The title of this post has been lodged in my head since 1983. It’s the start of the lyrics to the Pink Floyd song The Hero’s Return. The question is essentially the same as one(s) which my co-blogger Tim raised in a comment on another thread.
I would like to know with what urgency do you go about preaching the Gospel of Grace? Is the Gospel the most important truth to you as a Christian? or is being a Christ[ian] merely like being a member of the ‘Rightest’ philosophy/book club?
What[‘s] more….according to your teaching of annihilation… the atheists are right. ie when you die…you die! *That is what they expect* thus what you call Gods judgement is nothing more than what the atheists already expect. Ie it equates to *no judgement* at all.
Me I expect to be judged by the very words of the King James Bible.
For me I can barely sleep at night with concern for the Importance of evangelizing the lost for Christ.
Question: Would you Die for the sake of the Gospel?
According to Wikipedia, the Gospel
is the message of Jesus, the Christ or Messiah—God’s ruler promised by the Scriptures—specifically, the coming Kingdom of God, his death on the cross and resurrection to restore people’s relationship with God, the descent of the Holy Spirit on believers as the helper, the resulting promise and hope of being saved for any who believe and follow Jesus, and through this, a healing of the brokenness of the entire created universe.
But the Gospel is not just a message, it’s a call to action. For me, what’s most important in the Gospel are not its truths but its imperatives.
One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
“The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” (NIV)
There’s a war going on between the forces of good and the forces of evil. (Hadn’t you heard?) Life is the battleground. To become a Christian is to enlist and become a soldier in God’s army.
The first commandment is a call to pledge your allegiance to God.
The second commandment is the battle plan. The details are sometimes a bit sketchy. Which is why it helps to pray
Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done … (KJV)
Tim is right that atheists expect to die. After decades of atheism I’ve grown used to the idea of personal annihilation. The hope and promise of eternal life played no part in my conversion to Christianity. Partly for this reason, saving souls seems somehow of secondary significance to me. Of course, an army needs recruits, but it also needs specialists. Some will specialise in recruitment, but we all have different callings.
That’s what I think it’s all about. I’ll add that my views on the matter are subject to change. Of course, the question which is the title of this post wasn’t addressed to me, it was addressed to Jesus. He has the answers (here, here, here and here), and we should defer to Him accordingly.
Would I die for the sake of the Gospel? It’s a bit late to ask that now, I already enlisted!