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 Why I Reject the Contemporary 'It's All About Me' Gospel by Michael Brown

The New Testament gospel starts with God and tells us what we must do to please Him. The contemporary gospel starts with us and tells us what God can do to please us.

No wonder we are in such spiritual confusion and moral malaise.

When Paul wrote to the Romans, he wanted to be sure they understood the true gospel, and after declaring the gospel as the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes (Rom. 1:16), the first major subject he addressed was the wrath of God.

That’s right. The wrath of God. Today, we dare not even speak about it.

But Paul knew better, stating, “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth” (v. 18, ESV).

And he continued writing about this same subject for 14 verses.

What? He didn’t start with a message about God’s love? He didn’t start with a sweet sermon about how the Lord wants each of us to be happy and fulfilled? He didn’t go out of his way to make sure that his plain speech didn’t offend his hearers or hurt their feelings?

It is true that he told the Roman believers they were loved by God (v. 7), and he certainly exalted Jesus right from the start (vv. 3-4).

But he hardly preached some sappy, sentimental, feel-good message. To the contrary, he proclaimed that God’s wrath against sinners was clearly revealed, that human beings had no excuse and that all of us, Jew and Gentile alike, were guilty in His sight and in desperate need of His mercy. In fact, these were the main themes of the first three chapters of the book.

Do we think we know better than Paul? Do we have a greater revelation of grace than he did? Do we understand the gospel more than Paul understood it?

After teaching on justification by faith (Rom. 4-5), he then moved on to the subject of our victory over sin, making statements like this:

“We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. For one who has died has been set free from sin" (Rom. 6:6-7).

“So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus. Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions” (vv. 11-12).

“But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness” (vv. 17-18).

Yes, we find true liberty by being “slaves of righteousness.” (Note also that Paul described himself as a “slave” of Jesus the Messiah—using the identical Greek word—in Rom 1:1.)

In that same spirit, Paul wrote, “So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live” (Rom 8:12-13). We are spiritual debtors!

I could cite similar quotes from almost all of Paul’s letters, not to mention those of Peter, Jacob (James), John, Judah (Jude) and Hebrews, all with the same message: Because we have been saved by the Lord Jesus, we are no longer our own and we do not have the right to live for ourselves. Rather, we have a lifelong debt to Him, and it is our joyful privilege to fulfill that debt, since living for Him is the only way to experience real life, which is eternal life.

Of course, Paul would be the first to tell us of the glories of God’s grace, of the peace and joy we experience in His presence, of the extraordinary nature of His love, of the power of the Spirit who lives in us and of the sacred standing we have as His sons and daughters. Yes, yes and yes! (Read Paul’s words in Romans 5:1-11 or 8:14-39 to sample two wonderful passages just found in this letter.)

But Paul started with God, not with man (after all, He is the Creator, and we are the creation), and he didn’t water down the message to make it more palatable to rebellious sinners. And he didn’t mince words when it came to detailing the nature of our sins, describing lost people as being “filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless” (Rom 1:29-31).

He didn’t describe nonbelievers as morally challenged, dysfunctional and disoriented but rather as disobedient.

And that’s why we need a Savior—not someone who would look the other way and wink at our sins (which would not have done us any real good) but someone who would take our sin on His own shoulders, dying for us that we might live. What a Savior!

Isn’t it high time that we get back to a New Testament gospel message—the real gospel—rather than the contemporary version, which not only dishonors God but also does a disservice to people, ultimately hurting those we want to help?

Isn’t it time?

from: http://www.charismanews.com/opinion/in-the-line-of-fire/43235-why-i-reject-the-contemporary-it-s-all-about-me-gospel


_________________
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon

 2014/3/24 18:49Profile









 Re: Why I Reject the Contemporary 'It's All About Me' Gospel by Michae

it is time....but each of us, in our way, HAS to walk into that Reality....no more sugar coating, no more excuses.

the way I see it, we need MORE dead to self, dead to flesh, sold out to Jesus prayer warriors.

and if I may, we should submit ourselves to fearless self examination, so that we can approach the Throne, to ask what should be asked for ......Revival, personal, regional, nation and God willing Global.

