make a big deal (and rightfully so) of Christ's death and what it means. Of course, there is a lot going on at the cross, and it is something we need to be careful to understand, as it is at the very centre of our faith
2. Does it explain the body of Christ?
The Christian community is a wonderful place. But some gospel outlines also make it seem like being a Christian is a personal choice between you and God and that is it. Being a Christian, living faithfully to God's word is to it in community. Just look at the New Testament. Many of Paul's letters were written to a church, Jesus made sure that the disciples were never alone. To be a Christian mean to belong to the body
3. Does your gospel outline talk about eternal hope?
Some Gospel outlines do this, saying that we will live in heaven. Be careful, when you read the later parts of the new testament, Jesus is renewing the whole earth! All of creation will be renewed.
Does your gospel mention evil in 2 ways, or just one?
One of the big ideas of sin, is that we are both agents of evil (the bad things we do, and the good things we don't do) but also there is evil and sin that is done to us (we could be victims of evil). Evil, or sometimes Sin, is purely understood as the bad things we do. Where as there are many times were people are victims of sin, and this part of the gospel still needs to be very much understood today
What did Jesus actually do on the cross?
Yes, he died in our place, but he also defeated sin and death. He also was an amazing example and he is bringing in a new world.
Sometimes when we say that you can be friends with God, just repent and believe... people will say 'Thank you. That's great' When really it is much more than that.
Knowing God, and the work he did for us through Jesus should change our life. Our churches need to be communities who are living out this hope, not only in their teaching but in the way they relate to each other as well.
Stephen Urmston is based in Melbourne and is completing a Masters of Divinity at Ridley College. He is currently employed as an associate Children's and Family minister.
Stephen Urmston's previous articles may be viewed at http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/stephen-urmston.html