“Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, descended from David. This is my Gospel, for which I am suffering even to the point of being chained like a criminal. But God’s Word is not chained. Therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they too may obtain salvation that is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory” (2 Timothy 2:8-10).
I wonder if we have this very same perspective, or if we are too far removed (in both time and even belief) from the early church? Are these our priorities? Are these words as central to us as they were to the first century apostolic mission?
As the Apostle writes to his protégé Timothy, the sword that will fulfill his destiny can practically be heard as it is sharpened in the background (Paul, of course, is soon beheaded for his faith). And so as with much of what we see from Paul’s pen, there is a great sense of urgency in what he seeks to communicate in this final letter to his dear friend.
“Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, descended from David. This is my Gospel.”
“This is my Gospel.” Now that’s a significant statement! Is it not?
The word Gospel is utilized 96 times in the New Testament. All but 20 are found in Paul’s letters. 76 times the Apostle Paul pens the word. “Euangelion.” “Good News.” “Gospel.” And each and every time he does, his intention is the same. For there is no other Gospel that is Gospel.
This is my Gospel: “Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, descended from David.”
How do we, how do you, understand the word “Gospel?”
How do we define it?
Is “our Gospel” more?
Is it less?
If it is, then “our gospel” is not “the Gospel.”
Glory to God!