Gospel Invitation

This year (2024) is the 17th anniversary of the launch of this blog. In celebration, here is a slightly edited version of one of the original posts, published in October, 2007.

"Christ and the Rich Young Ruler" by Hoffman (public domain via Wikimedia Commons)

Those who embrace incarnational Trinitarian theology often ask for a summary that can be used in a brief evangelistic gospel presentation. Here is one for your consideration.

1. Who is Jesus? This is life's great question for it addresses one that we all ask: Who am I? Jesus is the Son of the Father, the one filled with the Spirit beyond measure, fully God and fully (now glorified) human. Through him we all have been given "participation in the life of God" (2Pet 1.3). You may not know it, but it is true. Just think of all the ways that God's life has been expressed in your life already.

2. This life of God is love...joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, goodness, and self-control. It is a shared life of intimacy, freedom, delight, adventure and unbounded creativity.

3. God created you for ONE purpose: To ADOPT you (Eph. 1:4-5), and thus to include you in Jesus' relationship with the heavenly Father. Everything God does within the cosmos, including within your life, serves this purpose. Why? Because he loves you.

4. Jesus' GOOD NEWS: "The kingdom of God has arrived among you" (Mat. 12:28). "The kingdom of God is in your midst" (Luke 17:21). Jesus proclaimed that the eternal life of the Triune God has entered into human existence, transforming it forever. "Adam's one sin brought condemnation upon everyone, but Christ's one act of righteousness makes all people right in God's sight and give them life" (Romans 5:18). God's "eternal purpose which he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord [is this]: In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence (Eph. 3:11-12). God's purpose is our adoption. And this purpose has been accomplished! Through his incarnation, life, death, resurrection and ascension, Jesus has drawn humanity into the inner circle of God's triune fellowship.

That's where you are. And here is what this means for you:

a. You are a FORGIVEN sinner, eternally loved and embraced by the father.
God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men's sins against them (2Cor 5:19).

b. Believe this good news (repent [change your thinking] and have faith)
"By believing you may have life in his name" (John 20:31). "God is the Savior of all men, and especially of those who believe" (1Tim. 4:10). "'What must we do to do the work God requires'? Jesus answered, 'The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent'" (John 6:28-29). "The message they heard was of no value to them, because those who heard did not combine it with faith" (Heb. 4:2).

c. Through repentance and faith you will begin to participate in the life that has been yours all along in Christ
"This is eternal life; that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent" (John 17:3).

Eternal life is knowing the Triune God by faith, participating in the life he has given to all humanity by adoption, and in doing so experiencing the love, joy and peace of the Triune Life forever. To not participate is to miss out on the fullness of life that God has for you.

May God help you to see yourself as he sees you, to believe the wonderful good news of how he has adopted you and to trust that and begin to experience fully what has been yours all along.