In my opinion, throughout my life, I have had to see how in my environment, the gospel of Christ has been misunderstood.
I myself have misunderstood it in the past.
Nowadays, I consider myself to have a broader and more mature overall perspective.
So I dare to write these lines.
As I continue to study the letter to the Romans, today I came to a bible verse that made me reflect on the real essence of the gospel.
I would like to share these thoughts with those who read my blog.
As usual, I invite you to start with a bible text:
(…) the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and receives human approval.
Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification.
Today’s study text has a fairly broad context.
The text is given to us as an exhortation to keep in perspective what is really important in the gospel.
It is written in the midst of several controversies that the early church had over secondary issues related to food and Jewish rites and feasts.
In the midst of an atmosphere of disagreements.
For them, it was becoming usual to judge those who held a different position.
In that text and context, I think perhaps the most powerful idea is Paul’s approach to what is really important, as opposed to what is not.
Many times we want to burden the gospel with things that are more our ideas than the essence of what the gospel really is.
In this way, we end up forming a gospel in our likeness.
Things like external appearance, food.
More recently, controversies over whether Jesus’ name is Yeshua; the exact words to use in baptism, musical instruments, cinema, the use of social media, etc.
There are many issues that are currently being discussed in Christianity, and I think it is a good thing that there is room for diversity of opinion.
However, when we let the important stop being important; and we make that which is not primordial become the most relevant, we have lost the focus of what the gospel really is.
In chapter fourteen of the letter to the Romans, the apostle reminds us that love, justice, peace, joy, mutual edification are all essential pillars of faith.
In my opinion, a gospel that deals with external things rather than those of the heart is not the gospel of Christ.
From my perspective, a gospel that burdens us with works without teaching us freedom in grace is not the gospel of Christ.
A gospel that prioritizes forms over worrying about developing an intimate relationship of love with the Father through Jesus is not the gospel of Christ.
The real essence of the gospel is love for God and our neighbor.
Seeking to develop a compassionate, empathetic, and character of integrity with the help of the Holy Spirit.
Beyond the arbitrary adherence to a series of rules, it is the transformation of the being from within.
The healing of the soul.
A process that without God we cannot carry out.
A process that inevitably ends up transforming the inside and the outside.
A process that leads us to the development of our full potential, leads us to the stature of Christ.
I hope these words are a blessing to your life.
Have you lost sight of the essence of the gospel? What is the circumstance you are going through? Let us know in the comments.
If you need help, a helping hand or an ear to listen to you. If you just want to chat write me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org, it will be my privilege to be in touch.
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Blessings and a hug.