Tag Archive | Gospel

The Gospel Focus of Charles Spurgeon

The Gospel Focus of Charles Spurgeon (Long Line of Godly Men Profiles) – Free Kindle Book

by Dr. Steven J. Lawson

The Gospel Focus of Charles Spurgeon is a passionate call for all Christians to follow Spurgeon in maintaining the proper balance between divine sovereignty in salvation and fiery passion in spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Free for a limited time.


Voddie Baucham – Doctrine Matters – Getting the Gospel Right

Some when they say gospel they are talking about a social gospel.

Others they speak of all the teachings of Jesus with a legalism bent.

Gospel of ‘love God, love people’ is actually a summary of the law. The gospel freed us from the law.

11th Commandment “Thou shalt be nice”.

Today’s ‘Jesus’ walked around being nice with a lamb on his shoulders.

I. An Argument from Authority

1 Corinthians 15:1-3

1 Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand,
2 and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain.
3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures,

Salvation requires the gospel.

“If you hold fast”

Simple answer – MacArthur “If you could lose your Salvation, you would.”

Ephesians 1:11- 13

11 In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will,
12 so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory.
13 In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit,
14 who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory.

If the Holy Spirit doesn’t show up to pay the bill then there is no God.

II. An Argument from Evidence

1 Corinthians15:4-7

4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures,
5 and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve.
6 Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep.
7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles.
8 Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me.

Biblical evidence – Authority of Scripture

More than 300 were still alive at this time. Evidence from first person eye witnesses. Personal evidence. Even Paul saw the resurrected Christ.

Paul is not pointing to himself as an authority based on his experience. It is the gospel that saves not a compelling testimony. Testimonies don’t tip the scales. Your testimony is that Christ died for your sins.

Galatians 2:1-2

1 Then after fourteen years I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, taking Titus along with me.
2 I went up because of a revelation and set before them (though privately before those who seemed influential) the gospel that I proclaim among the Gentiles, in order to make sure I was not running or had not run in vain.

God was public with the Gospel it is real. John say “we have seen him”.

1 John 1:1-

1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we looked upon and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life—
2 the life was made manifest, and we have seen it, and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was made manifest to us—
3 that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ.

III. An Argument from Logic

1 Corinthians 15:12-19

12 Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead?
13 But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised.
14 And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain.
15 We are even found to be misrepresenting God, because we testified about God that he raised Christ, whom he did not raise if it is true that the dead are not raised.
16 For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised.
17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins.
18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
19 If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied.

Seven problems with no resurrection

1) Then even Christ hasn’t been raised.

2) Our preaching is vain.

3) Your faith is vain.

4) We are found to be misrepresenting God. I am then a blaspheming liar.

5) You are still in your sins. No justification.

6) Those who have died then have perished.

7) We are pitiful because there is no hope.

Christ indeed has been raised.


Joel Beeke – What Really Is the Gospel?

Asked for prayer for Michael, Pam and their four children of his congregation. Michael was involved in a wreck, just before Beeke left home, and is in critical condition.

1 Timothy 1:12-17
12 I thank him who has given me strength, Christ Jesus our Lord, because he judged me faithful, appointing me to his service,
13 though formerly I was a blasphemer, persecutor, and insolent opponent. But I received mercy because I had acted ignorantly in unbelief,
14 and the grace of our Lord overflowed for me with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus.
15 The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost.
16 But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life.
17 To the King of ages, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.

I. The Gospel’s Content

euaggelión – gospel

Eu – good

Aggelos – messenger

The Gospel is the good message.

Romans 10:15 And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, *“How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!”

Not good advice, not hypothetical. Good news. Salvation that is completed. That is the good news.

Declaration of what has been accomplished.

Christ Jesus

1) came into the world
2) to save sinners

Total depravity is inseparable from sin itself. It means transgressing God’s boundaries. Total depravity is primarily an inward thing. Conceived and born in iniquity. Every part of me is unclean in the sight of God. We are alienated from God. We are slaves of sin. Sin is our master. The wages of sin is death.

II. The Gospel’s Reliability

The Gospel never fails. The Gospel is always true. “Trustworthy” is in the place of importance in the sentence in the Greek. It is finished.

III. The Gospel Scope

The Gospel is given to the whole world. It is worthy to be accepted by all. Acceptance is not just an Armenian term, vs 15 “The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance,

IV. The Gospel’s Pattern

1 Timothy 1:16 But I received mercy for this reason, that in me, as the foremost, Jesus Christ might display his perfect patience as an example to those who were to believe in him for eternal life.

