Good day to you. I have a hard question to ask. But before I do I want to say thank you for your heartfelt and consistent spiritual investment in your flock. You rock. You rock the flock. My prayer is that you will be blessed as a result of all you do. On behalf of all your congregation thank you so much.
Okay, as for my tough question here it goes (gird yourself because this could hurt a bit), why don't you give the gospel in every sermon every week?
I know. I know. You have a lot of stuff to get through in your Sunday morning service. But why couldn't you cut a song, trim the announcements or skip that goofy illustration (you know which one I'm talking about)? It's the gospel for crying out loud. How could you preach a sermon without sharing the message of the free grace offered to us through the costly death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ?
To preach a sermon without giving the gospel is like telling a joke without giving the punchline, baking a pizza without any cheeze or drinking decaffeinated coffee...pointless.
There is no theological truth you will ever preach that is deeper than the gospel.
There is no action point you can give that is more practical than the gospel.
There is no story you could tell that is more dramatic than the gospel.
I could guilt trip you out (it may be someone's last chance to hear the gospel before they die, etc) but I'd rather grace-trip you out. So let me give that a try.
The gospel is the best news in the world. We have been saved from hell (later) and hopelessness (now) through the shed blood of Jesus Christ on our behalf. We should be so stinkin' excited about that reality that we can't help but shout it from the mountaintops every single day and tie it into our sermons every single Sunday.
If you won the lottery you'd tell somebody. If you found the cure to cancer you'd tell everybody. This is way better than both put together and multiplied by a zillion!
The disciples couldn't stop giving it in every sermon. Check out these verses in Acts 4:18-20, "Then they called them in again and commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John replied, 'Which is right in Godâ€™s eyes: to listen to you, or to him? You be the judges! As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.'â€
The disciples couldn't help bringing it up, not just in every sermon, but every conversation between every sermon. The Sanhedrin couldn't threaten it out of them or beat it out of them...
"...when they had called for the apostles and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. So they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His name. And daily in the temple, and in every house, they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ." Acts 5:40-42
Let us be like the disciples. Let us preach the gospel so much and so often that even the most ardent and obstinate church council couldn't threaten it out of us if they tried.
When asked what his style of preaching was Spurgeon responded, "I take my text and make a beeline for the cross." May we do the same.
Thanks again for all you do. You are making a difference. And giving the gospel weekly will help you to make even more of one.
All for THE Cause,