Today church leaders always talk about various methods, programs, and plans of preaching the Gospel, but do they think about what kind of the Gospel they deliver to people. Here, we can bring up an example of a common content used by church believers for telling people the Gospel: “God so loved the world and will give them the eternal life; but because of their sins, people are isolated from God. Therefore, Jesus Christ became the sole salvation prepared by God for forgiving human sins. When you accept Jesus Christ as your Savior, you will get the eternal salvation and have a good relationship with God.” This concise message of the Gospel is from the Bible, and we may easily tell people the basic meaning of God’s salvation; but when we teach people the Bible and do discipleship, we should tell them the whole contents of the biblical truth, especially all teachings from Jesus and the core of the new life in the Lord.
For example, the simplified teaching does not mention of the Lord Jesus’ teaching about the spiritual rebirth, taking up the cross, and bearing fruits in Jesus. We must note that when the Lord Jesus gave His great commission to His disciples for preaching the Gospel to the world, He warned them, “teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” (Matthew 28:20) Therefore, we must proclaim all teachings of the Lord Jesus (including all acts he witnessed), and not only to preach, but also command believers to obey all teachings given by the Lord Jesus
If we simplify the Bible into several elements or a few of principles or simple doctrine, we do not teach the 100% of the Gospel, or we may call the 100% of the Gospel as a pure and whole set of the Gospel, which means that all teachings are directly from God, not with human make-up. So, if we simplified the Word of God and teach people with the approaches and the contents for pleasing human desires, it is difficult for us to guide believers to go through a truly regeneration in the Lord Jesus. It can be said that today churches face no revivals and many problems, because preachers do not proclaim all the teachings of the Lord Jesus; but instead, they apply the human made religious messages to please people; and as a result, they made many believers without the new life, or call them as false Christians. When the Lord Jesus comes to judge the world, there must be many people shouting, “Lord, Lord,” but the Lord Jesus will refuse to accept them and shut the door of the Kingdom of Heaven. (Please read Matthew 7:21-23).
Maybe you will say, we first used this simplified Gospel to lead people to believe Jesus, and then guide them to study the Bible in details. However, you may find that after people received the doctrine with challenge to their lives, it is difficult for them to be willing to take up the cross for following Jesus according to His example. Thus, people cannot renew their lives if there is no the works of the Holy Spirit upon them; and the Holy Spirit works with the truth of the Bible. If we, from the very beginning, do not lead people to build their faith on the rock of the truth, but build their religious beliefs on the sand, it is very hard for you to change the life of false Christians. Because they cannot change their lives with a religious message unless the truth of the Bible breaks their stubborn hearts and then they are willing to do a thoroughly repentance. Here, besides a simplified teaching of the Bible, the religious messages also include social “Gospel”, cultural “Gospel”, and secular “Gospel”.
In general, if you are a preacher, you must fear of God and must learn from Apostle Paul, not please people but only seek God’s joy, and preach a pure and whole set of the Gospel. Because all of us will have to face the judge of the Lord Jesus, and He will see if we are good and faithful servants or not.
- Moses Sun wrote this article. The first edition in Chinese was published on April 2, 2006. The second edition in Chinese was published on October 10, 2007. The third edition in Chinese was published on August 1, 2019. The edition of translation was published on October 10, 2007 and renewed on August 1, 2019.
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