I've said that the gospel in a word is Jesus and the story of Jesus and all the stories about Jesus. But, as Christie's comment to yesterday's post reveals, this brings up a whole host of questions about the story of Jesus as it appears in the New Testament. How much do we really know about what Jesus actually said and did? Are the Gospels an accurate record of the historical Jesus, or are they accounts of what the early church wished Jesus had said and done?
There's historical and literary research and argument in order to prove something one way or another about the accuracy of these ancient texts, and those efforts are commendable. But I'd like you to do a different kind of research and proving.
I'd like to ask you to consider whether or not the story makes sense to you. Does it reveal something you haven't seen before? Is it a reality you'd like to live in?
If so, then you can prove the truth of the gospel in your life not by historical investigation or philosophical argument but by participating in the love of God made real through Jesus Christ. That's actually possible because, although the story of the gospel begins thousands of years ago, it continues today. The reality which is the good news of Jesus Christ is an everlasting story; it's eternal life through God's Son.
Over the next several weeks, let's explore together this story of Jesus as the story of God's love for us. I won't retell the story -- I wouldn't dare -- there's no substitute for the real story. Instead, I'll try to draw your attention to certain features within the story in the New Testament and highlight ways I see that story continuing among us today.