As we finish out this second week on the importance of declaring the gospel, I want us to observe one final truth.
Finally, and this should be very obvious by now, there is nothing more precious than the gospel.
Read Acts 20:24
These are the passionate words of Paul. Paul is saying that his life would be one huge waste and very insignificant if he did not testify to the gospel of grace. His burning desire was to finish the course—to complete the task—to reach the finish line—to fulfill his ultimate purpose in life. And what was that purpose?
To testify to the gospel of grace.
What words have we seen so far that define the gospel? It is the message of first importance. It is the power of God. It is the word of truth. It is life itself.
And now Paul calls it the gospel of grace. What is grace?
It is the glorious truth that we deserve all of God’s wrath and condemnation and eternal hell, but that in Christ who died as our sacrifice we receive all of God’s riches, blessings, and eternal life. We cannot earn this grace. It isn’t something that God is obligated to give. Instead, he graciously gives this mercy to us because of His infinite love.
It is truly amazing grace. The gospel is the message of God’s amazing grace toward ill-deserving sinners.
Martyn Lloyd-Jones wrote this, “There is only one thing I know of that crushes me to the ground and humiliates me to dust, and that is to look at the Son of God, and especially contemplate the cross.”
John Stott, wrote this: “Every time we look at the cross Christ seems to be saying, “I am here because of you. It is your sin I am bearing, your curse I am suffering, your debt I am paying, your death I am dying.” Nothing in history or in the universe cuts us down to size like the cross. All of us have inflated views of ourselves, especially in self-righteousness, until we have visited a place called Calvary. It is there, at the foot of the cross, that we shrink to our true size.”
My prayer and I pray that it is yours as well, is that we would be a gospel-centered church that stays focused on the main thing—the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ and that we live in abundance of His amazing grace.
As we finish this week, spend some time meditating on the cross. Ask God to burn in you heart a passion for the gospel. Thank God for the power and truth and life and preciousness of the gospel.
Martyn Lloyd-Jones quoted in Charles Swindoll, So You Want to Be Like Christ? (Nashville: W Publishing Group, 2005), 139.
John Stott, The Message of Galatians (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1968), 179.