Paul is the pattern that the of the “chief of sinners” can be saved.

V. The Gospel’s Doxology

1 Timothy 1:17 To the King of ages, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen.

Grateful love must come forth. You cannot “not” bring the gospel to others. The gulf is bridged. The Gospel gives glory to God.

Come sinner to the good news of Christ crucified and Him exalted.


Steve Lawson – Why Preach the Intolerant Message of the Exclusive Gospel?

Galatians 1:6 – 10

6 I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel—
7 not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ.
8 But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed.
9 As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed.
10 For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.

The Gospel is the only way of Salvation

Genesis – Revelation – by grace alone, through faith alone, through Christ alone

Every other path leads to Hell

We must be Bull-dogmatic about this!

Galatians is Paul’s most passionate letter. Fiery zeal

Paul can’t wait for a secretary to write, he wrote in his own hand.

The gospel has been compromised. Judiazers have come in the church. Salvation is no longer a gift but a reward for the righteous.

Paul is amazed, astonished, shocked – bewildered, marvel, blow my mind,

Shocked at the believers and that they have gone AWOL. They aren’t deserting Paul, they are deserting God Himself.

Quickly – Paul was just there – he had no more left town then they deserted the gospel.

Piper – “God is the Gospel”

They were desecrating the glory of God.

Salvation is based on the finished work of Christ on the cross.

God was being attacked.

Vs 6 amazed, shocked, stunned that the believers were so quickly deserting God who called them by the grace of Christ. God only calls sinners by the gospel the grace of Christ.

The Gospel – the grace of Christ

Different – heteros – different of another kind

They were trading Diamonds for dirt – truth for lie

Only one saving gospel

John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

ECT – no difference between the gospel and Rome?

Larry King – compare MacArther’s response vs Joel Osteen’s

Trouble you – Disturbed,

Distort – pervert

Earn your way to God

Salvation is not Faith and …

1) Baptism

2) Good works

3) Speaking in tongues

4) Miracles

Paul’s anathemas

1) Even if we …

2) or an Angel from heaven

He is to be accursed (anathema – devoted to destruction – go to Hell) before he can take others with him.

Paul starts it all over again in vs 9.

As we have said before, so I say again!

If any man is preaching (on going) any other gospel let him be accursed.

Paul is so hot that this is the first part of the first chapter.

No “I thank God for you” no “I …. for you” just a public rebuke. Not the typical beginning of Paul’s letters.

Beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep’s clothing but are ravenous wolves.

Paul’s aim vs 10 am I seeking the favor of men or of God? Paul seeks affirmation from God and God alone.

“If you please God it doesn’t matter who you displease, but if you displease God it doesn’t matter who you please.”


The Transforming Power of the Gospel

The Transforming Power of the Gospel – free kindle version

by Jerry Bridges

The apostle Paul writes that we are to be transformed, but for many Christians, figuring out how to approach spiritual transformation can be elusive. Bestselling author Jerry Bridges helps us understand that we have available to us the ultimate power source for true spiritual growth: the gospel.

In The Transforming Power of the Gospel, Bridges guides you through a thorough examination of:

  • what the biblical meaning of grace is and how it applies to your life
  • how Jesus’ work in His life and death applies to the believer in justification and adoption
  • why basic spiritual disciplines are necessary for spiritual growth
  • what role the Holy Spirit plays in both definitive and progressive sanctification


Steve Lawson – “Gospel-Centered Preaching” – 2011 True Church Conference

Message 7 – Steve Lawson – “Gospel-Centered Preaching”

This sermon is a continuation of the message which Dr. Lawson began last night, looking at the five common denominators of the 19 sermons in the book of Acts. This has been expanded to six common denominators over the course of the evening. This represents 25% of the book of Acts. The first common denominator covered last night is that Jesus Christ is the fulfillment of Old Testament Scriptures. The text of the sermon is Acts 3:11-26. Here is the remainder of the common denominators.

2. The sermons emphasize the sinless life of Christ (see verse 14). Jesus Christ is the Holy and Righteous One. Sinless perfection. Perfectly moral character. Perfect compliance to the will of God. No deviation from the glory of God the Father. Why is this important? Why did Jesus not come from heaven immediately to the cross? Jesus lived under the law, in subjection to the moral law of God. The very law we fail to keep, He kept. It is this righteousness that is imputed to us in justification. Righteousness imputed to sinners was not created out of nothing. We need more than our sins forgiven, we need a holiness that does not belong to us, a righteousness that is not our own.

