Clear Concise Gospel presentation?

Discussion in 'Evangelism, Missions and the Persecuted Church' started by RunCALEB, Jan 29, 2014.

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  1. RunCALEB

    RunCALEB Puritan Board Freshman

    Hey guys! Was wondering if you all would give me some feedback. Looking to write up a very clear, very concise Gospel presentation that's wording also defeats common errors presented in false gospels. Check it out, let me know what you think! Once again, I used different words on purpose, and it has to remain very close to this length. Thanks :)

    "God created man to glorify and enjoy Him. However, every individual has disobeyed God and acted outside of His divine law. This causes all to be guilty before Him, with His wrath upon them. BUT, Christ Jesus fully satisfied the wrath of God for and attributes His righteousness to, all who turn from sin and self to Christ, by God’s grace through faith, treasuring Him above all else in word and deed."
     
  2. Hamalas

    Hamalas whippersnapper

    One thing that jumps out to me is the wording you've included about the fall. The way you phrase it makes it seem as though our condemnation comes because we have each as individuals fallen short of God's law. While this is undoubtedly true, it is not the reason that we are condemned. We are condemned for being "in Adam" who sinned against God and, "Brought mankind into an estate of sin and misery". Romans 5:12 comes into play here as does Q. 16-19 of the Westminster Shorter Catechism.

    I would suggest reading through these questions and examining the texts provided to help tighten up the language here. Historic Church Documents at Reformed.org
     
  3. RunCALEB

    RunCALEB Puritan Board Freshman

    I had actually used the language of "in Adam" and "in Christ" earlier in this process, and for the sake of clarity, I ended up changing the wording after listening to a few peoples comments back. The thing is, the way it's worded does not exclude Adam's Federal Headship, rather it is implicit. You could easily say, "every individual has disobeyed God and acted outside of His divine law" through Adam, or, by their union with Adam. We read it, and we know that, but what I'm trying to do is very clearly and concisely get across to a nonbeliever the Gospel's core message. I think even looking at the apostles preaching the Gospel to people, we see that they don't always, if ever, bring up the idea of union with Adam and union with Christ as a dichotomy to the unbelievers. Instead, we see in Acts 13:38-39 and Acts 10:39-43 for example, Paul describing forgiveness of sin through Christ, really in an extremely basic passing manner, yet he makes no mention of Adam or original sin explicitly.
     
  4. Hamalas

    Hamalas whippersnapper

    Perhaps we should take a step back at this point. If we compare Acts 17:22-34 with Acts 13:13-41 (there are many other texts as well) we see that Paul's presentation of the gospel varies when he presents it to the Jews as opposed to the Gentiles. The content of the Gospel is unchanged, but the context is different. With the Jews, Paul knows that they have the testimony of the Old Testament which points forward to Christ and he makes great use of this (following the example of Stephen in Acts 7 who walked his Jewish hearers through the story of redemption and connected this to the gospel of Jesus Christ). With the message to the Gentiles however, much of this material is not explicitly stated. Different contexts (and different levels of knowledge) demanded different presentations of the same gospel.

    Thus, any clear and concise statement of the gospel must be predicated on the situation and circumstance for which it is intended. This leads to my question: what exactly is prompting you to write this brief restatement of the gospel? It might make it easier to helpfully evaluate if we knew what the context for this brief paragraph will be. :)
     
  5. RunCALEB

    RunCALEB Puritan Board Freshman

    Yes, definitely! Those things play in, but as far as the core message that must be understood, I really like Greg Gilbert's books What Is the Gospel? and David Platt's sermon series going through the Threads of the Gospel. It breaks it down into God, Man, Christ, Response, and shows that biblical pattern. I guess my goal in the paragraph is to have a really clear and concise basic presentation of the Gospel as a resource to be used for presenting the Gospel. Of course there's other things that can be added, or things to be articulated, but it's a starting point. Know what I mean?
     
  6. Cymro

    Cymro Puritan Board Junior

    I think you have omitted the substitutionary death of Christ. It could read, BUT, Christ Jesus
    laid down His life on behalf of sinners, and so fully satisfied the wrath etc. Christ crucified being
    the true Gospel.
     
  7. Hamalas

    Hamalas whippersnapper

    If the impulse for this is as a concise reference for yourself (which is what I'm picking up from your response) then I think the doctrinally rich statements in the creeds and confessions would probably be the best place to go. I guess I'm wondering where you get the desire to boil the gospel down to its most succinct form. This seems to be a common desire but I'm not sure why exactly we feel the need to do it. Any brief answer would need to be expounded by the speaker (this is why God sends men to proclaim his word and not just hand people one page tracks before moving on). If you feel compelled to find a short "form" that can serve as a useful guide in evangelism and witness I would simply recommend memorizing and then expounding on Titus 2:11-14:

    Maybe I'm missing the point and if so then I'm glad to stand corrected. I hope this is helpful. :)
     
  8. Edward

    Edward Puritanboard Commissioner

    Does no one else now have this running through their brain?

    "Are you familiar with the four spiritual laws...."
     
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