When it comes to discipling our kids, we need to know exactly what we are disciplining them toward. We are showing them what it means to place their faith, hope, and trust in the Lord Jesus. We are teaching them what it means to have a relationship with Christ, accepting his free gift of salvation through his finished work on the cross. We are imploring them to do so now, for their eternal security and also for their commission of making disciples of all the nations.
To do that, we must know the story. We must know the gospel and wholeheartedly believe it, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes (Romans 1:16).
Mark Dever defines the gospel as: “The good news about what Jesus has done to reconcile sinners to God.”
Based upon this definition by Dever, there are several things that we must consider to fully comprehend the totality of what the gospel is:
- There is only one God, who is holy, and made us from his image to know him and love him.
- However, we sinned and cut ourselves off from him.
- In his great love for us—his creation, created in his image—God sent his Son, Jesus, to come as king and rescue his people from their sin.
- Jesus established his kingdom that would not be shaken by acting as both mediating priest and priestly sacrifice. Jesus lived the life we could not live, and died the death we deserved to die to fulfill the plans of the Father.
- Jesus not only died but was resurrected showing that God had accepted his sacrifice and that God’s wrath against us had been exhausted.
- Jesus now calls us to repent of our sins and trust in him for the forgiveness of our sins.
- If we do repent of our sins and trust in Christ alone for salvation, he will freely grant us eternal life, and we are born into a new life with God.
- With this new life we are now free to live for the advancement of his kingdom to the ends of the earth for the glory and renown of his name among the nations of the world.
Notice what the gospel is not. The gospel is not a self-help mantra, self-positioning idea, anything we can do on our own, a me-first approach, or a my-thought, my position, or my-anything. The true gospel revolves completely around Jesus and his all-sufficient work on the cross and resurrection from the grave.
“The gospel is not law, demanding that we pay our own way. The gospel is a welcome announcement, declaring Jesus paid it all.”Ray Ortlund
Jesus has paid it all.
Have you accepted his free gift of salvation? Have you trusted Christ for the forgiveness of your sins? Have you placed your faith in the One who came to redeem the world, and did so?