Titus 3:3–7 gives us what I call the gospel in a nutshell. In these five verses, we find some glorious gospel declarations that tell us what God has done for us in Christ and how we can be assured of his love for us. This passage succinctly summarizes your identity in the Trinity. Paul writes: “For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another. But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
I want to encourage you with seven gospel declarations that emerge directly from this passage of Scripture that I pray you can use to saturate your heart and soul with the good news of God’s love for you in Christ. These declarations will help strengthen you in your identity.
Gospel declaration #1: The gospel tells me of my former identity as an enslaved sinner before trusting Christ. Paul reminds us that we were once foolish, disobedient, enslaved to passions and pleasures, and engulfed in our sin. In other words, that is not our identity anymore. The gospel tells me that I have a new identity. Praise you, Jesus, that you have taken me out of the kingdom of darkness and brought me into the kingdom of light.
Gospel declaration #2: The gospel tells me that God’s awesome mercy and love have come to me personally through Jesus Christ. I’m not the source of salvation. Salvation starts in the heart of God for lost sinners, and he chooses to shower us with goodness, lovingkindness, and mercy through sending Jesus.
Gospel declaration #3: The gospel tells me that I can in no way contribute to my salvation since God saved me by His grace alone. How do you preach this to yourself? You always remind yourself that God is sovereign in your salvation and that you can’t do any good work to make God love you more or love you less. As a believer God loves you perfectly—on your best day when you’re doing everything great for Jesus and on your worst day when you fail miserably, God’s love for you is constant. It doesn’t change based upon your performance one way or the other.
Gospel declaration #4: The gospel tells me that I have been born again as a new creation in Christ. Remind yourself daily that God has washed you. God has regenerated your heart. God has caused you to be born again. You are a new creation in Christ
Gospel declaration #5: The gospel tells me that God has richly given me the indwelling Holy Spirit. We have the Holy Spirit living inside of us as the very presence of Christ. He empowers me to obey Jesus and promises to conform me to the image of God’s Son.
Gospel declaration #6: The gospel tells me that God accepts me, and I have a clean record before him. That’s what it means for God to justify you by his grace. God declares us as righteous. He wipes our record clean and gives us the record of Christ. We stand not guilty, clothed in Christ’s righteousness and not our own, and God accepts us on the basis of Christ, not our performance.
Gospel declaration #7: The gospel tells me that I have the hope of eternal life. Remind yourself daily that this is not your real home. You have a home in heaven. You will one day see Christ face to face. He has an inheritance waiting for you. He holds you in his grip and will never let you go. He will ensure that you make it to heaven. Allow the power of the gospel to affect your thinking, your affections, and your actions as you celebrate God’s amazing grace for sinners in his Son Jesus Christ.