3. The sermons emphasize the substitutionary death of Jesus Christ (see verse 15). The charge is killing the author, or prince, of live. The originator of life was put to death. Jesus did not die as a victim, He died as a victor (see Acts 4:10ff). The rejected stone has become the chief cornerstone.

4. The sermons emphasize the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ. Of all who were crucified, there was only one who was raised from the dead. See verse 15. And a subset of this is frequently the eyewitness account of the resurrection. A living savior must be dominant in our preaching. A dead savior is no savior at all.

5. The sermons emphasize the necessity of repentance and faith (see verses 6, 16, 19). These two are inseparable. Without faith, repentance is nothing more than a moral resolution. Without repentance, faith is just head knowledge.

6. The sermons emphasize the inescapability of the final judgment. There will be a final judgment at the end of the age. A final day of accountability. Otherwise, our preaching is nothing but suggestions and options to the people. There are consequences for not heeding the preaching. See verse 23. A closely related topic to this which is emphasized in these sermons in the book of Acts is the session of Jesus Christ at the right hand of God the Father in heaven. He is the judge who presides. See Acts 17:31 – this day has been fixed.

Now is the time for the strongest men to preach the strongest message in the context of the strongest ministry. – Dr. John MacArthur.


Steve Lawson – “The Gospel in the Old Testament” – 2011 True Church Conference

Message 5 – Steve Lawson – “The Gospel in the Old Testament”

The text of Dr. Lawson’s sermon is Acts 3:11-25.  The gospel is rooted and grounded in the Old Testament. It is not a new idea in the New Testament. It is and always has been the one and only way of salvation. The only difference is the point of view which people look unto Jesus Christ, forward or back. The gospel began in Genesis. Take for instance Genesis 3:15. The blood of Jesus is a scarlet thread through the Old Testament.

There are five common denominators in the 19 sermons found in the book of Acts. The sermon of Acts chapter 3 clearly shows all five of these distinctives. Tonight we look at only the first of these five.

1. Jesus is the fulfillment of the Old Testament. Peter preaches that the gospel is inseparably found in the Old Testament. See verse 13. The selfsame servant of the Lord found in the Old Testament is Jesus Christ of the Old Testament. Isaiah is replete with “servant songs”.  Then see verse 18. Every single prophet in the Old Testament foretold of the coming of Christ. Then see verses 20-21.  There are pictures of Jesus throughout the Old Testament. He is preeminent throughout the Bible. Then see verses 22-23. The entire Old Testament looks forward to the coming of Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ spoke as no one ever spoke. His words were greater than that of Moses. Don’t listen to Moses. Listen to Jesus. He is the great prophet of God.  Then look at verse 24. All the prophets without any exceptions had one central compelling message. Then look at verse 25. Jesus is the fulfillment of the covenant with Abraham. All the blessings of grace and salvation would come through the seed of Abraham, the Lord Jesus Christ. Then look at verse 26. God reiterates that Jesus Christ is His chosen servant and sent him to bless by turning men from their wicked ways.

Romans chapter 1 shows the basis the gospel has in the Old Testament. In verses 1-3 we see the basis of the scriptures and the lineage of Jesus. And then verse 17 pulls from the Old Testament to tell us that the just shall live by faith. Then in Romans chapter 4 we see examples in the Old Testament of salvation through faith alone. Abraham and David are specifically called out.

The same case is made in 1 Corinthians 15. Paul points out that the Old Testament scriptures point to a Christ who died, was buried, and was raised from the dead.

And finally consider Galatians 3. There is only one way of salvation. Salvation of the Gentiles was foreseen in the Old Testament.


Bruce Ware – “The Gospel 101 – God’s Gift of the Gospel” – 2011 True Church Conference

Message 3 – Bruce Ware – “The Gospel 101 – God’s Gift of the Gospel”

What is the gift of the gospel? There is a narrow and a broad understanding of the gospel. The narrow understanding is the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. His work to pay for our sins. The broad understanding is how the gospel is lived out. It is the application of the gospel. Living lives to the glory of God and the furtherance of His kingdom.

The text for Ware’s second message is 1 Corinthians 15:1-8.  Look at the structure of this message: 1) Christ died for our sins and was buried. And Paul points to the Biblical support and empirical support for this claim. 2) Christ was raised on the third day and appeared. Once again, Paul points out Biblical support and empirical support for this claim. These two claims are absolutely essential to the Christian faith – rooted and based on history, and also rooted and based in theology. Christ died – historical accuracy – for our sins – theological truth. To the physical eye all three being crucified looked the same, but to the spiritual eye the One in the middle was supremely different than the other two.

