Receiving the Gospel Doesn’t Just Give us Assurance of Eternal Life, it Also Keeps Changing us.
“Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word which I preached to you — unless you believed in vain.” 1 Corinthians 15:1–2
The Good News Keeps Changing Us
Sometimes Christians think about the Gospel, the good news, of Jesus as something that only gives us assurance that we will spend eternity with God in heaven: being “saved.”
But as we see in this passage, the Gospel does much more than that, IF we respond to it well.
Notice what Paul says the Gospel keeps doing in our lives after we become God’s children through the new birth:
- By the Gospel, “we stand.” In other words, the on-going power of the message of Jesus not only saves us from sin, but also gives us the power to be strong. Ephesians 6 tells us to “stand strong in the strength of the Lord” putting on His armor for spiritual battle.
The Gospel gives us the power to stand up to the spiritual attacks the enemy brings against us. It gives us the power to stand up for what is biblical and right in a world that is still under much spiritual darkness and life-stealing actions.
2. We are “being saved” by the Gospel. “”by which, you are being saved.” Salvation is a one time thing and an on-going thing. When we receive Jesus alone as Lord and Savior, we are made new, born again, granted the gift of eternal life. It is a done deal.
We don’t need to keep asking Jesus to forgive us and receive the gift of eternal life. We do it once and it is forever settled.
But salvation also means being made whole, healed, and restored. When we come to Jesus He then begins the restoration process in our souls: our minds, our emotions, sometimes our bodies. In this sense, we “are being saved.”
Again, the Gospel only gives us the assurance of eternal life and heave, it also keeps working in us to keep saving us from sin and Satan’s influence in our souls.
We just need to do a few things for the Gospel to keep saving us.
- We receive it, and keep receiving it. “the gospel, I preached to you, which you received.” The more we say “yes” to God’s word, the more it will save us. James 1 tells us to receive God’s word with humility, and then it saves our souls.
When we consciously study and meditate on God’s word, the more we open our souls, receive it, and say “yes” to it, the more powerfully in will work in us to transform us.
You don’t have to make the Gospel work, it is God’s seed, it carries His power and it will keep “saving you”, liberating you, healing you, and transforming you.
2. “Hold fast to the Word.” The devil’s biggest strategy is always to steal the word of God from our hearts. If he can steal it, then he can easily replace it with words of deception.
So, Paul encourages us to not only receive the Gospel but to then “hold fast” to it. Understand the enemy’s tactics. He will always try to get you to let go of what God says and replace it with what he says.
God’s word will produce His life in us, we just need to receive it, protect it, hold on to it…it will grow and increase the life of Jesus in you.
That’s why Paul said, “I would REMIND you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you….” When we keep reminding ourselves of the message of the Gospel, the word of God, it will grow deep roots in our souls and more and more of the life of Jesus will increase in us.
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