The life-changing power of the Gospel
by Ed Arcton
When you tell people about Jesus, you’re sharing a message that changes everything.
The news about Jesus is amazing, powerful stuff. It’s transformed lives across the centuries and is still transforming our world today.
In 1 Thessalonians, Paul says…“For we know, brothers loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not only in word, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction.”
Paul says three things here, doesn’t he?
- The gospel has come with power,
- With the Holy Spirit
- And with deep conviction.
The gospel came with power because the Holy Spirit was at work in the word! And the hearers were deeply convicted, convinced and moved by the gospel because the Holy Spirit was at work IN THEM when they heard the word of God.
I think that makes sense, because after all Jesus said in John 16.8: “And when he [the Holy Spirit] comes, he will convict the world concerning sin…” That’s his job. It’s what he does.
Isn’t the gospel just words?
The gospel comes to those whom God has chosen, not just as a bunch of words. It’s not merely a talk, a conversation or a lecture about some religious ideas. The gospel comes with POWER.
If anyone hears the message of the gospel, and they’re convicted by it, and it moves them to turn away from sin and trust in Jesus – then we’d have to say that the Holy Spirit has been powerfully at work in them.
The gospel IS words – we need to use words, and the word of God, to explain the gospel. But they are powerful words. God-breathed words. Words used powerfully by the Holy Spirit to convince and convict people as they listen.
You can share the powerful gospel too!
If you ever go to a car museum you’ll see a big collection of old cars, rare cars, fast cars, the big cars and the tiny. If you’re into cars, I guess it’d be a pretty interesting place to spend an hour or two.
But we all know, cars weren’t built just to be admired in some giant garage. They were meant to be taken out, filled with petrol, and driven!
And likewise, the gospel isn’t a bunch of religious words and ideas that we get out and admire in church on Sunday, then we put them back on the shelf till next week. The gospel is a message of power, a message used powerfully by the Spirit of God, to convict people of their need for Jesus. The gospel message is an effective message.
The gospel is meant to be spoken BY real people like you and me, TO real people, with REAL power.
Next time you’re tempted to think the Gospel is just a story or a bunch of words, remember it is a powerful, life-transforming truth that continues to change lives and communities around the world.
BY ROB MORTON
Edited by Karina Marlow.
February 10, 2020
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