Week 3 – The Gospel

I think we’ve all heard the gospel so i would like to focus on some areas of thought that are relatively new to me especially in light of the “story formed life.”

One of the most important things that have struck me in this class is how important it is to share the gospel (to myself) in the context of creation and the fall. Without the story of creation we do not have any sort of idea of what things should have been and what the point to all this is. Without an understanding of the fall we have no true concept of loss, desperation, or need. now we do have our own story but one thing that i am learning is that the story of loss and redemption is so much bigger than us. the more that we come to an understanding of this the more we will understand the gospel, the history of humanity, and , ironically, ourselves as individuals. i think the only story of sin that i was ever really told or understood was a very personal account of how i can look into myself at what i do or can’t do and see how much i need God. the epitome of all this is the “rock bottom” line where everyone meets god at the bottom of a bottle 1 minute before they were planning on committing suicide. while this is important it is only one aspect and a sign of a much greater sense of fallenness. bigger than that, we have the fallenness in our church, our city, our country, and our race (humanity). biblically, these are referred to quite frequently yet it is so counter-cultural to accept responsibilites for other peoples actions that we do not focus on the idea much at all.

the second main idea that i had in regards into believing the gospel is the necessary implications that it brings on ones life. if the gospel can be boiled down to two main points it would probably look something like this:
1. we are fallen
2. we are loved
if i really beleive this about myself than it would only make sense to beleive this about everyone else. this was the problamatic thing that i ran into this week. here are some areas of introspection that i would like to focus on in the weeks to come that all hinge on my true belief of the gospel.

– If i truly believe those two points my natural reaction would be to identify with the fallen around me instead of judge them/us. this is not my natural reaction. in fact, not only is it not natural but i don’t think that i do it much at all.

– the other main thing that struck me was the extent that practicing the gospel should be natural assuming that you actually believe it. if we really found ourselves in a story like the prodigal son, having run so far and been accepted by a father so much, it seems like it would be so easy to celebrate that joy and pass it on to others by extending grace to them. instead i constantly find myself in this battle of the wills of trying to practice things that actually go against what seems natural. this leads me to the action point that i need to take. i would like to study and experience the gospel both academically and emotionally in a way that will actually cause a natural reaction that is visible in my life. i don’t think that this is an easy process but ultimately i think that it is the only option that has the potential for true life change.

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2 thoughts

  1. Hey Ben,
    Thanks for putting together the slide shows and for your comments on the classes you’re taking. You’ve got some classic pictures, there. Good to share in your thoughts on the Great Story too. Thanks for adding us to your list!
    Beth
    and
    Manolo

  2. 1. we are fallen
    2. we are loved

    i like this distillation of the gospel
    you said that in response to this you were better able to identify with sinners and be less judging

    i just wanted to share with you an experience i had this morning that may relate.
    lately i have been praying that God would align my heart to love what he loves and hate what he hates knowing well that my heart naturally does not align itself in this way.
    well last night i had one of those “taxi driver” moments where i looked around my neighborhood and saw nothing but anarchy and depravity. hookers and drug dealers on the street. hobos and hoodlums. the breaking point for me was when some of them started lighting off bottle rockets at 2am
    in the middle of the street.
    honestly for the first time i failed to delight in anarchy and felt an anger and disgust for the disrespect and lawlessness that surrounded me. i was sickened to the point of hatred. and then the whole thing flipped on me and i realized that i belong to this race of degenerates too and am just as desperately in need of a savior.

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