"bend the Church, save the world" Evan Roberts

 2014/3/24 20:36
AbideinHim
Member



Joined: 2006/11/26
Posts: 3464
Louisiana

 Re:

The contemporary gospel is man centered
and the New Testament gospel is Christ
centered.

Mike


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Mike

 2014/3/25 6:03Profile
TMK
Member



Joined: 2012/2/8
Posts: 5355
NC, USA

 Re:

Another angle to look at it;

"For whose sake did Christ die?"


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Todd

 2014/3/25 6:16Profile
ZekeO
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Joined: 2004/7/4
Posts: 1014
Pietermaritzburg, South Africa

 Re: Why I Reject the Contemporary 'It's All About Me' Gospel by Michae

American Christianity is odd, respected voices in the church tell the church and the world so many things that they are against but cannot seem to agree on and effectively model, what they are for.


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Zeke Oosthuis

 2014/3/25 8:03Profile
dolfan
Member



Joined: 2011/8/23
Posts: 1632
Alabama

 Re:

What any and all of us ought to be "for" is whole love to and obedience of Jesus to the glory of God the Father, to put it into one sentence.

It is, indeed, a tragic truth that American Christians rhetorically agree on opposing same sex marriage, but if asked to explain why our answers diverge from biblically clear ones to vaguely uncertain ones to completely made up ones. It is because we are eager to SAY we know what we believe, but we are unwilling, as a group, to SEEK and STUDY the truth before the face of God in prayerful agonizing and travail at our sin. We are proud. We are not broken nor contrite.

But, then again, maybe not. Here is why I say that. American Christians are not a group. We are not united under any banner of American, nor should we be. So, to say that American Christians are this or that really isn't saying anything. In America, as in S. Africa, as in China, as in Egypt, as in everywhere Christianity exists in truth, people are divided. The adversary is adept at sowing tares and creating confusion and obscuring a clear view of the truth. False disciples and false teachers and people whose love is cold and who love false teaching are successful tactical weapons in the enemy's hands. And we ought to expect it since they serve their father of lies while pretending to serve God.

So, it seems to me, at least, that what looks to be fractured church is really a soft spot in the structure of the enemy. By their fruit, Jesus said, you will know them. We can spot false teaching, false voices, false teachers, false witness, by examining the Truth, which is Jesus Christ, and then watching the words and actions of those who name Him. When "Christians" speak out in favor of, for example, homosexuality or acknowledge homosexuality as in any way a legitimate, acceptable way to live, we know the Truth (Jesus) and we know what Truth says about homosexuality and about all sinful indulgence. So, we can rightly set about to prayerfully distinguish and vocalize the true from the false. That is not a weakness but is a Holy Spirit led strength.


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Tim

 2014/3/25 8:40Profile
MaryJane
Member



Joined: 2006/7/31
Posts: 3057


 Re:

by HezWelling on 2014/3/24 17:36:15

it is time....but each of us, in our way, HAS to walk into that Reality....no more sugar coating, no more excuses.

the way I see it, we need MORE dead to self, dead to flesh, sold out to Jesus prayer warriors.

and if I may, we should submit ourselves to fearless self examination, so that we can approach the Throne, to ask what should be asked for ......Revival, personal, regional, nation and God willing Global.

"bend the Church, save the world" Evan Rober
_________________

Greetings Neil

When I read what you wrote here I thought yes and amen! You are so right we do need more dead to self, dead to the flesh, sold out to JESUS prayer warriors.

Self examination is not a bad thing. Praying and asking GOD to open my eyes to the things in my life and in my heart that are a hindrance to my walk with HIM is a very good thing.

God bless
maryjane

 2014/3/25 18:42Profile





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