The gospel has just one purpose which is in line with the purpose of Jesus on earth. The gospel isn’t another tool for a wealthy life, so many business writings can do very well in that. The gospel isn’t about marriage and relationships, a lot of relationship books and coaches will do well in that regard.
While Jesus taught us on living in peace with one another, that wasn’t the central message of the gospel. Jesus was not tolerant, he was not diplomatic, he was not calm about his message! He spoke and acted with so much boldness and authority.
Although the teachings of the gospel touch every aspect of life in one way or another, the gospel has a central message and a central purpose. The message of the gospel is Christ Jesus who is the express image of the invisible God. The Bible says in Hebrews 1:3 NIV
“The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven”
Do you see that? Jesus is the explanation of God, a complete and comprehensive analysis of God. Of all we read in the Old Testament, of all our personal experiences has been, Jesus is the summation of who God is, the final revelation of who God is as long as this earth is concerned.
The words of Jesus is what sustains all things! When Jesus said “forgive them for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34) forgiveness was forever granted, sealed with the pronouncement of Jesus in John 19:30 “it is finished”. If there is more to add to what Jesus did, then the entire mission of Jesus was a waste and Jesus would be a fraudster. However, we know that indeed it was finished.
Where we read in Hebrews, we see that Jesus has provided purification of our sins, he isn’t constantly providing purifications, he isn’t promising to provide purification if we can stay long enough or if we can try to live a perfect life. The Bible says
“For it is by God’s grace that you have been saved through faith. It is not the result of your own efforts, but God’s gift, so that no one can boast about it.” – Ephesians 2:8-9 GNB
It has got nothing to do with our efforts. Faith is simply the channel through which we receive what Jesus already made available for us. We’ve got no reason to boast about our efforts, we’ve got no reason to boast about our moral soundness. Jesus purified us by his own word and brought us to God’s manifest presence by the reason of us being in Him. The Bible says
“In our union with Christ Jesus he raised us up with him to rule with him in the heavenly world.” – Ephesians 2:6 GNB
We have been united with God in such a way that words may not fully explain and the mind may not fully grasp. We are in Christ and Christ is in us. On earth, Christ by the Holy Spirit works through us and in the heavenly places we are in Christ as he beams a perfect representation of us.
This is what the gospel is about, this is the purpose of the gospel. To understand the purpose of the gospel, we need to understand what the mission of Jesus was all about. Jesus said
“…I have come in order that you might have life — life in all its fullness.” – John 10:10 GNB
Jesus didn’t come to steal, kill or destroy. He simply came to make life available to those who would receive it. This isn’t just mere life but the fullness of it, a life that has no end. John 3:16 calls it “Zoe”, the God-life! This is what Jesus came to do. Jesus said:
“What gives life is God’s Spirit; human power is of no use at all. The words I have spoken to you bring God’s life-giving Spirit.” – John 6:63 GNB
The fullness of life that Jesus gives comes by the Spirit of God and it comes into our own Spirit. It is not a fleshy life, it is not the timed life we live on earth. The words of Jesus brings God’s life-giving Spirit into reality! Does Jesus still speak to us today? Of course, yes! Jesus speaks to us by the Holy Spirit, we already have God’s life-giving Spirit but the word always brings us into the consciousness of that Spirit, it stirs the power within us and causes us to manifest it!
“When, however, the Spirit comes, who reveals the truth about God, he will lead you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own authority, but he will speak of what he hears, and will tell you of things to come. He will give me glory, because he will take what I say and tell it to you.” – John 16:13-14 GNB
The Holy Spirit is the revealer of truth, He is God’s way of being in us and making his word come alive in us. He is how Jesus speaks to us today and he doesn’t say what is contradictory to the written word of God.
Jesus didn’t come with condemnation, he didn’t come shouting “hell await all you sinners”. Jesus was always against the Pharisees for being a stumbling block to many people, he condemned their misrepresentation of God but Jesus never condemned anyone by the reason of what they couldn’t do right. Concerning himself, Jesus said
“For God did not send his Son into the world to be its judge, but to be its saviour.” – John 3:17 GNB
Condemnation was not part of Jesus mission on earth and we have been sent to the rest of the world on the basis of what Jesus did, he is our model and our message. In the gospel, there is no condemnation, there is reconciliation! The ministry we have been called into isn’t that which tells people how to dress, how to walk and how to eat. We were never called to police the life of others. We were called into the very purpose of Jesus, to give life to others by God’s life-giving Spirit that is in us. The Bible says
“For the gospel reveals how God puts people right with himself: it is through faith from beginning to end. As the scripture says, “The person who is put right with God through faith shall live.” – Romans 1:17 GNB
The Gospel reveals only one thing; God who puts people right with himself. We may have read many things in the Old Testament, we may have had many experiences and felt God was a certain way but now Jesus has shown us the character of God. This is the same God who said
“Do you think I enjoy seeing an evil person die?” asks the Sovereign LORD . “No, I would rather see him repent and live.” – Ezekiel 18:23 GNB
God takes no delight in the destruction of sinners and he has made a way that we can be righteous not based on our efforts. Jesus is the way he made! When we call God a waymaker, this is what we are saying! Our righteousness is based on the righteousness of Jesus and not our own self-righteousness which is like a filthy rag before God.
This is what Jesus came to do and this is the purpose of the gospel. Jesus births in us by the Holy Spirit, the ability to walk in love and righteousness, the ability to live in peace and the ability to express the power of God!