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How often should Christians Hear the Gospel?

21/04/2014

Help me out here. How often should a Christian hear the Gospel? Let me explain…

Some time ago I was speaking to an elderly minister, with almost a lifetime of service to the Lord. He had risen to be the chief administrator of his denomination, and was highly respected by all. He was also a kindly and friendly gentleman, and so when I was asked to provide him with a meal and some space to think between services, I readily agreed. Over the meal I asked him about his long period of ministerial service. I wanted to know, if looking back, he had any regrets? He thought a good while before he answered. Yes. He had one major regret. His denomination had stopped holding ‘gospel meetings’ back in the early 1990s. Every Sabbath evening they had held a service, designed to proclaim the gospel to sinners. They rehearsed all the great gospel themes. The sinfulness of man, the condemnation of man under the law, the perfection of Christ, his atoning death on the cross, his resurrection and ascension, and his second coming… All these great themes were proclaimed and many more.

But someone decided that the gospel was only for ‘unconverted people’ – not for believers, who, they reasoned, didn’t need to be told over and over again that they ‘needed to be saved’ so they had decided, (not all local churches) that the evening service would be a ‘celebration’ instead. Preaching the gospel was replaced with ‘how to’ sermons, and endlessly repeated doctrinally banal songs. The result was that after 10 years of ‘celebrations’ the people had forgotten the basic tenets of the faith, and were easy prey for every huckster selling some cheap religious experience.

So, how often should Christians hear the Gospel? Let’s define some terms before we go any further. By ‘Christian’ I mean someone who has a profession of faith in Christ, who has repented of sin and trusted Christ who died on the Cross to atone for our sins. By ‘Gospel’ I mean the Good News, that while all have sinned and come short of the glory of God, Christ died on the Cross to save us and cleanse us from all our sins, by Grace alone, by Faith alone, in Christ alone, for God’s Glory alone, as revealed in God’s Word alone.

How often should Christians hear the Gospel? How often do we need to hear that our sins are forgiven in Christ? Here’s my list of possibilities…

a) Christians don’t need to hear the Gospel at all.
b) Once on the Lord’s Day, when unconverted people are present.
c) Every Lord’s Day, whether unconverted people are present or not.
d) At every service we should be reminded of the cross if possible.
e) Every day we should hear, if possible, something of the Gospel.
f) Several times every day.

My own opinion is that we should be reminded of the gospel in every message, wherever possible. All our preaching should focus on Christ, and what he has done for us. After all Paul wrote…
1 Corinthians 1:1-2 And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.
2 Corinthians 4:5 For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake.
And each day, we should make sure that at some time in the day, our thoughts return to Calvary, so that we can meditate on the grace of God to sinners.

So, take a second and let me know. Use the survey form below to give your opinion, or use the comments box to add your own opinion.

From → Encouragement

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