Christ died “for” our sins. The Greek word “huper” has a strong and a weak meaning. Either for the benefit or as a substitution. Did Christ die to provide us a benefit? Yes, but it is much more than that. Christ died as a substitute for us. This is seen in John 10:15. Penal substitution is central to the work of the cross.

Christ was raised on the third day. 1 Corinthians 15 is about the resurrection. Look at the theology of the resurrection. If Christ has not been raised we are still in our sins. What does the resurrection of Christ have to do with efficacy of the atonement of our sins? Sin is a two-fold program. It is a penalty we cannot pay and a power we cannot overcome. The penalty of sin is death. The power of sin ultimately is the power of death. Christ died for the penalty of sin on the cross. But he must rise from the dead to show that the penalty of sin is set aside. And then the resurrection demonstrates that Christ also has the power over sin.

What is the relationship between the payment for the penalty and the conquering of sin’s power? Is there a relationship between these two? We love to preach the power over sin, but not the penal substitution for sin. Heresies arising from the misuse of the love of God cause some to disown the need for the penal substitution. We love the Christ victorious over sin, but disdain a wrathful God who demands that the penalty be paid.


Bruce Ware – “The Gospel 101 – Our Need for the Gospel” – 2011 True Church Conference

Friday, February 18, 2011

Message 2 – Bruce Ware – “The Gospel 101 – Our Need for the Gospel”

Dr. Bruce Ware is a professor at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. The topic of his first message today is the gospel – the basics of the gospel, our need for the gospel, the basis of the gospel.

Why do we need the gospel? Because for many people grace is not amazing. We are concentrating on self, even in our churches. We sing a song entitled “Entitled Grace”. The gospel must be amazing.

What is the basis of the gospel? The gospel has three pillars, as a stool needs three legs. Then they must be joined together.

1) Humanity’s sinfulness. You cannot preach the Bible without preaching about sin.

a. sin is universal. Jews and Gentiles are sinful. All have turned aside. This is Paul’s message in Romans. When it is said that we fall short of the glory of God we should understand this to say that we fail to ascribe to God the glory due to Him and Him alone.

b. the penalty and power of sin. By sin we are found guilty. We have incurred the penalty of divine judgment and eternal condemnation. And the power of sins speaks of our abject slavery to sin. We are held captive by sin in life and are being lead to death if we are outside of Christ (see 2 Timothy 2:26).

c. the total inability of sinners to rescue themselves.  No flesh can be justified by the works of the law (see Galatians 2:21). No offering we can make can satisfy for the punishment of our sin (see Hebrews 10:4)

We rob our people of understanding when we don’t preach on sin. It is the greatest problem we have to deal with in our lives.

2) God’s holiness.  We must understand God’s holiness, righteousness, and justice. We must first understand that God is separated from us because He is holy. Righteousness is God’s holiness in action. It is God’s “right-ness” in what He speaks, what he does, what He thinks. He conforms perfectly to His holiness. And third God judges rightly because He is righteous.

a. God is the lawgiver. The One who sets the standards.

b. God is the judge. He hold’s his creatures accountable for their conformity to holy, moral standards (see Romans 2:6ff).

What is the relationship between our sin and God’s holiness?  God must judge our sin. Sin cannot be disregarded. God must deal with our sin to satisfy the full demand of justice. And this could be the end of the story. 2) Eternal death and condemnation is exactly what we deserve for our sins.

3. God’s mercy and grace.  Hopeless man is the target of God’s mercy (see Ephesians 2:1ff.) Grace is God’s kindness to those who are undeserving. A required gratuity is no gratuity at all (see Ephesians 2:8-9).

What is the relationship of God’s mercy and grace to our sinfulness? See Romans 9:15. It is God’s initiative to freely give mercy and grace to anyone He desires, and He did not have to do so. He has neither an external nor an internal obligation to show mercy and bestow grace.

But what is the relationship between the holiness of God and the mercy and grace of God. Grace and mercy cannot be shown in contradiction to the holiness of God. Therefore there was no compromise allowed in meting our mercy and grace at the expense of God’s holiness. God’s standard of holiness is not disregarded in any case. Therefore the cross – the cross fulfills the demands of God’s holiness and lets mercy and grace be shed on His people. And the ultimate aim of God’s mercy and grace is to produce holiness in His people – imputed holiness and experiential holiness.

God’s holiness, righteousness and justice are fully displayed at the cross. And God’s grace and mercy are likewise fully displayed at the cross.