“The Whole Gospel and the Human Condition”
The Christian Gospel is a distinctive and life-changing message that encompasses the whole life, the reality of human actions and thought, and pervades all life situations. It grieves me when some contemporary Evangelical leaders and Christian ministers deceptively label the very work of the Gospel and the duty of the Christian church–such as feeding the hungry, improving the life of the poor and single mothers, caring for the sick and the widow, sheltering the homeless and the orphan, welcoming the immigrant and the homeless, visiting prisoners and the abused, and campaigning for greater social justice projects & uplift social programs on behalf of the vulnerable and the economically-disadvantaged population and class– “social Gospel” or “social salvation.”
While followers of Jesus Christ should prioritize the spiritual salvation and freedom of the lost and the glorious redemption of Christ and God’s relentless love and abundant grace in Christ for all people, social salvation by performing good works to the needy and for the marginalized in our city and nation and the Christian responsibility to ameliorate the human condition in our community and in the world is integral to the very message of the Gospel. The biblical call to embody the Gospel in real life situations is a comprehensive Christian mission, empowered by the Spirit of grace and liberation.
If your Gospel consists of only the proclamation of the Word of God and not the concrete and tangible demonstration of the transformative power and deeds of the Word to people, your version of the Gospel is incomplete.
If your understanding of the Gospel accentuates only spiritual freedom from sin, and not servant evangelism, your idea of the Gospel does not do justice to the “whole Gospel.”
If your definition of the Gospel is about preparing people on earth for heaven while neglecting the liberative thrust of the Kingdom of God on earth, your Gospel does not promote or honor God’s holistic plan to redeem the whole humanity and his creation.
Because the Gospel matters for the whole life and in all life situations and circumstances, whether be it in the spiritual sphere, the intellectual life, the cultural sphere, or in the political realm, the Gospel must be seen and interpreted as a life reality like the breath of life that is necessary for the progression of human life and existence.
The Gospel is not just an idea or concept, it is a person: God Himself.
The Gospel is not just a message, it is Jesus Christ, the very content and definition of that message. His person/work (both in its spiritual aspect and tangible activities) is that Message.
The Gospel is not just about a transformative power, the Holy Spirit is that very Power of the Gospel.
The Gospel is not about how to find life in Jesus Christ, Jesus Christ is Life himself.
Blessings and Peace,