Posted by Unknown |

This is my "theological thinking", don't bother reading it if you think it'll bore you.

If I was in MT I would put a title on this post. Kinda like this:

The Centrality of the Gospel

I watched Benny Hinn this morning. I was going to have my quiet time but I got distracted by the Benny videos on the web. Sometimes I like to have a little bit of a look. I guess I'm not a big fan of Benny but Mum was telling last night about a friend of hers who wanted to send money into the show so that a person would pray for them. That made me think, "This sounds a little dodgy, I should have a look" and I think I found what she was talking about, and I'd say it's dodgy. But what I noticed on the show is that it's all about healing. They spend the whole show telling people they will be healed and people saying they've been healed. Whenever that happens Benny says something like "All the glory to you Lord. We know it's only by the power of Jesus that we can be healed."

I was watching this, thinking, "Yeah, that's good. The glory of any healing should go to God and not Benny" and I was pleased with that. But the problem is that the show is all about healing. It's all about how God is going to work now, how God will heal you now, how God will bless your finances now. They sang about Jesus being beautiful. Why will Jesus be beautiful? Because He's about to heal people, He's about to do mighty works.

What was not mentioned in the show (and this is not to say it's indicative of every show) was the Gospel. The glory goes to God when there is a healing, and rightly so, but the glory should already go to God. The greatest miracle that could be seen in any Benny Hinn crusade is the thousands of believers who have been set free by the death of Jesus. The greatest miracle that has ever happened is Jesus' salvation of the world, and defeat of evil through His death and resurrection. And this is what should always be celebrated. We give glory to God because of who He is. We give glory to God because of what He does. And we can always give glory to God because of what Jesus has done.

Throughout the Bible there can be seen a centrality of the Gospel. The Old Testament looks forward to the coming of Jesus or as it is put "The Day of the Lord". Through the New Testament it all looks either towards the cross, or back to the cross and forward to the day of Christ’s return. There is a definite centrality of the Gospel. Throughout Acts there are many miracles done and they all lead to opportunities for the spread of the Gospel. In the epistles there is a centrality of the Gospel. Everything is centered upon the Gospel. The reason why Christians are who they are is because of the redeeming work of Jesus, achieved through His death and resurrection.

When you are a Christian then the Gospel is central to who you are. When you have been saved by Jesus your identity is in Him. There is no-where else where salvation is found. The reason why we want to tell other people about Christ is because Gospel is central to the salvation of the world. If there is no other way to the Father then it is imperative that Christ is preached.

And so I'm thinking, is the Gospel central to my life? Where does my hope come from? I know it is in the Lord. I know that I rely on Jesus. But is my hope always based upon the Gospel? Am I knowingly transformed by the fact that I've been saved by Christ? Not always. God doesn't save me through His healing miracles. God doesn't save me by making me happy. God doesn't save me by answering all my prayers. God doesn't save me by helping me make good films. God doesn't save me by helping me run a good youth group. God saves me only by the death and resurrection of Jesus. The things that God does for me, aside from saving me, only find significance in the Gospel. Nothing means anything without a relationship with God made possible through Christ. It is all meaningless unless I am saved by Christ. How easy is it for me to put my hope elsewhere? How easy is it for me to forget that I am who I am because of what Jesus has done for me?

My identity is only in Jesus. My life is only in Christ. I am who I am because God has saved me.

The salvation of the world can only be found in Jesus. The only way there can be any ultimate meaning in this world is through God's saving power. The only way the world can move from death to life is through the blood of Jesus.

And that is why I believe in the centrality of the Gospel.