July 31, 2009
WHERE DID the GOSPEL GO? by Peter Hansen
A Desperate World in Need of the Pure Gospel!
Billions of people are living in poverty around the world. About 2.8 billion people are living on less than two dollars a day. Millions are dying from starvation and diseases in the Third World. The global financial crisis has caused millions to lose their home and the world has probably just seen the beginning of a major global crisis that not even the financial experts could have foretold. The threat of nuclear war is hanging in the air and the most powerful nations of the globe are fighting for the last reserves of oil.
While some families can’t even afford a single meal on the table each day, others are addicted to drugs, gambling and alcohol. Millions in the west are so mentally depressed that they try to escape this world of loneliness in alcohol, drugs, perversions and suicide. The world is screaming for help and solutions for a messed up society that has nothing to offer but endless talk shows and online entertainment.
People are seriously desperate for finding a deeper meaning, hope and inner peace. This world seems to have everything to offer, but in reality is more out of control morally and spiritually than ever. I can boldly say that this world needs the full gospel message of Jesus Christ. Not another sermon or conference about self happiness, but the pure full gospel of salvation. That is the one and only thing that can bring peace to the mind and restore the soul.
But how sad it is that the preaching of the full gospel has been downgraded to some cultural light gospel show with fancy stage performance and blinking lights! Where are the full gospel preachers who dare to stand up for the truth, who dare to preach salvation, hope, hell, holiness and grace. Where are those who proclaim that Jesus Christ is the only way to heaven?
The problem is that millions of people have been deceived and blinded with a feel good gospel, a light lukewarm message that only talks about happiness, prosperity, self-development and “me, me and me” instead of “Him, Him and Him!”
Where did the gospel go?
Is today’s modern church really afraid of teaching the full living gospel? Is it afraid of being politically incorrect and offending the masses? Many churches are on a very dangerous path. A path that will only lead to possible destruction. Let me point out, that if there is no gospel message of sin, grace, repentance and salvation there is zero!
And while thousands of churches are playing “seeker sensitive churches” and being politically correct, millions of non-believers are screaming for spiritual truth that can give them real hope and reality based on the word of God. The truth of the gospel will set them free, but if there is no one preaching the truth of the gospel, many will go to hell, believing in a different gospel (2 Corinthians 11:3-4) (Galatians 1:6-7) . That is the hard facts. A very good place to read and study what Jesus is saying is in Matthew chapter 24. Jesus mentions here in chapter 24 that many will be deceived by false prophets and teachers.
It is so easy for self-proclaimed prophets to make up weird crazy doctrines and get thousands of followers, because in many churches there is a great lack of Christian discipleship based on the word of God. The focus on Jesus and his teaching and discipleship has been replaced with “feel-good teachings” that totally lacks the important teachings about repentance, sin, hell, grace and holiness.
On a five week mission trip to Ethiopia recently I was scheduled to speak in different churches. In my sermon preparation I felt a deep conviction to preach and focus more on the gospel that Jesus taught and His life, more than I had ever done before. And the pastors and local evangelists were amazed and almost shocked by the clear gospel teaching, because they were not used to that!
We have to remember that the gospel is what sets us free. We need to bring the full gospel back in our churches, mission fields and to a desperate seeking world. There is only one hope and that is Jesus Christ. We have to renew our passion for being in the presence of Jesus. We must take up our cross and lay down our lives and follow Christ and be filled with the Holy Spirit. We must renew our minds daily in God’s presence. We must study the life of Jesus and the Word of God and let it become part of us, inside out.
The living word of God will change your life and you will see its powerful effects, and not only will you be empowered by his Word, the world around you will experience the saving and healing power of Jesus Christ. Make the gospel the focus of your life and ministry and tell others as well.