There’s more to the gospel than hell

            The following post is probably not going to be as exciting as my usual articles. My commission as a blogger for Christ is to “preach the word… convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching” (2 Timothy 4:2).  When telling people the gospel I usually focus first on death, hell, and sin, because without it the gospel makes no sense.  But this time I am going to focus on the “positives” of the gospel as well. 

            My text from the Bible for today is Ephesians 2:4-7 “But God, who is rich in mercy because of His great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (for by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly place in Christ Jesus, That in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.”

            This passage is a boring passage to someone who is not a Christian.  By the time they read through it and get to the part that says “exceeding riches of grace in His kindness,” their eyes are probably rolling towards the back of their head and a yawn escapes from their mouth.  That is because they are more interested in getting “exceeding riches” on earth, not in the “ages to come.”  Thus they read through these verses quickly, looking for a part that says that God has a wonderful plan for their life on Earth.  But to a real Christian–someone who has already found himself standing on the brink of hell and was rescued by God–this passage is both powerful and exciting.  It is a reminder to us who are called “saints” that God has not only saved us from a horrible eternity, but that He has prepared something much better for us that is both glorious and pure.  We are looking forward everyday to sitting “together in the heavenly place in Christ Jesus,” waiting to be shown “the exceeding riches of His grace.”  It is hard to explain these emotions to someone who has not been saved from hell.   But today I am mentioning it anyway, so that they will understand that the gospel does more than threaten the unbeliever; it promises rewards for the believer as well. The reason that I as a Christian usually spend little time speaking about this to unbelievers is because knowing that you’re a sinner is the first step to salvation.  But it’s not the only step.  Wanting to spend eternity with the God who saved you and experience His love first hand is an important part of the equation as well.

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