Getting the Gospel Right – 1 Cor. 2:1-5 & 2 Tim. 4:1-5
As a church what we believe about the Gospel, how we present the Gospel, and how we grow people in the Gospel is CRUCIAL. If we get this wrong… then everything we are trying to do under the name of Jesus Christ is likely to be wrong. Paul encourages both the church of Corinth and Timothy (at Ephesus) how important it is to get it right.
The Gospel is God’s Story and not ours. – v. 1
And I, when I came to you, brothers, did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with lofty speech or wisdom.
Testimony of God – The Gospel is God’s word.
Lofty Speech or wisdom
· We do not need to preach “me” or turn the story into us.
· We do not need to be cute or relevant. To sneak the Gospel in.
· We do not need to change anything of the Gospel to fit our current culture. (we are all guilty of trying to find that particular presentation or tract that people will “get”)
The Gospel is centered on the redemptive purpose of Jesus Christ – v. 2
For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified
The heart of the Gospel:
· God – His greatness, goodness, and glory.
· Rebellion – Man is separated from God over their sin.
· Atonement – Forgiveness is available through and because of Jesus Christ.
· Conversion – We must respond and receive by faith. We must repent of our sin, place our trust in Christ, and turn our life over to Him.
· Eternal life – We can and will have a new life beginning now and lasting for all eternity.
Crucified – Our sin before His holiness is the reason Christ was crucified.
· Not just believing in Jesus
· Not just wanting to go to heaven.
· IT IS ABOUT REALIZING WE ARE IN NEED OF A SAVIOR.
· WE ARE DEAD IN OUR TRESPASSES AND SIN BEFORE A HOLY GOD AND WE DESERVE HELL… AND ONLY THROUGH CHRIST CAN OUR SINS BE FORGIVEN AND WE CAN BE CLOTHED WITH RIGHTEOUSNESS… FILLED WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT… AND BORN AGAIN TO LIVE A NEW LIFE… FULL OF JOY AND OBEDIENCE… GROWING AND CHANGING INTO THE LIKENESS OF OUR SAVIOR EVERYDAY… COMMUNING WITH THE SAINTS AND WORSHIP OUR LORD.
The Gospel is empowered by the Holy Spirit – vv. 3-5
And I was with you in weakness and in fear and much trembling,  and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power
Paul ministered in weakness, in fear and trembling.
· He understood the task given him.
Not plausible words of wisdom
· Paul knew it was not what he was saying, but what God had said. (2nd time mentioned. Trust the power of the Word)
But in demonstration of the Spirit and of power
· It is the Spirit of God that works through the Word of God into the heart of man.
· We do not bring about conversion, we just humbly and boldly share the message under the power of the Holy Spirit.
Paul lays this out perfectly in 2 Tim 4:1-5
We must proclaim with a spirit empowered message
· Preach – to publish, proclaim openly: something which has been done
· In Season and out of Season – Be ready all the time. Never change the Gospel, regardless of the setting.
· Reprove – Expose wrong, To point out. Correct behavior.
· Rebuke – Criticize Sharply. Attitude of the heart. More pointed.
· Exhort – Encouragement. Aid and comfort.
· With complete Patience and Teaching – easier said than done. I AM NOT A FIXER. With patience we teach. Let the Spirit work the mind and heart… then the life will follow.
· Always Be sober minded – keep your head.
· Endure suffering – from the world and from the church
· Do the work of an evangelist – Not a specific role, but every time we preach, we are an evangelist.
It is the means of true saving faith– v. 5
so that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God
We cannot control the hearts of people, but we can control the message we proclaim.
WE MUST PROCLAIM THE CLEAR GOSPEL MESSAGE
1 Corinthians 2:1–5
 And I, when I came to you, brothers, did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with lofty speech or wisdom.  For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.  And I was with you in weakness and in fear and much trembling,  and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power,  so that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God. (ESV)
2 Timothy 4:1–5
 I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom:  preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.  For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions,  and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.  As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry. (ESV)
One thought on “1 Cor. 2:1-5 & 2 Tim. 4:1-5 – “Getting the Gospel Right””
This is great! Thank you!